An in-house designation for social media marketing – how many companies really have it? The client wants to hand their social media work over to someone and yet they want to control everything that goes out on the social channels. This major clash with keeping it hassle free and yet controlled for the client can be allayed just be hiring a dedicated social media manager! Some clear advantages of having an in-house social media manager,

1. keeps the company well ready to strategize and implement social media ideas on the Go!
Brands often have quickly planned events, launches, celebrity presence – these can’t always have a planned out social media campaign around it. There is a need for quick and impromptu updates from people present at the event. A lot of times there are in-house activities going on which are very interesting and can be published on social channels.

2. it brings about a seamless transfer of all relevant company information/updates to the social channels at the right time
Often my clients send me brand updates in the form of the press releases that have been sent to the newspapers and other traditional media! As a result most of the exciting social media possibilities for the news are gone and a typical update would be informative and usually boring. The inhouse person would know of the news before hand and would be able to sense social potential and think about how to create buzz around it in advance.

3. it ensures that social media activities are well integrated within the company’s different processes
Social media includes customer service, sales, behind-the-scenes and so much from many different aspects of the business. Co-ordinating all this would be best done by someone within the office!

4. this person would encourage the other company employees to actively engage on social media
Employees are an invaluable asset to the company. Often when we launch client social media profiles we get the first few hundred followers from the company employees and their network! In India especially not a lot of people are active on social networks other than Facebook, but having a social media wiz around just sparks the other folks to take interest in these networks. You can arrange social media 101 camps and do other fun stuff which would eventually make your employees so much more social media savvy, which can be an asset for your companies social visibility.

Where do I come in? While the social media person can take care of day-to-day updates and management. Most companies need to have a detailed strategy with long term direction. They also need help with short term buzz generating campaigns. This is where we like to come in. We help companies with their strategy, gauge potential social possibilities for the business and build short term campaigns. The best part is – the social media manager would become the point of contact for us! And the advantages of that are,

Time
This person would have the time to be a part of the social media activities on a daily basis by either an executive role or at least where he/she can overlook the activities. Provide necessary brand support when needed. Often we end up talking to the CEO or some of the top management who just don’t have the time needed!

Control
Social media being long-term and daily, companies always want to control it. With them being strapped for time it often limits social media activities as the necessary approval or information is not given quickly. The whole process can be speeded up greatly with the in-house wiz!

Know-How
This person would be someone who understands social media, so we can talk to him/her in detail of technicalities. Otherwise often the top people don’t get what we would be doing. Often they suggest ideas which are really not socially workable or they fail to grasp possiblities which are very potent!

Collaboration v/s Outsource
It allows collaboration between a social media company and the client, as opposed to a complete outsource situation where there is hardly any integration of the company and its social media activities managed by the agency.

Everything Online becomes our job
Another problem that arises is, every small task online gets pushed to the social media company because there is no one with the client who can manage it. Which basically means that the community manager in our company is actually working like the in-house resource for client company. Which hardly makes any sense!

There are still some more ground realities which really makes me want to work with more in-house social media managers! I hope that a lot more companies open up a social media manager designation!