Small business owners know the importance of social media. You have your Facebook business page set up, and probably Twitter and Instagram too. If your company is growing, you should think about outsourcing your social media management to an outside firm, so you can focus on doing what you do best. But how do you know what to look for in a social media partner? We have a list of relevant questions for you to ask, before you make a final decision.

Will You Develop A Social Media Strategy? If So, How?

Prior to beginning any social media campaigns, it’s important to have a strategy in place. It doesn’t have to be complicated, but it needs to be a roadmap for which platforms you’ll focus on, how often the pages will be updated, and what kind of content will be shared. Ideally, any social media firm you partner with should be able to create the strategy as a first step. If they can’t provide a brief overview of one, then you should find another potential partner.

Who Will Manage My Social Media Accounts?

Make sure to ask who will manage your accounts. Will the social media firm assign a dedicated team member or will different people work on it? Is there a specific person you will be able to contact with questions of if you have new information? If there is a dedicated team member, how much experience do they have in managing social media campaigns

Who Provides The Content?

Establish in the first meeting what is expected in terms of content. How much content will you be providing during the campaign? Will the firm provide images or videos for your social media accounts? Will you be finding and sending them relevant industry news, or will the firm find it for you? There’s no right or wrong answer here. This is important so that you have a clear understanding of what the firm is responsible for and what you will provide, giving you an idea of what the demands on your time will be.

What Type Of Content Will You Post?

Social media is about being social. This means that every single update shouldn’t be about your company. Think about it this way. Would you follow a page that only talks about itself? It’s important to strike a happy balance between updates about your company and brand and other content that is interesting to your followers like inspiring articles or videos. Suggest the 80/20 rule, where 20% of the updates are specifically about your company and business and the remaining 80% share news, images, or videos related to your industry but not your company.

Will The Content Have My Brand’s Personality And Voice?

Whatever content the social media firm provides for you should be crafted to reflect your business. Not merely your industry, but your business in particular. The social media expert you hire should take some time to learn about your brand’s voice and personality and craft the content they create to fit that voice.

Will The Content Be The Same For Each Platform?

There are plenty of social media tools like Hoot Suite which firms use to send out the same updates to all of a company’s social media accounts. Does that strategy work for you? Maybe not. Each social media platform is different, and has its own culture and with that in mind the updates should be tailored to each one.

Will I See Updates Before They Go Live?

This is up to you. You can establish expectations with the firm about having updates sent to you for approval. It’s an important step in quality control. By spending a few minutes looking over the content before it’s posted on your pages, you can check it for accuracy and relevance, both to your brand and your industry.

Will The Content You Create Be Exclusive?

A lot of social media firms use the exact same content for a lot of their clients. They may even subscribe to third party providers to create content for them. The fact remains, that if you want to stand out among everyone else out there who also has social media pages, then it’s important that the content you share is unique and customized to your brand. If the social media partner you’re considering can’t provide this, it’s better to find this out in the first meeting so you can move on.

Read more relevant blog post: Benefits Of Direct Marketing Via Email And Social Media