To use social media to its full potential to build up an audience for your brand and connect with your target market you need to have an efficient, highly productive social media team. Social media is fast-paced, but also a very public way to communicate, so your team needs to be able to react quickly and represent your brand in the best way at all times.
We take a look at how to streamline your in-house social media team to maximize your social channels and minimize mistakes.
To streamline your in-house social media team you need to review and assess how they are currently working. You want to understand how much time is spent on each task, process, or type of work.
Use time tracking software like Clockify to understand your team’s schedule and get a clear idea of how much time is spent on day to day admin like answering emails. You’ll also see how much is spent on essential tasks like writing and scheduling posts, responding to support messages, engaging, and reporting. Setting it up is pretty straightforward — you can learn exactly how here — and using a time tracking tool will allow you to record this accurately without creating extra work for your social media team and disrupting their workflow.
Monitor your team’s activity for a few weeks and you’ll be able to understand which tasks and work take up most of their time. You’ll see where they get held up or experience blockers, and which unimportant, or repetitive tasks take too long. With that information, you’ll be able to identify ways in which to streamline your team, reduce or automate certain tasks, and increase their output.
Branding is a key part of marketing, in fact, research has found that consistent presentation of a brand has increased revenue by 33%. So it’s essential that your social media successfully conveys your brand to your audience.
To do this you need to be consistent in what your team is posting, and the best way to do this is to create a set of guidelines for your social media team. This will provide requirements and expectations for your team so that they know exactly what they should be posting at all times.
The style guide should be based closely on your brand guidelines and cover the tone of voice, language, terms, and phrases that they should use and ones to avoid. Every message and post that you share needs to have the same tone of voice as your website, your emails, and the rest of your business.
It will also outline the process your team should follow for all customer support messages and questions that you receive on social media.
Creating a set of guidelines for your social media team to follow will streamline how they create content and handle engagement on each platform.
An in-house social media team can cross over with a lot of other departments – sales, marketing, and customer support. So to streamline your team it’s important that each person has a clearly defined role and responsibilities. This will help them to know exactly what they should be doing, and when they need to talk to someone else in the team or outside of the team.
It’s important to prioritize customer service as well as marketing goals in your social media team because 73% of consumers say that their customer experience is a key factor in their purchasing decisions.
For example, your team might be handling creating the content for social media in line with marketing campaigns, but also responsible for monitoring and responding to customer support on social channels. If you have the capacity and the volume of messages, you should assign separate members of the team to deal with marketing and customer support on social media.
This will help avoid any confusion about who should be dealing with what as things crop up throughout the day. By making them clearly defined roles, you’ll also be able to give specific training to improve the team’s skills in each area.
Better project management
Effectively managing workloads and improving your project management is going to be another key part of streamlining your in-house social media team. Project management ensures that everyone understands what they need to be working on and when so that deadlines are met and your team is always focused on work that’s a priority.
When your social media team is starting a new project or campaign, break it down into smaller goals with deadlines, and individual tasks, so that you have one overall list of every single thing that needs to be done. By breaking the work down you’ll be able to get a much better idea of how you’re progressing through the campaign with clear points to review and report on your results.
Consider using task management software like GetBusy to help streamline your team’s workflow. You can learn more about it here, but essentially it will make it quick and easy to break down projects into tasks and assign them out to individuals in your team with clear deadlines. Each member of your team will be able to see a prioritized list of the tasks they need to complete so that everyone is always working on the right thing at the right time.
You can also use a task management tool to optimize and streamline regular processes and workflows. For example, you can create a set of recurring tasks to get sign off for each month’s social media posts.
Assign a task to a team member to research and write the post. Once this is done they can attach the document and assign the task to whoever needs to approve them with a deadline. This can then be assigned to the person who needs to schedule the posts for publishing.
Set your workflows up as templates to ensure that they are done the same way each time and you can streamline the process. Using an online task manager can make this very easy to implement.
Planning is key to streamlining any team, but especially for social media teams. With your goals in place, you need a clear plan for the work that you’re doing to achieve them. Don’t waste time on writing and scheduling posts manually, they should be written in bulk for at least a couple of weeks at a time, if not months.
Use a social media content calendar to provide a clear overview of your deadlines, campaigns, and key events that will inform your social media posts. This will save your team time when trying to create content. With blocks of social media posts written out, use a scheduling tool like Buffer to automatically publish your posts according to when you schedule them — learn more here.
You’ll also be able to track engagements with your post and mentions of your brands on social media. Your team can then set aside a certain amount of time each day for responding and engaging with followers and other users on social media. Plus they should be ready to post about the latest news and announcements in your industry.
Using Buffer also gives you access to insights about the best time of day to post your content so that it performs better. You can set up an automated schedule for the best times of day for your accounts to post. This can then be worked into your social media team’s daily workflow.
Clear communication can help improve collaboration and ensure that everyone is on the same page and always working together. Review how your social-media team currently communicates with each other, especially if they are all working remotely.
If they’re using a mix of different communication methods then try to organize these for specific purposes. For example, use email for communicating with clients or sending out final documents to other people in your business.
Use an instant messaging tool like Slack for internal discussions to organize your team’s communications. For your social media team you can set up specific chat channels for different clients or projects to keep a clear record of all conversations. All your messages will be searchable so you can find anything you need quickly.
Before the meeting, make sure to have a meeting agenda and disseminate it to the team. A good meeting agenda template should set down the goals, timeframe, and flow of the meeting. It makes sure that everyone is on the same page and keeps the meeting organized and productive.
When your team conducts meetings either in person or via video call, make sure one person takes notes and shares them with the other person and the rest of the team if applicable. You’ll always have a record of what’s been discussed to refer back to and everyone will be clear about the outcomes of each meeting or conversation.
You should also use a cloud-based system like Google Drive to store your social media team’s documents. It makes it easier to create, share, and edit documents to enable better collaboration. And anyone in the team can access what they need from anywhere at any time.
With clear goals, planning, better project management, and the right tools you can streamline your in-house social media team so that they can work more efficiently and focus on creating content that connects with your audience and engaging on social media to grow your following.