One in three business executives want to spend less time on social media. Most report, spending up to three hours per day on the social media sites. Others spend more. Small business owners report that they spend up to 21 hours per week on social media platforms. While that seems overwhelming, it is perfectly understandable and why you need a social media VA.
Across the globe, adults admit to spending more than three hours per day with social media giants. A recent report from CNN shows, teens spend more than nine hours per day online. These are normal people who just get on to update their status and before they know it they are clicking on sites and chatting with friends and checking out videos and advertisements. Spending time on social media may be too much for you, so you need a social media VA.
If you are a business person, trying to use social media to build your brand, you are going to be even more diligent about checking and rechecking your site and responding to every inquiry. Before you know it, social media has eaten away a large part of your day and has merited little in return. Still, it is a necessary evil that must be entertained in today’s market. So, how can we free ourselves? With the use of a social media VA.
Planning and time tracking
Social media is an important part of your business if cultivated properly. However, in order to work with social media, (and not let it work you) you need a plan. Using your virtual assistant to do the leg work (or finger work) to determine your plan of action is a wise choice. But before you hand over the passwords to the social media VA, be sure you have your time tracking system active. You cannot control the social media dragon, without controlling the time anyone spends on a platform. Having your virtual assistant do the grunt work is a financially smart move as long as it does not consume all of their time. You must have a current time tracking system in effect for real-time tracking of all of the actions of your physical or virtual staff. A great resource is Clockspot. They are highly rated, cost effective and easy to use.
Social media planning
The first order of business is to identify where your target audience spends their online hours. When it comes to business, Twitter is a must-have presence in all businesses because it casts a wide net. So even if Twitter is not your platform of choice, it should be part of the overall plan. Your virtual assistant must identify where your target audience is and build your presence there. If your audience is middle-aged, Facebook is a good platform. Professionals and business people tend to lean toward Linkedin. Younger people spend more time on Instagram, Twitter, and Snapchat (to name a few) there are many platforms, so choose the most important and grow them. Once you have the best platform working for you, you can add more platforms. Do not waste time trying to be everywhere at once. Instead, find your audience and connect with the sites they connect with. Follow the groups they are in and troll the message boards where they communicate.
The VA duties
Train your virtual assistant to behave like you. To speak the same language and to portray your personality. Show him or her what you expect and once they understand, let them do it.
Their duties should include:
- Monitoring and updating the social media sites daily.
- Communicating with you about questions from web clients and providing prompt answers.
- Finding images, videos, and quotes to post and share.
- Use sites like Google alerts or mentions.net to keep up with every message left.
- Never let an angry message go unaddressed, (it will grow out of control before you know it).
- Manage connections on sites and keep up with ones that should be released.
These duties may sound easy, but it is difficult to keep your social media site current, entertaining, and engaging so that your audience returns and shares. This is a massive undertaking.
We are not suggesting that you never check your social media sites. That would be careless. This is your brand and even a misunderstanding can cause an unintentional turn that will affect your business. Build your relationship with your virtual assistant and track the time, money, and effort you are dedicating to the project. Keep it going and keep it balanced.