Just because your social media pro is an expert at the “ins and outs” of how social media platforms work (or how to hack them) doesn’t mean that your company is going to have success with social media. Why? Your pro needs to have good marketing common sense too. If social media is a bigger and more engaging bullhorn, you must have a more experienced and polished barker spreading your message. And, surprisingly, experience isn’t only valued in the number of campaigns that pro has managed. The value is truly measured in what exceptional skills they bring to your organization. Here’s what to look for when hiring a solid social media pro.

1.      Critical thinking – The person can apply their creative marketing savvy and problem solving skills to social media. This includes figuring out who the audience is on various platforms, what’s most important to those audiences (per platform), and how best to deliver the content (ie. tone, style, type of content, hashtags, etc.).

2.      Presentation skills – Most social media pros are good at rolling up the numbers – and there are plenty of tools to help them do that too – but, there are few who can distill that information down for you, your Executives, and Board Members as it relates to your bottom line.

3.      Maturity – Sometimes content from employees, customers, or partners doesn’t get posted as you would have hoped. So, it’s key for your social media pro to learn how to pause, re-evaluate, and think about how to make best of an uneasy situation. In rare cases, crisis communications practices are needed.

4.      Collaboration - While your pro may be at the helm of your social media program, there are other people in your organization who will have good ideas when it comes to what to post onto social, where to post it, and how to post it. Some staffers may be worth listening to or watching on social, especially if they are on the front line with your stakeholders at conferences and events.

5.      Adaptability – Results don’t always turn out the way we hope. But, a good social media pro will know how to learn from pitfalls and figure out new ways to re-engage with your audiences.

6.      They get you and your business – First, they need to understand what you value in your marketing organization and how you’ve been communicating that upstream. Second, they need to have a good understanding of your business so that they can draw content from your marketing that is in align with your business objectives at a cadence that doesn’t exhaust your audiences.

7.      They use social media for their business – It’s not good enough that they use social media personally. They have to understand what’s at stake when using social for a business, how to engage with stakeholders from publishing content to responding to inquiries across platforms, and continually gently pushing themselves (and their teammates) to do better.

What additional attributes do you think a social media pro needs to have for producing better social media results? Let me know in the comments below.

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