Self-employment is on the rise in Canada, with predictions that 45% of the Canadian workforce could be self-employed by the year 2020. During periods of high joblessness, the self-employed ranks increase even faster. While older entrepreneurs have more years to accumulate startup capital and business experience, there are many self-employment strategies that suit younger entrepreneurs. Social media consulting is one of them. It doesn’t require much money to start, and it utilizes a skill that many millennials already possess. You can launch a career as a social media consultant by educating yourself, marketing yourself, and remaining realistic about what the job requires.
Just because you make frequent Facebook status updates and know how to throw funny filters on your Instagram photos doesn’t mean you’re ready to start a social media consulting business. Managing social media accounts for businesses is quite different than using social networks to enhance your personal life. In addition to posting catchy status updates and pictures, you need to understand concepts such as paid social media ads, campaign tracking, and viral content promotion.
Luckily, there are classes you can take to gain a basic education in social media marketing. Don’t worry, they cost significantly less than a college degree, and you can complete them in a much shorter time.
Follow and Emulate Social Media-Savvy Companies
You can also enhance your education by keeping up with companies that have success on social media to get an idea of what they’re doing right. Consider following businesses like Starbucks Canada and JetBlue. You can watch the number of likes and shares on the companies’ social media sites to determine which posts work and which ones fall flat.
Even if you’re the world’s best social media consultant, you can still starve if no one knows about you. For your business to succeed, you must market it effectively. Perhaps the most important aspect of your marketing is what you do on social media. After all, why would a business hire a social media consultant to help with its marketing if the consultant’s own social media marketing isn’t on point?
Create Your Own Social Media Campaign
As a first step to promoting yourself as a social media consultant, set up a website and social media pages on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn. Your website needs a clean and crisp appearance, and it should explain in clear language the benefits your business offers.
If you have a portfolio of current clients, definitely include it. You want to make sure you post regularly to your social media pages and don’t let them lapse. Customers get a bad feeling when they pull up your Twitter account and see the dreaded egg for your profile picture and no posts for the last 18 months.
While social media consulting is a low-barrier-to-entry business and, theoretically, you could set up and start running a business by the end of the day, don’t think it’s easy money. You face many challenges along the way. The low-cost business model invites a lot of competition. Most big cities are teeming with social media marketers.
For your business to take off, it’s a good idea to find a way to differentiate yourself from the herd. Also, remember that social media dynamics constantly change. Many strategies that worked on Facebook as recently as six months ago are obsolete now. While running your customers’ campaigns and marketing to new clients, you should consider setting aside time each week to keep up with the latest social media trends.
Becoming a social media consultant offers a low-cost way to work for yourself. Before getting started, make sure you educate yourself, have a winning marketing plan, and understand the challenges you face in the business. QuickBooks Self-Employed app helps you as a freelancer, contractor, or sole proprietor track and manage your business on the go. Download the app.