How To Identify A Good Social Media Manager
From A Bad One

There are many frogs out there when it comes to social media management. These frogs I’m talking about are the ones who are offering to manage your social media presence for $500 or less. These people have multiple clients. They are going to be a waste of your time and money. They are not invested in making your social media success.    


In this article, I’m going to point out seven red flags you should be paying attention to when you’re looking to hire a social media person. In an earlier post, I discussed signs that it’s time for you to hire a social media manager so head over to that post here if you haven’t already read it to make sure that you are ready to hire a social media manager.   Why am I sharing this information with you? Why am I out in my competition or other social media managers I know? I’m saying these things and sharing this information with you because so many people can’t tell. Moreover, when they finally realize what’s going on, it’s too late.   Like any profession there are people at different stages and different levels of expertise and their prices will generally reflect that, and that’s perfectly fine. It’s great to have a lot of passionate people who want to learn and grow as an individual and a business owner and a marketer. It’s a sign of a healthy growing industry.   If the person you’re looking to hire to manage your social media Meet every single one of these red flags, or even just two, it’s time to look for someone else.  

#1: They don’t tend to their own social

  something that drives me up the wall is when a social media or marketing company is trying to gain someone’s business, but they don’t even manage their social media well.   If you’re thinking of hiring a social media manager, you need to go and make sure that they are posting to their social media accounts.  They are attending to the people who engage with their social media accounts. If their account has not been published to and is a super long time, even if it’s just been a week, that is a big huge giant red flag. Social media managers need to make tending to their accounts a top priority.   It would be like walking into a toy store in seeing toys all over the place and empty shelves, you don’t want to shop there right? The same applies to look for someone to manage your social media for you. If they can’t even keep up with a few posts each week on their social media accounts, what makes you think they’re going to be able to do that for you?  

#2: They have WAY too many clients

  A good social media manager can handle and upwards of five or seven accounts. If they’re over 12, they do not have the capability of taking on any more clients. However, again, this red flag is a little bit harder to understand. You can ask these questions of your potential social media manager and then gauge their ability to manage your social media based on their answers.   Here are the questions you should be asking the social media manager you are interviewing:   How many clients do you currently have?   About how many hours do you dedicate to one social media client?   What kind of success have you brought to your current clients?   Do you think social media is one part of marketing that can function on its own? Alternatively, do you think that social media plays a significant role in an overall marketing strategy?   How can we “beat” a social media platform algorithm?   What do you understand about content management?   When it comes to a successful social media account, what defines it as being successful?  

#3: They charge you $500 or less for monthly management

  You’re preaching to the choir when you tell me that you have a tight business budget. My business is the same way! So when it comes to looking at the extra cost too, or hiring on contractors, or hiring a new employee, I’m very cautious about where I spend my money.   With that said though, you should never pay someone peanuts because it is saving you a buck. Social media is an investment. The average time that it takes for someone to execute a social media strategy successfully is anywhere between seven and 10 hours each week, and that is super part-time.   Social media is a labor-intensive job, at least for those who do it well. Social media management includes daily posting, content creation/curation, community engagement strategy, Constant follow up on comments and messages, and so much more.   I don’t know anyone anymore who would work for $500 or less each month to execute a social media campaign. However, if this is still a path you’re willing to go down, know that you get what you pay for.  

#4: They speak to you in jargon and don’t explain what it means

  I’ll be the first to admit that sometimes I can spout off jargon to a client, but that’s because there’s no other way to define or explain a concept I’m describing to them. The difference between a good social media manager and a bad social media manager when it comes to using jargon in discussions is that your good social media manager will explain in as much detail as possible what that jargon means.   You are not an expert in social media just because you know the word pixel or conversion. You’re right when thinking about how easily social media can be. It isn’t rocket science. The principles around social media management are simple, and it is straightforward to articulate that in simple terms.  

#5: They use the word expert constantly

  Some people are experts, and some people claim to be experts. There are tons of PR agencies marketing agencies, and social media manager is a professor a full understanding of social media and how it works. However, they have no idea how to grow your small audience and engage them.   Social media never sleeps. It is constantly changing. Moreover, an excellent social media professional will tell you that they are continually learning and testing out new things. I am not comfortable calling myself an expert. I know a lot, and I mean a lot, about social media. However, considering how often social media changes, I’ll never be an expert in social media. The same goes for every other social media manager, strategist, director that’s out there in the world.   So if you’re looking for someone who is super knowledgeable when it comes to social media and you are not an expert in social media, it makes it a little difficult to decipher truth from life. So instead what you can do is gauge the level of passion someone might have. Ask them questions about the types of testing that they do. Ask them to demonstrate what they understand about social media.   Someone who is willing to give you everything they’ve got and dedicate themselves to growing your brand shows that they’re not just in it for the paycheck. They are doing social media because they genuinely love it.  

