Should I Hire A Social Media Consultant or DIY? Tips for Small Businesses

Hire a social media consultant or do it myself (DIY)? - girl AI and social media matrix | EJP Marketing co


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A common question we’ve received: “When should I hire a social media consultant, or do I handle it in-house?”

When considering these questions, keep in mind buyers’ decision-making trends:

  • 87% of buyers think that social media helps them make shopping decisions.
  • 43% of customers learn about new products through social media networks.
  • 66% of customers buy after seeing other people’s social media posts.
  • 71% of people are more likely to buy something based on social media referrals.

It is important for business owners to have a good plan for their social media content because this helps them get more attention online, engage with their followers, make more sales, and increase their overall ROI. So, when is the right time to hire a social media consultant? 

Here are 8 questions to consider as you’re making this decision:

1. What Are Your Business Needs?

First, define your objectives and your business growth plans. Because your social objectives should reinforce your business goals, here are a few (small sample size) of questions to ask yourself: Do I need to boost brand recognition? Grow an online community? Increase website traffic? Build a sales pipeline from social media? Or position yourself as an industry expert?

Increasing sales, launching a public awareness campaign, partnering with a social media influencer, executing a crisis communications plan, and many more are all common reasons businesses will hire an expert. Understanding your objectives will inform your decision on whether to hire a professional or manage social media in-house.

2. Does Your Website Have an SEO keyword strategy?

Your brand messages, keyword strategy, and content can be repurposed into social media content. An integrated digital marketing consultant will often provide a social media strategy, which can strengthen your overall digital footprint! Did you realize your SEO keyword strategy can support your social media content strategy? This is an area where an integrated marketing consulting firm like EJP can be a good partner.

3. Do You Understand Your Potential Buyer’s Journey?

Understanding your buyer’s journey to make a sale, completing a form, or registering for your event gives you a strategic advantage. Considering 71% of people are more likely to buy something based on social media referrals, it’s key to have a social strategy that meets your target audience where they are and with the right content. Engaging content leads to meaningful results.

Understanding the buyer’s journey is important because it helps businesses understand their customers’ needs, interests, and pain points at each stage of their decision-making process. By understanding the buyer’s journey, businesses can develop targeted marketing tactics and relevant content that can more efficiently reach and engage potential customers.

4. What is Your Skill Set?

Examine your own skills and those of your team. If you possess a strong understanding of social media marketing, along with the time to create content, engage with your audience, and analyze metrics, you might be well-positioned to manage your accounts. Conversely, a specialized consultant might be necessary if these aspects are not your forte.

5. What Is Your Time Commitment?

Social media requires a consistent and responsive approach. Can you commit to regularly updating your profiles, creating quality content, and interacting with your audience? If not, the expertise and dedication of a consultant could ensure your social media presence doesn’t suffer from neglect.

6. What Is Your Budget?

Hiring a social media consultant is an investment. Weigh the cost of this investment against the potential returns and savings in time and resources. If managing social media yourself detracts from other critical business operations or if you lack the expertise for effective social marketing, a consultant could be cost-effective in the long run.

7. What Kind of Social Media Firm Would Be a Good Fit?

Should you decide to hire a consultant, seek out someone who understands your industry and has a proven track record with businesses similar in size and scope to yours. This ensures the consultant can align with your brand voice and business goals.

8. How Much Do You Want to be Involved?

Deciding to work with a consultant doesn’t mean you have to be completely hands-off. Determine how involved you want to be in creating content, strategy development, and engagement practices.

How to find and work with a social media consultant?

If you choose to hire one:

  1. Have an idea of what you want from your new social media partner: Clearly outline what you hope to achieve with your social media efforts.
  2. Research potential consultants: Look for consultants with excellent references and a strong portfolio.
  3. Request proposals: After shortlisting candidates, request detailed proposals outlining how they would address your needs.
  4. Conduct interviews: Meet potential consultants to discuss their strategies and ensure compatibility.
  5. Set expectations: Establish clear expectations regarding deliverables, communication, and performance metrics.
  6. Review agreements: Go through the contractual details thoroughly before signing on.
  7. Collaborate and monitor: Work closely with the consultant and continually monitor the progress to make sure goals are being met.

Hiring a social media consultant can be a strategic move for your business and can more rapidly increase business outcomes. However, managing your social media internally can be rewarding and budget-friendly under the right circumstances. Take the time to make an informed decision that aligns with your business goals and resources. Be sure to check out our social media packages and schedule a free consultation to get to know our team!

Tips For Developing a Social Media Strategy

At EJP, we’ve worked with a few startups and small businesses and understand the decision to sometimes handle your business’ social media needs internally. This is often more likely in the early stages of a business and during investment rounds when funding is uncertain. 

If you choose to do the work internally, here’s an effective approach for crafting content that resonates:

Create Quality Social Media Content

When it’s time to create content, focus on quality over quantity. This is a primary area where a social media consultant can be a good partner for your business. High-resolution images, well-edited videos, and well-crafted text posts that provide value will always stand out. Yes, algorithms favor regular posting, but never at the expense of quality.

Be Authentic and Personable

Share your experiences and insights. The voice behind your content should be relatable and human – something our age group values immensely.

Use Storytelling to Your Advantage

Narratives can make your content more engaging. Share success stories, challenges overcome, and lessons learned. These are tales that can inspire and connect deeply with your audience. By sharing success stories, challenges overcome, and lessons learned, we can create a humanizing connection with our audience. Many people like stories about never giving up and succeeding because they can inspire and motivate others.

Diversify Your Content Types

Use infographics, live videos, podcasts, and interactive posts to engage different audiences and add variety to your feed. Diversifying our content types also allows us to cater to different preferences and interests within our audience. Infographics can convey information quickly and visually, while live videos and podcasts offer a more interactive and personal touch. Interactive posts, such as polls or quizzes, can also encourage engagement and participation from our followers.

Use Analytics & Scheduling Tools

Finally, analyze and adjust. Use analytics to track what works. If a post garners a lot of engagement, dissect why and try to replicate its success. On the flip side, learn from the less successful ones. Analyzing our content performance through analytics is crucial in understanding what resonates with our audience. By identifying patterns in successful posts, we can replicate strategies that work well. Similarly, learning from less successful posts can help us refine our approach and avoid repeating mistakes. Ultimately, creating engaging content is an ongoing process that requires constant evaluation and adjustment. Making engaging content is a continuous effort. Social media management tools like Hootsuite provide support for scheduling posts and measuring analytics.

By implementing these strategies and leveraging our experience, you can foster meaningful connections with your audience and build a loyal following! At EJP, we know that through authentic storytelling, a diverse content portfolio, and leveraging data-driven insights, the world of social media can meet business growth.

Contact us today to learn more about our Social Media Marketing Packages. We know our support can elevate your online presence and power growth for your business. And checkout some of our startup case studies

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