This guest post is from Erin Feldman. Erin is the CEO and founder of Write Right. She provides writing coaching and consulting services. Her goal is to help individuals, businesses, and organizations to use the written word more effectively and creatively. Erin’s background is in writing and marketing. She holds a Master of Fine Arts degree in creative writing and a Bachelor of Arts degree in English and graphic design. Write right; don’t make her use her red pen.
I don’t recommend outsourcing one’s social media.
Such a statement makes sense since I work as a writing coach and consultant. My business is helping people to author and manage their own messages. If those people outsource their writing efforts, which include social media ones, I lose business. Fair enough, but before I’m accused of being a self-centered, egotistical maniac, let me explain. I used to be a person to whom social media was outsourced. I know firsthand about the pitfalls of it.
I think that the cons of outsourcing far outweigh any pros. Even if everyone is on board with the social media strategy, outsourcing leaves something to be desired. If a business doesn’t own its own social media, it can’t control what happens – even with policies and procedures in place. That business is placing all its trust in a single person or entity. What happens if that person decides not to manage the business’ social media? It’s not as though the person has a vested interest in the business except in terms of monetary compensation. Will the business take responsibility for those social properties if its outsourced social media manager disappears? Will it be prepared to do so?
I also think outsourcing leads to problems in translation. I can follow the instructions I’ve been given to the letter, but even that is a translation. Is it correct? Is it what the client wants? It might be in some cases, but a translation never is as good as the original. It simply isn’t. I learned that lesson while taking a literary theory class about the problems encountered with translations. As good as a translation may be, it varies from translator to translator, and it never says exactly what the original text does. Do I appreciate those translations? Of course I do, but I still wish I knew French, Spanish, German, Greek, and other languages so that I could read the original texts.
I know that some people might argue that an outsourced social media presence is better than no presence at all. They might even suggest that a translation is worthwhile. I don’t know that I can refute those points. I simply think that a better way exists, and it exists in each business taking ownership of its online presence. That might mean a business works with an agency, which can be different from outsourcing; then again, it could mean that that business works with a consultant and becomes an active participant in its own marketing.
How are you handling your social media presence? Do you outsource or handle everything in house? Or is it a combination of the two?
- Should Business Owners Outsource Social Media? [Marketing Cast] (hubspot.com)
- Weekend Video: Customer (Dis)Service (inklingmedia.net)
- Social Media Measurement: How Do You Get The C-Suite Buy In? (v3im.com)
- How can we control social media? (rachelbarkley.wordpress.com)