Outsourcing online jobs is no longer new. So many website and business owners choose this option because it is much more cost-effective, provided they partner with a very reliable and competent staff leasing company.
To say that the success of social media outsourcing is dependent on the skills and reliability of the outsourcing company alone is not correct, though. Just like any partnership, both the client and the service provider have responsibilities that must be carried out in order for a job to be done. There are SOP’s that clients need to be aware of because if they neglect to do them, the results can be catastrophic for their website and/or business.
So what are the things you SHOULD NOT do if you are outsourcing for social media?
1. Choose The First Outsourcing Company That Comes Up In Search
Being exposed to the principles of Search Engine Optimization and knowing Google’s stance on delivering the best results on the first pages of the SERPs, many get the impression that the outsourcing companies on the first page must be the best in the industry. Even if that were true, compatibility with your needs, work attitudes, and budget will also matter greatly. Thus, choosing the first big, social media outsourcing company that comes up of the search results would not be a wise move.
Ask for a rundown of their services first and request for an initial interview. After all, you will hire them to work for you. Consider other options too and weigh the strengths and weaknesses of each staff leasing company until you find one that fits most perfectly with your criteria.
2. Neglect Checking the Service Provider’s Client List
There is a reason why outsourcing companies proudly show the URLs and names of their former clients. If you want to see concrete examples of their previous work, check out their client list. More importantly, you can personally contact those past clients and pick their brains about the service provider. Get a more candid review about their services and the quality of their work. If you don’t, you may not know about, say, the company’s penchant for adding more working hours than agreed on and charging a bigger fee as a result.
3. Make The Budget Flexible
Now this is certainly one move that can prove debilitating to any venture. Always, always establish a budget. Make it clear that that’s the only amount you can spend for the project. Since it is always good business practice to have emergency money set aside, establish another maximum budget on top of your original budget.
Most social media outsourcing services charge by the hour. Let your service provider know about your budget so that the outsourced staff can adjust their timetables and be able to accomplish the set goals within the time frame permitted by your budget.
4. Give Vague, Unspecific Instructions
One thing that can guarantee the failure of social media outsourcing is failing to give specific instructions to the outsourced team of managers. You cannot leave everything up to them when it comes to social media activities. They can provide the technical skills, but remember that they do not know your business as well as you do. Laying down the rules is very important here.
You must be aware of the image you want target customers to see, so be specific on what type of approach you want your service provider to take when interacting with the public. Considering that customers have a penchant for raising questions and leaving feedback on social media, have an SOP for inquiries that should be delegated to customer service and for comments (whether they are negative and positive).
Vague instructions will give a social media outsourcing company more elbow room for mistakes. You can’t afford for that to happen. A gaffe or a wrong announcement to the customers can result in a loss, and you will be just as accountable for it as the outsourced company.
5. Be Lax On Communication
Another bane of social media outsourcing is lack of communication. Again, just because you outsource doesn’t mean you should just leave the service provider to do its thing without your knowledge. For instance, there have been clients who did not insist on weekly updates or regular online conferencing. As a result, the sense of urgency was lost and they were pushed down to third or fourth priority by their service providers.
Don’t limit your avenues for communication. Give your email address, Skype or messenger ID, and even your phone number if the company is not based overseas relative to where you are. Give them no reason to not contact you if ever important matters arise. Keeping communication channels constantly open also allows you to do damage control quickly if ever something bad happens.
Now that you know these five mistakes in social media outsourcing that can badly impact your business or website, make a conscious effort to avoid them today and in the future.