Please heed this very important warning – don’t feed your interns to the trolls. The social media trolls, that is.
When a new intern shows up to your office for their first few days on the job, many people tend to give them the work that no one else wants to do. Fetch the coffee, make the copies, answer the phones, and of course…post on social media.
While that may seem like a great task for a college student who spends a large part of their day on apps anyway, it’s not the best idea. In fact, it could turn out very badly.
Here are our top five reasons why you shouldn’t let your intern run your social media.
They are practically strangers
We’re not saying that your intern is stupid, far from it. But they haven’t been around your company long enough to know the things that will create meaningful content to drive sales and leads to your business. They don’t know the top-selling products, the discount trends, the jokes you share with your customers, or which staff members to feature.
They also know nothing about the brand you’ve been building and the tone in which you communicate with the community. A lot of hard work can be lost due to handing the digital reins over to a newbie.
Social media is an important driving tool for your brand. You need to have someone who can study your analytics and make long-term decisions about your account.
It’s All Just Temporary
Sure, having the intern post to your Facebook page every day may seem like a tempting break, but what happens when they go back to their regularly scheduled class load and it’s handed off to someone else? A unified, cohesive tone of voice for your brand is difficult to maintain if the person behind it is changing every three to six months.
Not to mention, there may be posts that need boosting or great advertising opportunities, but it is unlikely that you will feel comfortable giving buying power to someone who is only there for six months.
Not All Apps Are Equal
It may seem strange to consider, but not all college-aged students are familiar with every single social media app. We hate to be the bearer of bad news, but most young adults consider Facebook something for the older crowd. There are so many social media apps, and they all serve different target audiences. Depending on who you’re aiming to reach, your intern may not be able to connect with them over that medium without some guidance.
At the same time, having someone who is familiar with newer platforms may bring your office up to date with the latest apps that are on the scene. This collaboration can be great. But what happens when their internship comes to an end and there is no one left behind who is passionate enough to continue posting that content? You become a ghost on that platform.
Sure, your intern has been on social media for many years. That doesn’t mean; however, they are ready for all the responsibilities that come with a band’s account. Beyond typos (let’s not throw the intern under the bus on that one, everyone makes typos from time to time), there are several important things to think about when posting from an account that isn’t their own.
Do they have permission to use the images they picked? Do they engage with the trolls? What happens if a customer posts a complaint? There are so many things to consider when it comes to posting to social media. Interns are here to learn, and they do that by being taught. Not by being thrown into the fire on their first day.
While a college intern may know their way around a keyboard better than you, they have far less experience dealing with crisis management. If there is a major issue happening for your business, anything they do or say on social media can go viral or be misinterpreted.
It’s a lot of pressure to put on someone who is just in your office for college credit. You want someone at the helm that can effectively communicate with your audience the important information and facts about the situation. Or to not post at all if the situation warrants. Staying calm and not responding negatively to comments on social media is an important lesson to learn.
Social media is important to your brand. While it may be tedious to post on your page every day and monitor all your platforms, it’s not something that can be passed off to the youngest and newest team member who is only there for a few months.
Interns are in your office to learn. So, why not use this great opportunity for them to learn from someone with more experience. Then when they graduate and are hired for their first job, they will have the tools they need to be successful.
Meanwhile, your brand will be safe and secure in the hands of someone dedicated to getting the most out of your social media platforms.