#6: Their following, and followers numbers are super out of whack

  We’ve heard it all before; it’s not about having thousands of followers. While this is true, a good social media manager should have a decent number of followers. Moreover, a good level of engagement from those followers.   Social media numbers aren’t everything, but realistically that’s what people are hiring social media managers to do, grow their follower numbers.   A good social media manager will set attainable goals. They will also help keep you the business owner and check when it comes to trying to fix unattainable ones. Once upon a time, I had a client who hired me on to manage their Instagram account. They had never established an Instagram account before. Upon the first month of creating their Instagram account, they ask me to provide 10,000 followers to that Instagram account immediately. Anyone in the industry will tell you that it is nearly impossible to grow an account from 0 to 10,000 in 30 days. Anyone who will Willingly commit to that kind of insane goal doesn’t know what they’re doing.   Another thing to look out for when it comes to a bad social media manager is if they have 4000 followers, and they are following over 6000 people. This means that they are either using some bot to gain followers, they are utilizing some shady tactics, or they are just not managing the account well.   Huge followings can be incredibly deceiving. I know of accounts that I have grown to have a large audience, but that took MONTHS of work. It’s easy to tell the effectiveness of a social media account looking at the age of some of their posts. You can also look at how old someone’s mind is and determine the time it took for them to get there in terms of their following.   The safest thing to do when you’re looking at your potential social media managers social media accounts is to look at how they’re engaging with their followers; are they passionate? Are they engaging people? Are they showing that they want to help?   If you look at someone’s social media account and you have some weird uneasy feeling, follow that instinct.  

#7: they wear too many hats

  I’ll go ahead and admit this upfront; I know a lot about a lot when it comes to general marketing. Also, I do have some clients that I do more than social media for. However, our main game, instead of my main game, is social media. I am first in for most knowledgeable and specialized in social media. I make that as clear as day. So I do have some clients that I do more than social media for. However, our main game, instead of my main game, is social media. I am first in for most knowledgeable and specialized in social media. I make that as clear as day.   Because I like to help people understand that social media is just one part of the marketing wheel, I want to make sure that I have a deep, Or as in-depth as possible, Understanding of all things digital marketing. I try to keep up with information on the website management, the best platforms for hosting website, email marketing, Facebook ads, Google ad words, and a ton of other digital marketing elements. However, it isn’t easy. So what I do with all of this information I know about digital marketing, I incorporate that idea into a social media strategy.   When it comes down to hiring the right social media manager, you need to make sure they understand how important having a blog is, how important it is to have a functioning website – because you can’t very well promote anything if there’s nowhere to drive traffic. Having some email system is essential when it comes to your marketing strategy, but it’s not a make or breaks element of doing anything on social media.   The critical thing to look out for when it comes to working with a social media Manager is that they have an understanding of how important digital marketing is as a whole, but they are a master social.   When it comes to my team, We have a handful of individuals that we work with when it comes to developing a new website, when it comes to creating an email strategy, and incorporating any public relations type strategy. I and some of the other women I work with at mother of marketing are first in for most social media managers.   _________________________   I hope that you have found all of this information as helpful as possible. If you’re a social media manager or professional and you’re frustrated that I’m calling you out… It’s because I want to end some of the confusion between successful social media and social media that is a waste of time.   If you are newer to the social media world and are just getting your feet wet, this post isn’t about you; you can use the information in this post to keep your self and check. I want my clients to work with the most passionate people possible, whether that’s me or not.   The social media industry is highly unregulated, and it makes working with clients who don’t understand social media that much more difficult because they don’t have a great concept of what it means to work with a quality company.   If you’re reading this post and realizing, “oh my god this is me,” it’s time to make some changes. I’m happy to be the person that lens a helping hand to help you get your head on the right.  

About Sarah

With nearly 9 years of social media marketing expertise, Sarah brings a wealth of knowledge, new and interesting strategies, and a whole new way to live your life as a working parent.

Working with Sarah has been such an incredible learning experience. It’s provided me the tools and support I’ve always needed to get next level with my business.

Terese Brenneman

Fitness Coach, Be A Lion

Need A Little Social Media Coaching?

We all need a little help from time to time. Why? Well, we don’t know what we don’t know, and I can teach you what you don’t know. No one wants to be a Jon Snow. Let me know how I can help you with whatever problem you might be having with social media by filling out the email below.

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