You always remember you first right?
So you're a New Social Media Manager just breaking into the industry and you've got your first paying client! So now what do you do? I've learned from quite a few mistakes over the last couple of years as a freelance Social Media Manager & Consultant so I would like to share my list of Do's and Don't's for those of you who are just getting going in your Social Media Management Businesses.
1. Under Promise & Over Deliver -
It's a fundamental for any industry but I found that particularly when dealing with new Social Media Management accounts its important to outline what you will and wont be doing and when you will have it done by.
I found that the clients who hadn't outsourced their Social Media before or even begun to venture into Social Media for their businesses needed educating on the time it takes to perform thorough Social Media Management.
Explain clearly exactly what you actions you will be performing i.e. Buzz Monitoring and Reputation Management, Active Lead Generation, Customer Engagement etc Be strict with yourself and don't let the lines get blurred.
2. Stick to the Package -
Some clients do require bespoke Social Media Management or Consulting solutions but most will generally pick a package when presented with some options. It's a good idea to keep your clients to your Basic, Standard & Premium packages.
I found that after signing up clients to a certain package I would get emails and calls saying "We have this special event on and we need X amount of tickets, please promote it on our Social Media pages" or "We've changed our website can you alter the Social Media" Foolishly I would do it to keep the client happy but then guess what? Next month there is something else to promote or change.
If they want more they have to pay extra or go up to the next package its as simple as that! I introduced "Bolt Ons" to packages after a while. You may consider the same.
3. Go After more clients in the same industry
My first client was my old employer (even if it was for free I still count it as my first client) Lexus. As soon as I found what I was doing was working I began to contact other local car dealerships and tell them of the service I had provided for Lexus. I won another Social Media Management account for one local dealer, landed a consulting gig for another and also managed to bring on an account for a Car Sales Training Company.
So what did I do then? Went after more training companies. Businesses don't like to think that their competition are doing something they aren't so play on that fact. Before long you'll be able to real off a list of the clients you have on your books whenever your speaking to potential prospects.
4. Get Referred
Its perfectly acceptable to ask for referral businesses from a happy client. Dont miss this opportunity because you dont want to upset your client or affect your relationship with them. Just asking "Do you know of anyone else who could benefit from this service" If your delivering a good service then your clients should be more that happy to refer business to you.
A referral in Social Media is such a great advantage to the service provider i.e. the Social Media Manager. To have that client recommend you on LinkedIn or allow you to write a some positive comments about the work you do for thier business can be one of the single biggest business generators available to the Social Media Manager. Tweet and share these comments on your Social Media profiles, in relevent Linkedin Groups and use the positive feedback as testimonials on your blog.
5. Keep learning -
As we all know Social Media is changing rapidly and constantly. Its so important that we dont stop learning. There is always something new to discover so just stay on top of changes and lear as much as you can about the current state of Social Media. Know Your Product!