As many of us have come to know over the past decade if you don’t have a social media presence it is likely that your customers will think don’t you exist at all. As a result, social media branding and management have become vital skills that entrepreneurs have either had to master or bring someone in to help with. One option would be to outsource social media marketing to a Virtual Assistant (VA) from Latin America.
According to Buffer, a strong social media strategy that includes planning, implementation, and measurement will likely take 12 hours a week.
While this may not seem like much time, every entrepreneur knows that each hour of the day is precious. Piling on 12 hours in addition to the tasks you are already handling can be a stretch. So, how can you combat what feels like an unwelcome expansion of duties? You can outsource social media marketing to an experienced Virtual Assistant from Latin America. This step can be just what you need to move your social media presence forward.
However, before you bring on that next team member, here are some things you should do. First, ensure that you both are in sync to correctly represent your business on social media before you outsource social media marketing.
Establish Your Brand Voice and Personality
Whether you are already on social media or have yet to make the jump, you need to ensure that you have established your brand voice, personality, and social media presence. Are you planning to inject humor in your postings, or do you want to go more for a formal tone? Are you planning to share videos, images, or utilize user-generated content? Decide how you want to represent your company before you hire someone. This step allows you to have a clear understanding of what you need so you can guide your VA to do the same.
Set Up Helpful Tools That Will Help You Easily Delegate Work
Just as a refresher regarding what a VA does, VAs are meant to take duties off of your plate that you could do yourself, but do not have the time to accomplish. Therefore, it makes sense to delegate your administrative tasks. Do this by setting your VA up for success from the get-go by having the necessary tools in place. First, make sure you take the time to create a content calendar and a place to store content, this could be as simple as setting up a WordPress theme.
One is a calendar that will let your VA know the content they should post by day, and the second is where you can house content for them to grab for posting. Another resource you should invest in is a collaboration tool. While email can be great, it is easy for messages to get lost in translation (especially day-to-day conversations). Programs like Asana, Trello, Basecamp, or other project management and collaboration tools can help you easily delegate tasks while sharing files and messaging. Knowing about these tools ahead of time will allow you to jump right into the swing of things with the training of your VA.
Hire a VA from Latin America
Now that you have done some frontend preparation that will help make the transition for a VA smooth, it is now time to hire one. Before you start to hire a VA, make sure you know what skills you need. For example, if you are going to use Hootsuite to schedule your post and track your social media metrics, then it would make sense to find someone who has either used this tool or may have experience working with something similar. Make sure you know what qualifications and knowledge you need to fulfill your vision for your social media plan.
Have Weekly Check-Ins
To ensure that you and your VA are on the same page make sure you establish a time during the week to check in to review their performance. Use these meetings to inform them of new tasks and responsibilities that you will assign on your chosen collaboration tool. In addition what your expectations are regarding posting and the creation of content. Along with asking them if they have any questions or seek clarification on any of the tasks.
You never know how your social media approach or strategy can change from week-to-week. So it is crucial that you routinely stay in touch to address any changes. You may also want to have a short time during each day to check in and see how progress is going. As you both continue working together churrete real, you will find a flow that works for you and your remote worker.
Know the Content You Want to Produce
As mentioned earlier, having an idea regarding your social media content strategy will really help you come up with a direct plan. From this plan you can outsource social media marketing to your VA. It is likely that you may have them handling other duties that are important. So before starting you’ll need to have a solid vision on the type of content you want to produce and post.
Are you going to focus your social media strategy on video or user-generated content? Have an efficient way for your VA to locate and post this content. Social media management can get pretty confusing, especially if you are posting across multiple platforms and each has different content. So, be sure to know the content you want, and have an easy way for VA to get this material.
Know and Communicate Your Expectations
How involved do you want your VA to be in the social media management process? Do you need someone to post your material? Or do you need them to create conversational postings to interact with your fans and followers? Be very clear during the interview process about what you are looking for. That way, you will be able to find someone who can accomplish the exact tasks you need. Defining your expectations will help you decide if you may need an actual social media professional. Or someone who can handle the more complex areas of social media management (creating a strategy). In addition to your overall expectations let them know what days you need them to check for new material. Along with when they need to get into contact with you, and how often they should keep track of metrics.
Monitor Their Workload
Again, as a Virtual Assistant, you’ll likely have them tackling quite a few other tasks. There is nothing wrong with this as it is the nature of virtual assisting. However, you want to ensure that your VA has enough time to get everything done. If they are spending a significant amount of time responding to messages on social media and handling content creation. Then it could take them away from other things you may need them to do.
So, you’ll have to decide what is a reasonable amount of time to complete the tasks at hand. Social media management and social media marketing are involved projects and you can outsource social media marketing and social media management to a VA.
Therefore, it is crucial that you determine what tasks your VA should do, and what you should be doing yourself.
Continue to Provide Training and Feedback
It is always a great idea to offer additional training opportunities for your VA. It may be their first time interacting with social media on a business level, or they may have a desire to become more well-versed in working with it. So, take time to speak with your VA and see what are their experiences regarding social media management. (If they do have vast experience then they may be the ideal fit to outsource social media marketing too.)
Over time, they may be equipped to handle more advanced tasks, and may even want to provide their insights on your social media strategy. Also, always make a practice of sitting down with your VA to discuss where they have excelled and how they can improve. This dialogue will ensure that you are providing the necessary feedback they need to keep meeting your expectations. Training and consistent feedback are two significant ways to give your VA the tools to succeed.
Social media management is not easy if it were everyone would be doing it right. So, if you are going to take on this task and outsource some of the administrative duties to a VA it is important that you convey your expectations and provide the right tools. Each social media platform has its own nuances, so make sure you’re working with a VA that has some experience with the platforms you want to use.
Social media management is a necessary practice that all companies (large and small) should engage in for brand awareness. It may seem overwhelming and daunting, especially if you are already swamped with other tasks. However, a VA from Latin America can help take some of the administrative (and even strategic) social media tasks off your plate.