We all have to start somewhere. And there is absolutely nothing wrong with being new to social media management. In fact, if you are new, you're in exactly the right place – we have tons of useful resources for you here!
But the truth is that no one wants to spend money on a new social media manager! Not because they're mean or don't like you, but because they want to invest their marketing budget wisely and be confident that they'll get the best possible results for their money.
So, how do you stop yourself from looking like a newbie when you are new to social media management? Read on to find out!
7 signs you're new to social media management and what to do instead.
1. Charging by the hour.
This one is so important, and we'd really encourage you to think again if you are charging by the hour. Not only does this make you look like a newbie, but it will also cost you money in the long-term.
Charging by the hour is risky. What if you get faster at your role? Will you charge less because you worked less? What if they decide they want to cut back and expect you to offer the same service in less time?
Professional social media managers do not charge by the hour. They also don't have package prices. Instead, they provide every client with a bespoke package based on their needs, assets and objectives.
2. Charging per post.
Professional social media managers know that this is a terrible way to charge a client. Because until you're deep into the strategy and testing content, it is impossible to know how much content will be needed to achieve the business objectives.
Let's say your client decides to pay you for three posts a week. But you are not getting results and want to test two posts a week, your client will be over the moon at paying less, but what if you want to test five posts a week – will they be so happy paying more? Doubtful.
Professional social media managers charge a client a monthly fee, and they spend time testing to get the best results. They know that sometimes one great post can get killer results, but other times, perhaps in a promotional period, they'll need to post multiple times a day.
3. No social media presence.
We feel REALLY strongly about this one, and it's not just our opinion. When a business is looking to hire a freelance social media manager, they'll want to see proof that you can market a business. And if you're not marketing your own, why would they trust you to market theirs?
We're not saying you need to be posting on every channel every day. But you do need to have a presence everywhere that someone might check. And you should be posting regular (good) content on at least one channel – the one your dream clients are most likely to hang out on.
→ Not sure what to say? The Content Bank will help!
4. Persuading people about the merits of social media marketing.
As a new freelance social media manager, working with an established business already marketing itself on social media probably feels scary. We get it.
And you might be tempted to go for the smaller businesses instead. Maybe, one-man bands or solo entrepreneurs you know could benefit from being on social media but currently are either not using it or not using it well.
The trouble is that when you waste time convincing someone of the benefits you can bring to their business, you're putting yourself in an awkward position. If they're not already investing in marketing, they're likely to be very protective of their budget. And that means they'll expect results quickly and are likely to panic and fire you if they don't get them.
Instead of convincing people that their business should be on social media, look for companies that already are. A business that is already investing time or money in marketing will be a better client in the long-term.
5. Offering a pick-and-mix service.
Professional social media managers know you can't offer the best service and get the results a client wants if you don't provide all aspects of social media marketing.
But often, new social media managers will allow a client to pick the parts of the service they want to outsource or will drop certain parts in order to lower their fee to win the work.
When you do this, you are doing yourself and your clients a disservice. The client will expect to get the same results because they won't fully understand the impact of not offering a full service, and when they don't get the results they want, it'll reflect badly on you.
→ Learn more about all aspects of social media management in the ultimate guide to being a social media manager.
6. Working for free.
When you're new to social media management, you might not feel confident to charge a business for your services until you have experience. But there is no better way to get that experience than by marketing your own business.
Your business is the only one you should ever work for without charging!
Doing so means you'll build your online presence, attract your dream clients and build your confidence in marketing a business. Yes, your business is a legitimate business!
7. Not having professional processes and documents in place.
Not taking potential clients through a slick conversion process, inviting them onto a discovery call and sending a professional-looking proposal will immediately make you stand out as a newbie to the business.
Professional freelance social media managers have the following systems in place to make sure their business looks professional, and they can win and onboard clients smoothly:
- Freelance Filter™️
- Discovery call process
- Professional proposal & follow up process
- Prospect tracking system
- Onboarding kit, which includes a legal contract, terms of business and a system to collect all the assets and information you need to start your strategy.
→ Over 1600 professional freelance social media managers use The Social Media Managers Toolkit.
Acting like a professional social media manager despite being new to the sector will move your business forward faster than you might think. Being new and acting like a newbie is not the same thing, and being new does not have to hold you back!