Not all brands can handle social media on their own. Sometimes it’s important for them to outsource this to a social media agency. Social media agencies for their part need to know the services they are supposed to provide to get their client’s rolling. Client’s may ask for a long list of services from an agency. Not everything falls under the social media scope though. Trying to provide everything that a client is asking for can be a problem for a social media agency. You may end up spending considerable resources without getting much from the clients. To help you out, we’ve prepared a list of services that social media agencies should provide. Let’s hear them out.
1. Educating about social
With the buzz around social media, people believe social media to be their magic wand to make them successful. Any client meeting you go to, you cannot escape these magical words.
“I need a viral campaign”
Clients like these are quite common. What you need to offer them is a reality check. Discuss what social media can do for their business. Get these three things done to educate them about social media.
A. Set Expectations
Inform your clients how social media works. Different platforms work differently and the content that you push through has to be modified accordingly. Educate your client how organic and paid social media work. If you do not do this, you will end up taking a client which you’ll regret later on.
B. Services provided by your agency
Your clients may expect you to make short videos and publish. You may not even have a video team. Ensure that you communicate your services effectively. If you’re good at Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, do not take a client who wants you to increase their presence in LinkedIn. Give your client the complete picture to take your relationship forward.
C. Provide Realistic Goals
Do not over-promise and under-deliver. Going overboard to take a client and promising them to paint the town red is a classic blunder many agencies make. What’s more important than getting a client is getting the right client. Ensure that you have educated the client correctly and based on that, set realistic goals.
2. Market Research and Competitor Analysis
Once you have set expectations with your client, you need to give them a plan or a strategy. To get the right strategy, you need to study the following to arrive at the right strategy to take their brand forward.
A. Where are they?
Understand what they have been doing with social media in the past. Use a social media tool for agencies that can give you the performance report of their social profiles. Review their posting schedule, the channels they are active in, their messaging, and the engagement they got in the past.
You can also identify the audience that was interacting the most with their content. Was it the right audience for their brand? Can that be leveraged in some way? These are the questions you need answers to.
B. Competitor Analysis
Apart from analyzing your own performance, an agency has to check what their client’s competitors are up to. Analyze the competitor’s social profiles to gauge their performance. Check the audience that’s interacting with their content, which campaigns were successful, and their publishing schedule. Studying the competition will help you define the social media strategy for your client better.
C. Where you would be in 3 months
Social media will not deliver results immediately. You need to be consistent to build your following organically. Now that your agency would work for the client, their publishing strategy will be consistent. Based on your past experiences and the knowledge you gathered from studying the competition, define a growth plan. Give the client benchmarks that you will be hitting in a quarter as that’s how long it would take to see any change.
D. How to get there
Now that you have the goals decided, get an execution plan. In the next section you’ll see how to outline a social media strategy for your client.
3. Formulate a Social Media Strategy for Your Client
A social media strategy has many facets to it. Give your client a complete overview of how you will execute a strategy suited for their needs.
A. Channels to target
If your client is a B2B company providing IT infrastructure management solutions, you probably do not need a presence on Instagram. Similarly, if you are a retail store selling shoes for women, you need to be on Instagram. Decide which channels are a good fit for your client based on their product. Having a presence on all the social platforms is not going to help anyone.
B. Publishing Strategy
Once you have locked the social channels, you need to get a publishing strategy going. There are a lot of stuff that goes in publishing, so let’s focus on the main points.
1. Publishing Frequency
How often are you going to publish content. If you publish too many times you may come across as spammy. If you’re handling a brand that gives sports updates, you need to publish more often. There is a no one-size-fits-all when it comes to publishing frequency. For example, Inc Magazine publishes around ten to eleven posts per day on Facebook. In comparison, Slack publishes only one or two posts per day. The frequency should ideally be a match between your client’s service/product and the channel you’re agency is publishing to. Identify this by running experiments and verifying their results
2. Publishing Time
Your client’s audience is not going to stay active throughout. Identify the time when they are active on social and publish content in those periods. This will give your client’s brand more impressions and engagement.
Brand new content needs to be shared many times in social to derive maximum engagement. How many times are you going to republish a particular content for your client? Does your agency have the right tools to do this?
4. Social Engagement
Engage with your client’s audience on social. Their client could be asking about their product or resolving an issue they faced. Your agency could convert social media into an active communication channel for your client. Your agency can even set response time benchmarks to gain you client’s trust in your services.
5. Social Monitoring
Social media can be a tool to get leads too. As an agency, you can respond to incoming messages from your client’s profile. You can also get into conversations and promote products and services related to your client. Your agency can bring in qualified leads from social media which can make an impact on your customer’s bottom line.
6. Influencer Outreach
Don’t be like every other social media agency that treats it as a content distribution platform. Go further and promote brands on it. How can you do that? Identify influencers who can endorse your brand or promote your client’s brand online. Use tools like Klout and Buzzsumo to identify them. Initiate conversations and get those influencers onboard. It can make a huge impact to a client’s business.
7. Social Analytics and Reporting
Social media agencies have to give periodic updates to their clients. The report can be anything from performance of the social profiles, to audience demographic analysis. Make sure you choose the right tool for your agency to deliver those awesome reports.
These reports help your client understand what’s working and what’s not. If your reports give them the right insights, you are looking at a very long term partnership with that client.
8. Run Contests
Contests are a fun way to promote a client’s brand. You have to promote the contest in various forums, get people to participate and then build excitement to announce the winners. Depending on the type of contest, the entire duration can be anywhere from a week to a month. You can include contests in your agreement too to drum up your client’s brand.
9. Content guidelines and Content creation
Many social media agencies provide this service. It depends on your staff what kind of content you can deliver to your clients. The content can be images, videos, infographics, articles for the blog, guest posts, website content or funny gifs. This service depends entirely on the direction you want your agency to go in. If you want to handle big brands in the future, it is imperative to have a design and video team with you.
These are some of the services that we think, social media agencies should provide their clients. For agencies apart from providing these services, it is also important to use the right tool to manage. SMhack (that’s us) is a social media tool made for social media agencies. Try it today and let us know how it works for you. If you have any other service that you provide and we’ve missed out in our list, let us know in the comments section and we’ll add it to this list.