How to Choose a Social Media Firm
Being that we are a unique firm specializing in Celebs, Athletes, Music Industry & mid size companies to Fortune 500 size companies and focus on aggressive and advanced campaigns alot of the time we find our selves having to recommend other smaller companies to other SEO & Social media firms. I usually personally spend quite a bit of time trying to educate these companies on what to look for and how to sniff through the B.S that most firms & their sales people spew. It blows my mind as to not only how many so called over night SEO & Social Media experts pop up over night, but how virtually NONE of them even practice what they preach.
Listen, to me it’s common sense. If you’re a mechanic and you say you’re the best at tuning cars, but when I see you pull out of your shop your car you drive is smoking & backfiring then I’m guessing you’re really not the best mechanic are ya? Same applies to Social Media & Search Engine Optimization. SEO is going to be alot tougher for that average person or company to do their due diligence and will require an entire in-depth post on it’s own, which I will try to get to at some point.
Social Media to me is pretty simple to analyze and atleast do a basic qualification to determine who is the best Social media agency or firm for your company.
Using Twitter as an example platform here are some things to look at
- Does the social media company have a custom design for their page i.e a background and unique icon/photo
- How many Followers do they have? (more on this below see Follower Ratios)
- How many people are they following? (more on this below see Follower Ratios)
- What kind of things do they Tweet? What is the content of their discussions
- When was the last time they Tweeted
- How often do they Tweet?
- Do they engage with people?
1. It’s important to BRAND your page, it’s what represents your culture. If a social media company doesn’t have their own page branded with a custom design and a smart easy to use user photo they probably don’t really get it.
2 & 3 How many followers. Here is where it gets interesting and many people don’t get it. So you may be scoping out a few social media companies and seeing different levels of followers and audiences they have built. One may have 3422 followers. one may have 722, one may have 97,232, and one may have 382,622 followers. But here are a couple of things you need to look at.
- Are their followers real people? Believe it or not people think they can go out and buy followers and that for some reason it will benefit them in social media. FALSE. 99.9% of the time you buy followers they are absolutely fake Bot accounts. These are account with real looking picture, real looking bios, they may or may not be following a bunch of people, and there are a handful of tweets that usually make no sense. To the average Joe it may be difficult to pick these out but after doing it for awhile you get good at picking them out. These types of followers are an ABSOLUTE waste of money, time and effort. They do nothing to bolster your social media reach or engagement which is the purpose behind having a social media account. Social media companies that do this are a sham, and more than likely they will flood your account with the same garbage and claim victory and greatness. What good is 100k fake followers if they are not real people who can see, read your messages, reply, ask you questions or retweet your tweets? Worthless. Steer clear of any company doing this.
- FOLLOW RATIO This is something really overlooked and not often understood. So say we are looking at Social media firm X and wow they have 382,622 followers and they look like they are mostly or all real people! WOW these guys or girls know what they are doing right? Well how many people are they following? Oh.. They are following 412,264 people. So what exactly does that mean? It means they have a terrible follow ratio. What it means is all they did was go out and follow as many accounts and random people as they could possibly find in hopes of getting followed back. See twitter is a funny thing, I’d somewhere between 40%-70% of the time when you follow someone they follow you back. Not because they are interested in who you are, what you do for a living, or the things you have to say. They follow back because for some reason people believe or have been led to believe it’s proper social media ettiquete to “FOLLOW BACK” and if they don’t they will be unfollowed by you. This is partially true many people troll Twitter following people, then tweeting them “hey I followed you, follow me back” so they follow them back in hopes of keeping that follow. To me this is another sham. What you want is real people who choose to follow you because they are interested in what you have to say, who you are, or what you do etc. A social media company or so called social media expert that goes out and follows 400k people so that they get alot of followers doesn’t get it. These are followers who could care less about your message or engaging with you, they simply did the follow, follow back crap. I follow only people who i find inspirational, interesting, who are in my industry, I like, am friends with, or I think I can learn something from. Stay away from companies & social media gurus who have bad follow ratios. If they are following 20k people and have 100k followers fine.. not terrible.. but I look at it like this If someone has 100k followers and are following 80k people, they really only have about 20k people who choose to follow them on their own not because of a follow back. Of course there are exceptions to this, but it’s a good general way of looking at it. One last note on this subject there is also a method that shady people use called follow, unfollow. They follow a bunch of people, wait for them to follow them back then they unfollow them so their ratio looks good. Another shady low level tactic. – end rant
4. Look at what they are tweeting about! If all they tweet is I just went to the bathroom, I just ate a sammie, or hey @soandso follow me back; then they really don’t understand quality content & engagement. You want to look for people who are thought leaders in their industries, people who provoke though, inspire & motivate, ask questions, answer questions or simply discuss things related to their industry and what they do. Makes sense right?
5. Pretty simple if it’s been 3 days or 3 weeks or 3 months since they last tweeted or made a status update depending on their fav social media platform … Then they aren’t all that social, or plugged in. You want a social media firm or social media consultant that gets it and is plugged in. Always engaging, always involved in social media. Look for atleast some participation on a daily basis.
6. The more they tweet, engage & discuss the more social they are and the more they get it. Now you don’t want some maniac that tweets 287 times a day when they really should probably be working on their clients social media strategies, but you definitely want a firm or someone who is ACTIVE!
7. ENGAGE! This goes along with many of the other stances and comments I’ve made. But look at if they are just talking to themselves and tweeting meaningless stuff just to tweet and look like they are active, or if they are actually engaging with people, having conversations, being a resource, provoking discussions or tweets headed their way etc
Bottom line is if a So called Social media expert or company doesn’t practice what they preach what makes you think they know how to or will do it for you at a high level, and ethically? Do you due diligence