How to Build a Powerful Social Media Team

November 19, 2020 Liezel Stephanie Lawagan
a social media team in a collaborative meeting outside the office

Some time ago, many business owners would have laughed at the idea of paying a social media team to maintain their brand’s social profiles. Some of them probably would have scoffed and maybe even said, “My child could do that!”

Look who’s laughing now.

These days, companies—whether big or small—recognize that social media is vital to their brands. It’s not just for publicity anymore, and it’s integral in their marketing efforts. Social media marketing shouldn’t just be an afterthought or side job added to the marketing team’s responsibilities. It needs dedication, care, and a unique set of skills. That’s why building your social media team needs just as much care and attention as any other marketing role.

To build a stellar social media management team for your company, though, there are certain things you should consider. How many people do you need to hire? What specific skills are you looking for? Those are the kinds of questions you’ll be facing.

Let us help guide you through it all step by step.

Building The Social Media A-Team For Your Brand

Social media marketers’ skills are focused on understanding and leveraging the ever-changing currents in the social media world. They do strategy development, content creation, community engagement, data analysis, and so much more. And more often than not, they juggle multiple responsibilities all at once. This can be not very clear for those who aren’t that familiar with how social media works for brands. Here are some things to consider to make it all clearer.

#1: Assess Your Current Business Situation

First, look at your business from a general perspective and study the factors that may affect your decision about building your team.

  • Budget: your budget dictates how ambitious you could be with your social media team. It tells you how many people you can hire. It also makes it clear what tools you can afford for them to use.
  • Resources: your team will need tools and other resources to maximize their skills and work efficiently. Having these resources can help increase their productivity and also allow you to hire fewer people.
  • Workforce: before you start looking outside, check within your existing workforce if anyone is interested or capable of doing the job. Everyone can pitch in a little of their time to maintain your social media if everyone agrees.

#2: Define Your Goals

It’s not enough to say, “I want social media to boost my business” because there are so many directions that can go. Be more specific and determine the specific reasons why you need a social media team. It would keep the team on the same track as the rest of the company, and it will also help you determine the right hires, the suitable team size, and the appropriate structure.

Some specific goals you can aim to include increasing revenue, lead generation, traffic, engagement, and brand awareness. You can also use social media for community building, public relations, hiring, social listening, and research.

#3: Determine How Many People You Need

There’s no ideal size for a social media team. It simply varies on the size of the business and their needs. Most small businesses have one or two social marketers. Some mid-sized companies have three to five people. Enterprises commonly have a whole team of 11 or more people solely dedicated to maintaining and keeping their social media moving and growing.

No matter how big or small your company is, the number of hires you’re going to make will largely depend on the factors we discussed earlier. The more budget you have, the more important social media’s role is to your company, and the bigger your goals, the more people you’ll need. If you have more resources to help make the work easier and more efficient, though, the fewer people you’ll need.

#4: Understand What Skills Your Social Media Team Needs

Sometimes, one person can fill in for various roles in a social media team, especially if the company is still small, and their social media needs aren’t too overwhelming. As the company gets bigger, though, their social media needs increase as well. At that point, it might be wise to set certain roles for different people for efficiency and productivity. Here are the five most common roles in a social media team.

  • Social Media Manager

Social media managers are like one-person social media teams. They often have skills and knowledge of all the other team roles, and if you’re looking to hire just one person, they’re the right one for the job. More often than not, though, social media managers take the lead in strategy and planning. In small teams, they could also be responsible for managing social media profiles, publishing content, and listening.

  • Content Creator

Content creators take off the content burden from social media managers. They specialize in creating content like blog posts, images, and videos. They are also often on top of industry news and trends to use it to drive the creative direction of their content.

  • Paid Media Specialist

These people are your advertisers, and they take care of your ads on any platform like Facebook and Instagram. They understand these platforms clearly, and they know how to work your brand in each one. They also analyze the numbers and transform them into actions that can boost their overall success.

  • Analyst

While your advertisers have a good grasp of numbers, it’s your analysts who can really make sense of the raw numbers and reports such as click-through rates, conversions, revenue, engagement rates, and traffic. They’ll know if your strategies are working, and they can provide recommendations based on these numbers if they’re not.

  • Community Manager

Community managers are more involved with your social media’s social aspect, meaning your audience and customers. They’re primarily responsible for replying to comments and inquiries, listening out for relevant social media conversations and taking advantage of them, and organizing social events like Facebook lives and such. They’re often the face and voice of the company.

#5: Decide on the Structure of Your Team

Having a structure would allow your team to work much more smoothly. It also avoids any confusion on the extent of their responsibilities and tasks. Here are some of the most common structures you can decide on:

  • Centralized: a standalone team
  • Organic: a free-for-all arrangement in which no one department manages or coordinates social media efforts.
  • Holistic: everyone in the company contributes to the company’s social media in various ways.
  • Hub and Spoke: a central team works and coordinates with other departments in the company.
  • Dandelion or Multiple Hub and Spoke: one main social media team in the company works with other smaller social media teams of the different departments.

Building an Effective Social Media Team: The Takeaway

Putting together a stellar social media team is no easy work, especially considering that the social media profession is still relatively new. Team members would often have hybrid roles, and responsibilities among them might often overlap. The key is to create balance among the different roles and to avoid burning out the team. It’s also essential to have a clear mission and thorough agenda to direct their efforts.

With that said, each company needs a different team, so it’s only expected to have different ways to build and structure your social media team. Simply play by what you need.

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