The Internet is full of great reports about optimum times to post content on your social media portals. Sage advice can be found almost anywhere, “don’t post after 8 in the evening” and “make sure that your tweets aren’t going out in the middle of the night.”

Obviously this takes for granted that the person doing the posting or Tweeting has done a market segmentation exercise and that their market is limited to one particular time zone.

Of course there are always workarounds, staggered releases can now be scheduled via Facebook and Twitter themselves rather than resorting to solutions such as those offered by Hootsuite and many other social media monitoring and management tools. Having multiple pages also sorts out the regional specificity problem very nicely.

So that’s the outbound bit of your social media strategy taken care of. However, there’s still the tricky question of where you get the content from. This is where the white rabbit syndrome (‘No Time, No time!”) rears its head. We’re all busy and for many small or medium sized businesses this often means that the responsibility for social media optimization falls to the intern or the person nearest the bottom of the business feeding chain.

This is a situation that is simply not sustainable and will inevitably cripple an organization’s social media efforts. With statistics showing that most companies are ramping up their social media activities, especially if their operations are B2B in nature a solution needs to be found.

Google’s latest algorithm, code named Panda and its Penguin tweak are aimed at ensuring that companies producing quality, creative and original content will be rewarded with higher search engine rankings. The quest for quality content needs to be at the forefront of the organizations’ social media efforts.

For the small or medium sized business owner a dedicated corporate affairs or marketing department is simply too expensive. So that leaves outsourcing as a possible solution to the content dilemma.

The question is who exactly can provide quality content at reasonable rates, and if necessary ensure that the content is shared across the social media landscape in a way that feeds the sales funnel?

There are plenty of ‘SEO Experts’ that have now modeled themselves as content providers. Some are good, some are excellent and some are downright dangerous. In my mind a good rule of thumb is to engage with a content provider to get an idea of the background of the executive team and the consultant who will be handling the content development for your organization.

Chances are you’re going to get better service and more engaging content from old school journalists or PR practitioners. Why is this? Journalists live and die by their knowledge of their audience and trend spotting, if they get it wrong, their income stream dries up.

PR practitioners are usually highly skilled at market and audience segmentation for the same reason. In addition the better practitioners will immerse themselves in the strategy of the organization before recommending any tactical outreaches. Add a dash of creativity and some social media sauce and you’ve got the recipe for success.

Just like the White Rabbit, many business owners, especially in the small or medium sized category risk an invitation to the online equivalent t of the Mad Hatter’s Tea Party if they do not exercise good judgment when it comes to social media positioning. Make sure that you don’t inadvertently RSVP, find a trusted adviser.

The social media has been recognized as a major contributor to growing influence and engaging with current and potential customers. One of the ways business can grow influence and maximize the effectiveness of their social media efforts is to find a trusted content adviser.

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