The Different Types of Social Media Experts

Written by Nick Stamoulis

Social Media Social Networking Technology Connection ConceptAre you thinking of hiring a social media expert to manage your social media marketing campaign? If so, make sure you are working with the right kind of social media expert that is a good fit for your business. Not every type of “social media” expert will have the same set of skills, which means that there is a lot to choose from when deciding whom to hire.

Here are five types of social media experts that you can choose from when deciding which one is right for you:

Reformed PR Person

The reformed PR social media expert recognizes that traditional PR is on its way out and is being replaced by/morphed into social media. Publishing online press releases (while great from an SEO link building perspective is great) on social networks isn’t enough; companies and individuals can connect with journalists directly via Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and Google+ and old school PR is being forced to adopt a transparent and instantaneous persona. While they may not be the most tech savvy, the great thing about a reformed PR social media expert is that they are used to connecting with an audience and talking to the public, which is exactly what social media marketing is all about. They have great writing and communication skills and know how to spin a story to get people talking about your brand.

Right Out of College

Expertise can only come with time. And while recent college grads may have had a personal Facebook page from when Facebook was only open to college students (remember those days?!), that doesn’t mean they know how to leverage social media for a business. Yes, they are more likely to be comfortable with the rapidly changing environment that is social media and be on the cutting edge of the latest developments, but they might not have the skills to turn that into real value for your business. A recent college grad can undoubtedly manage all your social profiles with ease, but can they take your social media marketing to the next level?

Traditional Offline Marketer

5 Signs Youre Over Thinking Your SEO StrategyThese members of the Old Guard of marketing were the last to get on the social media marketing wagon and may not be as comfortable with the fast-paced growth and development of the industry. The traditional offline marketer probably decided to become a social media expert because it’s what you’re “supposed” to do to stay relevant and valuable to your company. While traditional offline marketing is still incredibly valuable, having a traditional marketer as your social media expert is a bit like brining a refurbished Model T to the 2013 Detroit Auto Show. It may look great and work just fine, but it’s a little out of it’s element. While it’s okay to embrace a “new style” of marketing, many traditional marketers have a difficult time truly letting go of their former sensibilities.

Social SEO People

(I would put myself in this category.) Social SEO people recognize that social media is becoming an integral part of SEO. The search engines are looking at social signals as a valuable ranking factor, so incorporating social media into your existing SEO and content marketing campaign seems like the next reasonable step. Chances are a social SEO person is looking at social media as a long term process. They aren’t going to get your Facebook Fan page 1,000 Likes in 2 days because those numbers don’t really mean anything; quality engagement is more important than quantity. Social SEO people are effective at encouraging long term growth, helping their clients build a solid brand, and building a list of followers that are eager to engage with their brand.

True Social Media People

These social media experts live and breathe their industry. It’s what they love to do and they are very, very good at it. They’ve worked with big brands, little brands and everything in between and have a proven track record of social media marketing success. They understand that social media marketing is not a one-size-fits-all campaign and customize each campaign based on the needs, wants and strengths of each company they work with.

Keep in mind that social media marketing is a very new medium. It’s hard to have true “experts” in a field that is so new and constantly evolving. Social media is really only a few years old and it looks completely different now than it did four or five years ago. You want to work with a social media expert that is able to adapt to the shifting environment and go with the flow.

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