If you’re a small business owner with limited free time, the last thing you want to worry about at the end of a busy week is managing your social media channels.

But we know that social networks like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram are amongst the most effective ways of spreading the word about your business, helping you build stronger relationships with clients and ensuring you’re considered when potential customers are looking for services you offer.

The best way to overcome this is to begin outsourcing the responsibility to a social media management company such as 99social – below, we’ve put together some advice to ensure your accounts are in their best possible position before you hand them over to an agency.


Update your passwords

Let’s start with one of the most obvious tips – changing your passwords before you hand them over to an agency ensures that only you and they will have access to your accounts.

If you’ve had other agencies, staff, or friends working on your accounts in the past, it can make things a lot easier to wipe the slate clean and remove their administrative access on networks like Facebook and LinkedIn, and by changing passwords on Twitter and Instagram.

When did you last update your passwords?

That way, your new agency will be accountable to you, and there’s no chance of someone else logging into your account and making changes. Use a password management tool like LastPass and a website like Secure Password Generator to create hard-to-crack passwords.


Give your accounts a cleanup

Another great strategy to consider before you hand over your social media accounts to an agency is to give them a clean-up. When did you last go through your direct messages on Twitter and Instagram, deleting spam and responding to customer enquiries?

Perhaps you’ve followed hundreds of accounts on Twitter that aren’t relevant to your business? If so, you could unfollow them in bulk before you get started with an agency.

There are a number of tools that you can use to unfollow accounts.

On Facebook, you should review your ‘About’ tab and make sure all of your information is up-to-date, from your contact information to your biography, opening hours, and links to your products and forms.

After all, if you’re paying a company to manage your social media, surely it makes sense to have everything looking its best – and every link working properly – to maximise your returns?


Take screenshots of your metrics

Something else you might want to consider before handing over your accounts to an agency is taking screenshots of your current metrics.

From follower numbers on Twitter and Instagram to engagement metrics on LinkedIn and Facebook – the more you know about your current standing, the easier it’ll be to monitor progress and ensure you’re getting good value for money from the agency you’re working with.

Do you know your stats?

If, for instance, you started off at 500 Twitter followers and climbed to 1,000 in six months, you’d be able to measure your growth and spot areas for improvement. Use tools such as Facebook Insights and Twitter Analytics.


Think about your strategy

So, you’re almost ready to hand over the keys to your accounts and sit back and relax. But before you do, have a think about why you’re outsourcing your social media management. Is it purely to save time, or do you want them to develop a strategy that’s designed to increase brand awareness, drive sales, or spark debate?

Do you have a social strategy?

Think about a social media strategy and set aside some time to discuss this with your new social media manager. Planning in advance and having a good idea of your goals and aspirations will help your business thrive.


Consider a transition period

Finally, discuss timings with your new social media manager and ensure your accounts aren’t going to be left without content for an extended period. For example, if the agency is taking over at the start of the month, you might want to schedule some content from 25th-30th so that your accounts stay updated.

Not this kind of transition period!

When they do take over, you might also want to keep an eye on their initial content to ensure it matches your brand style and voice and set aside time to review any changes so that you’re happy and confident in their abilities.


Whatever your current position, we wish you the best of luck outsourcing your social media. Check back to the blog soon for more advice for small business owners, right here on 99social.

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