Social media consultants are high in demand and with the right approach, you can find a plethora of clients to offer social media services.
It’s a job you can do from home as a freelancer or by starting a social media consulting business and earning a very good salary.
In this comprehensive guide, you’ll learn what a social media consultant does, how much money you can make, and the exact steps to follow to become a successful social media professional.
Keep reading this article with PK Halder to understand social media consultants.
What is a Social Media Consultant?
A social media consultant is a qualified individual offering social media marketing services to clients. Services include planning and executing a social media strategy to promote a company’s brand, product, and services on social media networks.
What differentiates consultants from other social media marketers is that to become a consultant you need to have excellent knowledge of the social media industry as a whole and not just a particular network.
The role of a social media consultant is to look at the overall picture and design a complete strategy on how a brand can take advantage of social media networks. Then it’s the job of social media marketing specialists and social media managers to execute the strategy set by the consultant.
What Does a Social Media Consultant Do?
A social media consultant is responsible for optimizing the social media presence of a company by utilizing all relevant social media channels. This includes using techniques and strategies to increase sales, raise brand awareness and create a social community around a brand.
Some of the services that social media consultants provide are:
- Social media marketing strategic planning
- Managing the social media presence of a company
- Updating social media accounts with new content
- Monitoring social media accounts and engaging with users
- Training other professionals on how social media networks work
- Optimizing paid social media campaigns
- Reporting and communicating with clients
- Social Media Consultant Skills
Besides social media marketing skills, a good consultant should also have the following skills:
Project management: To successfully manage social media campaigns, you have to treat them as projects. A good consultant should know how to set goals, monitor KPIs and progress, manage people, and other skills related to organization and project management.
Basic SEO principles don’t apply only to search engines, but they can be used to optimize the organic reach of social marketing campaigns. A consultant should be aware of how SEO works and how to use the different SEO concepts in social media campaigns.
A big part of social media marketing is about content. A consultant should have content marketing skills to be able to plan and design effective campaigns. These include knowing how to do topic research, customer profiling, and other content marketing techniques.
To get the attention of users with ads or other forms of content (posts, videos), you need to have a creative mindset. Following or replicating competitors is not enough. A consultant needs to come up with new ideas and methods to reach and engage with an audience.
CRO (conversion rate optimization)
Getting the attention of users is the first step but not enough to fulfill your social media goals. You want users to perform specific actions and eventually convert and this is what conversion rate marketing is all about.
How Much do Social Media Consultants Make?
According to various statistics, social media consultancy hourly rates vary between $100-$120 per hour. This is the rate of established consultants.
For beginners, the rate is between $20-$50 per hour and for intermediate levels $50-$100 per hour.
How much you’ll charge for your services depends on your experience, country of operation, and the amount a client is willing to pay for social media services.
My recommendation is to do your research and find out how much other consultants charge and offer a lower rate.
This will help you get some clients to keep your business going and as you gain more experience and build your portfolio, you can gradually increase your rates.
What is the difference between a Social Media Consultant and a Social Media Manager?
The main difference is that a social media manager is in charge of an in-house social media marketing team while a consultant is a solo freelancer hired by the company for a short-term period or specific project.
It is common for companies with in-house teams to seek the help of a consultant to help them with strategic planning. The consultant will prepare the strategy and the social media manager will ensure that is executed correctly.
Social Media Consultant VS Digital Marketing Consultant
The difference between a social media consultant and a digital marketing consultant is that the latter has a wide range of skills that cover other digital marketing channels like SEO, content marketing, PPC marketing, eCommerce marketing, and not just social media marketing.
The average rate of an experienced digital marketing consultant is between $140-$160 per hour while social media consultants charge $100-$120 per hour.
Social Media Consultant Work Environment
Social media consultants are usually self-employed and work from home. They may also travel to meet with clients or attend conferences. Because they often set their own hours, they may work long hours to meet deadlines or take on additional projects. They may also work evenings and weekends to stay up-to-date on the latest social media trends. Social media consultants need to have excellent written and verbal communication skills, as well as strong organizational and time-management skills. They also need to be proficient in the use of social media platforms and tools.
Social Media Consultant Trends
Here are three trends influencing how social media consultants work. Social media consultants will need to stay up-to-date on these developments to keep their skills relevant and maintain a competitive advantage in the workplace.
The Need for More Technical Skills
As social media becomes more and more popular, the need for social media consultants with technical skills will continue to grow.
Social media consultants are in high demand because they can help businesses understand how to use social media to reach new customers and connect with current ones. In order to be successful in this field, consultants will need to have a strong understanding of both social media platforms and technology. This includes things like coding, web development, and marketing.
More Focus on Influencer Marketing
The trend of influencer marketing is growing rapidly as businesses realize the power of word-of-mouth advertising. By partnering with influential bloggers, vloggers, and social media stars, businesses can reach a large audience quickly and effectively.
Social media consultants can capitalize on this trend by becoming experts in influencer marketing. They can do this by developing relationships with influencers and understanding how to create campaigns that resonate with their audiences.
A Greater Emphasis on Employee Engagement
Employee engagement has become an increasingly important topic for businesses in recent years. As social media has become more prevalent, it has become easier for employees to disengage from work and spend their time on other activities.
This trend is leading businesses to focus on employee engagement strategies, such as providing opportunities for employees to connect with each other outside of work or offering rewards for completing certain tasks. Social media consultants can help businesses implement these strategies by creating social media campaigns that encourage engagement.
Pursuing a freelance marketing career as a social media consultant is an excellent choice if you love working with social media networks and have the necessary marketing skills to support the job role and responsibilities.