In today’s fast-paced digital world, a strong social media presence can be a make-or-break strategy for businesses. We’ve all seen the power of how a viral tweet or a captivating TikTok can skyrocket a brand’s popularity and bottom line. But that level of content boom doesn’t happen by accident. It takes people behind the scenes with the marketing expertise and understanding of platforms, audiences, and trends to employ data-driven, creative foresight to produce and promote successful content.
So, how do you build the dream team to make that happen? Let’s dive into the art and science of growing a social media team for your business!
Why Employ A Social Media Team?
Before we jump into the nitty-gritty of finding and maintaining a social media team, let’s talk about why you should have one in the first place. Having a specialized team behind you can truly be the backbone of your digital marketing strategy. Social media is where your brand’s personality shines, where you connect with your audience, and where trends are born. A well-oiled social media machine is essential to stand out online.
Here’s how it went for me. Fifteen years ago, I branched out to start my own boutique digital marketing agency, Go Getter Marketing Group, which I co-founded with my husband. At first, it was just me running the show, and it took nearly a year to get my first actual client (an actual client who was not a friend or family member). Then, as my business grew, I put together a small team of enthusiastic individuals who knew their way around Facebook and Twitter.
Soon after we started, the results were astounding. Our online presence grew, and so did our customer engagement. We were suddenly on the radar of business owners who contacted us through our social media channels, ready to hire us. This transformation made me realize that social media was not just a nice-to-have but a must-have.
From this experience starting out and in the decade-plus following, I gained valuable insights into what it takes to discover, hire, and train a team that can work wonders for your brand’s social media marketing strategy.
Structuring Your Social Media Team
Like any business strategy, you need a plan before implementing it. Knowing ahead of time what objectives you want to achieve, what operational holes you need to fill to get there, and what resources you have to do so are all important to outline before recruiting anybody.
- Define The Goals: It all starts with a clear vision. Your social media team’s goals should be aligned with your company’s broader marketing objectives. For example, as I created my team, I asked each of them to share their growth goals and personal standards for success. I wanted to ensure we were all in alignment. I often reminded my team that “we are architects of our client’s brands on social media.”
- Define The Roles: Picture your team like a puzzle – each piece has a unique responsibility but fits together seamlessly. Content creators, community managers, analysts, and strategists are your essential pieces. Their jobs are to take specialized know-how like graphic design, copywriting, video editing, and social engagement and put them to work towards both your short-term and grand-scope goals.
- Define The Size: The answer isn’t one-size-fits-all when it comes to how big your social media team should be. The right team size depends on your goals and budget. Only hire what you need; it’s more about quality, not quantity. A small but passionate, knowledgeable team can do amazing things!
Recruiting Your Social Media Team
Once you’ve figured out what you want your future team to accomplish and what resources you have to hire them, it’s time to find the right people to fill your team. The first step is to write out job descriptions that speak to your ideal applicants. Be clear about your expectations and your brand’s personality – think back to the goals you defined to help craft this.
Then, go looking for a motivated pool of candidates. LinkedIn, Indeed, Upwork, Flexjobs, online job boards, industry events, and even word-of-mouth referrals are key places to discover potential team members. My first two hires were my sister-in-law and a childhood friend working in media and business development. Be sure to consider your peers or people you already know with a proven track record and experience.
After narrowing down applications to the interview round, you’ll ideally have your pick of candidates with an intimate knowledge of social media platforms and trends, experience in your industry, and marketing portfolios with the metrics to walk the walk. You’ll want to hone your list for qualities like creativity, adaptability, and passion. Not only will interviewees with these qualities be well-suited for the constantly shifting realm of social media, but they will also be driven to help your brand grow and meet your goals.
Onboarding and Training Your Social Media Team
So, you’ve found your dream team! Now it’s time to get down to business, at least your business. They need to know more about your brand’s story, operations, culture, and tools. You’ll also need to get them up to speed on industry and social media best practices and any regulatory requirements, if applicable.
- Onboarding isn’t just about paperwork and handshakes. Offer shadowing experiences and resources to your new team members to help them get the lay of the land. Whether your team will work on-site, hybrid, or remotely, ensure they’ve met everyone they’ll be working with and explain everyone’s roles. If you use teamwork software like Microsoft Teams or a shared Google Drive, allow them to explore and learn about your existing processes.
- Training is a worthy investment for new recruits to ensure they’re caught up on the latest social media trends and technology. Make sure you have the budget for tools and marketing materials that can supercharge your team’s effectiveness, then provide instructions on how to use them. Having company accounts for social media management hubs (e.g., Hootsuite, Sendible, Buffer) and content creation resources (Canva is a favorite of mine) and streamline processes, schedule posts, and analyze data can make life easier for your team both to get started and in the long run. The more they know, the better they’ll perform.
- Continuous learning is crucial in the ever-evolving social media landscape. Algorithms, world and industry news, technology challenges, and business developments can all change suddenly, and your team will need to be ready and able to pivot. Encourage your team to stay up-to-date with the latest trends and tools continuously. Attending conferences, taking online courses from services like LinkedIn Learning or digital marketing training from coaches, and following experts are invaluable ways to do this. Again, the more they know, the better they can adapt and innovate.
Managing and Leading Your Social Media Team
Managing a social media team is like conducting an orchestra. It requires effective leadership, communication, and collaboration. How do you achieve this? Let’s break it down.
For one thing, leadership style matters. I’ve found that being approachable, adaptable, and data-driven has made all the difference for my business. Listening to their ideas and implementing ones that make sense fosters a sense of belonging and motivation in the team. Encourage your team to be creative and experiment with content. Who knows? The next viral sensation could be just one fresh idea away.
This applies not just individually, but as a group! Your organization’s overall culture plays a significant role in shaping your social media team’s dynamics. A supportive and inclusive environment encourages your team to thrive, collaborate, and innovate.
Communication and Collaboration
Magic happens when your team works together. Encourage brainstorming sessions, idea sharing, and cross-specialty input. Hold meetings or use teamwork tools like Trello or Slack so everyone knows what each other is working on. This will be especially helpful when conducting content creation batches and when repurposing content for different social media platforms. Returning to those core goals will keep their gears turning on how to reach per-campaign key performance indicators and think outside the box to expand those business goals even further.
That’s another way you come in. Management includes setting wise KPIs to measure the success of the team’s social media efforts and providing regular feedback and performance evaluations so that your team keeps striving to grow. In particular, recognizing hard work and rewarding exceptional performance is essential.
You Don’t Have To Do It Alone
In the ever-evolving world of digital marketing, a social media marketing team is your secret weapon. You’re a busy professional, and social media is literally a full-time job. If you’re stretched too thin trying to both run your company and work its entire social media strategy, you risk at least one of them not getting the attention it deserves. By growing a dedicated social media team, you can focus on being the leader you are.
Set clear goals, recruit the right talent, invest in training, foster creativity, and adapt to change. With the right strategy and dedication, you can build a social media dream team that drives success. Every incredible journey starts with a single step, and your path to social media success begins here.
If you have any questions or success stories to share, please reach out. I’m here to help you empower your digital marketing strategy and take your business to new heights!