3 Essential Questions to Ask Social Media Candidates for Hire
I admit these questions are strange. But if you need leads these are THE questions to ask social media candidates. Because social media is a sales tool that will filter leads, you need to hire people or agencies who define success as sales, not just engagement.
So, without further ado, here are three "must ask" questions to aim at would-be social marking managers or agency reps—straight from a guy who generated a 400 percent increase in leads in 90 days for call tracking provider, LogMyCalls.
- What questions do you have of ME?
- Give me 10 blog post titles you would write about us, right now, please.
- How will you track your success as a social/content marketer?
McKay Allen of LogMyCalls.com is a one-man social media lead generation powerhouse. So I asked him: How can folks hire someone as good as he is? How can an employer lower the risk of hiring an unproductive resource?
Here are more details on the questions he shared with me, raw and unfiltered.
No. 1: What Questions Do You Have of ME?
This one can really throw social media candidates. They'll either swing and miss, or hit a home run. Point being, good candidates will ask you questions that reveal how they think. Bad ones won't.
Asking questions of you also shows how they would act if you employed them.
"I want them to ask me questions about our lead generation strategy, and how our blog fits into our lead generation strategy," says Allen.
"When we hire new content marketing people here at LogMyCalls, I want to hear these types of questions ... they should ask, 'How many leads does LogMyCalls generate each week from the blog? How many leads do you want to generate each week from the blog?'"
Allen says these kinds of questions demonstrate how a candidate, "truly views a blog as more than a place to write stuff. It is a tool to generate leads."
He's brutally honest about the importance of questions coming at you from candidates.
"As an employer, I wouldn't consider hiring someone that didn't have any questions for me," Allen says.
No. 2: Give Me 10 Blog Post Titles, Please
"This will put them on the spot, but it is a critical question to ask," says Allen.
Indeed. If your candidates have experience in writing blog post titles that sell they'll be able to provide you with:
- Concepts for articles that are "how to" and problem solving oriented (focused on your customers' pain and/or goals)
- Titles that exploit proven copywriting rules by getting prospects to take action
Allen says the social media candidate, "should be able to, very quickly, come up with 10 blog post titles they could write about NOW. Obviously this presupposes that they're educated on what the company does."
No. 3: How Will You Track Your Success as a Content Marketer?
Again, Allen is point blank: "The answer should not be based on traffic or YouTube views. Their answer must revolve around leads and phone calls. If they are generating more form fill-outs, phone calls, and revenue for your company, they will be successful. If they're only interested in Facebook 'Likes' for example, it just won't work."
Be warned: Many candidates are reluctant to use such measurable, bottomline-oriented performance metrics. They'll often overuse the word "engagement" when responding.
Be strong. Hang in there. You'll probably need to burn through a bunch of candidates before you find a gem or two.
Have Candidates Show You the Goods
A good social media manager or content marketing pro will produce leads and sales. Period. So how can you to hire someone that will, with some certainty, work out?
Allen says hire someone who will clearly demonstrate an ability to write articles, videos and other content that produced leads.
- Get writing samples and look for calls-to-action within them.
- Verify they produced leads as best you can with prior employers or clients.
"You also want to make sure that this person is okay writing and engaging with people online all day every day," says Allen who recommends exploring former journalists or copywriters.
McKay Allen is a social media lead generation rockstar worth following. He says biggest way to lessen a hiring risk is to have applicants produce content for you in a short period of time during the interview.
"For example, give them 20 minutes to write a blog post on a certain subject and see how they do ... see if they can write quickly, accurately, and cleanly in a very short period of time. This will stress them out, but it will tell you what you need to know."
Do you have questions to ask social media candidates that work for you? Let me know in comments!