When there are 689 million search results for ?social media expert? on Google what makes a real social media expert? And how do you spot one?

Possibly one of the most over-used terms in marketing in recent times. Social is a lot more than knowing how to post content. So what are the top five qualities to look for in a social media expert?

1. Social media experts love the data

Social analytics should be an essential part of the conversation from the start. They should be keeping an eye on how your posts are doing compared to each other and previous months. Watching for trends and acting to quickly switch strategy if anything starts to decline. When who sees your posts is so linked to an algorithm you need a partner who can stay ahead of the game for you. As the game changes. All. the. Time.

2. They talk strategy not just stories (as much as we love them)

What role is each type of post playing? What is the right approach for your brand? Have you got your social tone of voice nailed? From how you structure your hashtags to the balance of brand to user-generated-content, if you don?t have a plan, you?re results will be limited. Taking a bit of time at the start to review and plan campaigns will mean your feeds are on-brand and effective.

3. They want to join it all up

Your social should never be an island. Think about your social amplification plan. From aligning with key marketing activity to targeting new customers with social advertising to embedding e-commerce. You want to choose an agency who understands the power of this. One who can help work towards a common goal across disciplines. One that utilises all the added functionality these social media powerhouses now provide for businesses.

4. They are seriously organised

If they?re not singing the praises of a sophisticated social tool such as Sprout Social, Iconosquare or Hootsuite proceed with caution. The benefits,?from social listening to competitor monitoring, are vast. If your social media expert isn?t investing in these tools, your account will be missing a trick.

5. They are creative and passionate

Instagram accounts can be grown superficially in days by re-posting others content and hashtagging to oblivion. But nothing will beat the quality of a well created (not just curated) feed. What you do offline IS important, and we believe that creating branded content is an essential part of building your social reputation. Being present, passionate and pro-active will all help you grow a genuine community, not one that’s skin-deep.

Perhaps being a ?social media expert? needs a rebrand, the industry has grown so quickly that the term doesn?t fit all the functions, you need to be a community manager, brand reputation officer and content creator all in one (and love it all), and luckily we do.

Get in touch, tell us a bit about yourself and we’ll send you a tailor-made 5-page ‘social food for thought’ PDF.