Questions To Ask Before You Hire a Social Media Expert
Chances are if you own a business, you’ve probably considered how you could use social media as a tool to help your business. No matter if you’re a big business, small business or a one-man business, social media is one of the most powerful tools available to you. Whether it’s through Twitter, Facebook, Google+, LinkedIn, or any of the other niche social media networks, businesses have the ability to connect to their customers instantly.
However, with such power comes a lot of work and responsibility. If you’re already struggling to keep up with the needs of your business, social media may be too much for you to take on. This is why you’ll need to hire a social media manager. This important member of your team will help you not only manage your content, but also design and execute campaigns.
If you’re seriously considering hiring a social media expert, it’s important you take the time to ensure you find the right person for your business who can help you reach your highest potential. The following are some questions that you should consider asking during any interviews you conduct. These questions will not only help you understand more about the interviewee in general, but will also provide you with insight into their technical knowledge of different social media platforms.
Questions About The Candidate
- How long ago did you start using social media?
Obviously you’re going to want to hire someone who has a lot of experience with social media. This initial question should give you a good feel for the candidate. If they adopted social media early on and continue to use it, then there’s a good chance they’ll have the necessary skills to help your business.
- What social media platforms do you use and which are you most comfortable with?
Ideally, the candidate will be comfortable with a wide range of social media platforms. While the odds are good that your business will not require the use of every platform, it’s helpful to have someone who knows the most popular networks. In addition, it will be beneficial in the long run if the candidate is experienced with the social media platform you plan on using most.
- Besides social media, what other areas do you have a experience in?
While social media is obviously the most important skill they have, it’s important to know about their professional background. For example, a marketing background would be really nice because it means they have a general understanding of how the industry works.
- What do you think we should do first?
Asking this question should give you a great indication of the type of employee your candidate would be. It will show if they’ve done any sort of homework such as whether or not your business already has existing social media accounts. Additionally, it will show you whether the candidate knows how to implement an effective strategy that works for your business.
- Do you think my business needs to be on every social media site?
In short, the answer to this question should be no. There are very few businesses that exist that should be on every social media platform. A good candidate will be able to tell you exactly which platforms you should be on and why.
- Do you have any previous experience or knowledge with SEO?
SEO, or search engine optimization, is one of the more desirable skills in a social media manager because it’s important for business to have their content rank highly on Google searches. The higher it ranks, the more likely your customers are going to see it. The candidate should at least mention some experience using SEO to help drive content to an audience.
- How active are you on social media and approximately how many people are you connected with?
Obviously they’re not going to have celebrity status on social media, but it’s a good idea to find out how many people they’re connected with. Odds are, the more people they’re connected with, the more they’re used to dealing with communicating with them. Additionally, you want a candidate who is active on multiple social media platforms, as it shows that they’re staying up-to-date on with the industry.
- How would you handle a social media crisis?
In a perfect world, this would never be a problem. However, it’s important to plan for a social media crisis in case one does arise. Your ideal candidate should have an understanding of how they would handle any crisis that comes up. While it may not happen to them throughout the length of their career, it’s possible that it can happen right when they start. The more prepared they are, the more successful your business will be.
- How could you use social media as a tool for customer service?
Any sort of communication that takes place between your customers and your business can happen instantly online. This means you have the ability to receive feedback from your customers. If your candidate doesn’t know how to use social media for that purpose, then odds are they aren’t going to last in the job.
- How will you measure our social media return on investment (ROI)?
There’s no point in investing in a social media expert if you aren’t able to see the benefits it has provided to your company. There are a couple different ways to measure the return on investment of using social media, so make sure your candidate is aware of this.
- Are there any benefits to using social media management tools such as Hootsuite or TweetDeck?
Yes. The answer should always be yes. If it isn’t, you can remove this candidate from your hiring list. TweetDeck is a more simplified version of Twitter that allows you to do more on a larger scale, which makes it perfect for businesses. Hootsuite allows you to manage all of your social media accounts, measure the number of views posts are getting and also lets you schedule posts to automatically post at a certain time. Hootsuite and other social media scheduling platforms are powerful tools and should be used in any business where multiple social media accounts are managed.
- Using any social media platform, tell us how you would leverage it in order to promote the business and increase customer engagement.
Normally, putting the candidate on the spot isn’t necessarily advised, but for this particular instance, you need to know what the candidate has in mind. If they don’t have any strategy in mind, then they aren’t right for your business. This is their chance to show you the homework they’ve done and to show you they can execute an effective strategy for your business. If you have one particular social media platform in mind, you can always tailor the question to ask specifically about that one to see what the candidate is capable of.
Questions About Social Media Marketing
- Do you feel as if there are any up-and-coming social media platforms that we should be looking into?
Any good social media expert has a feel for what upcoming social media platforms may become popular next. While there may not be any that take over in the next few years, it’s always important to stay on top of the technology so you can have an advantage over others.
- What are some of the best practices to use on Twitter?
Hashtags are the number one thing to use on Twitter, whether it be for a business or for personal use.. They not only make your content searchable, but they also allow for you to categorize the tweets you are sending. In addition, mentions are incredibly important as they allow you to respond directly to your customers.
- What are our competitors doing on social media?
Even though they’re competitors, the candidate should have some knowledge of what they are doing on social media. If it’s successful, it can provide you with a strategy that your business can look to implement in the future. While the candidate shouldn’t talk so much about the competitors to the point where it sounds like they’d rather work for them, knowing your competition is always a good thing.
- What is one of your favorite social media campaigns that you have come across?
Social media campaigns are everywhere. If someone is applying to be a social media expert for your business, then it’s safe to assume they’ve seen a campaign and they have a favorite. Ask them about it and why they liked it. This will tell you a little bit about their style and the creative ideas they like best.
- Talk about one of the social media marketing campaigns you have executed and why it was successful.
Ideally, your candidate will have some sort of background and can discuss a campaign that they have executed in the past. However, everyone has to start somewhere, so it’s possible that they don’t have any experience with executing a campaign. No matter the answer, this should give you some valuable insight to the candidate’s philosophies and ideas when it comes to social media.
Managing social media pages for a business is often a daunting task. While it can be filled with plenty of fun opportunities, it’s important to hire someone who can get down to business whenever it’s necessary. By asking these questions to your potential candidates, you will ensure that you only get the best of the best from your talent pool and you’ll hire someone who can help take your business’ social media presence to the next level.