Is the Youngest Person in Your Office really Qualified to be Your Social Media Manager?

It's quite funny how business expertise is no longer a "selling-point". No one thinks what I do is an expertise or rather they think what I do is great but it's too expensive for them cause what I do, their office manager can do for a lower, cheaper price.

I met with a prospect last week, who went on and on about wanting to "raise the bar" and about how "he was miles ahead of his competition with his ideas and awareness about marketing" and how he really wanted my company to help grow his brand.

Today, when I called him to follow-up on the proposal I sent him, the one-sided conversation went like this:

  • Well, do I need that many hours? (BTW, we proposed a campaign for SEO, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Email Marketing for under $2 K per month)
  • My admin can do the FB posts because she has time during the day to post company stuff
  • I already have a LinkedIn account and I get all these connection requests which I can add myself.
  • We have a really sharp young lady in our office, she's only 23 and she's a recent graduate in finance. I bet I can have her manage our Facebook and Twitter, you know if the admin can't.

Long and short of it was that he had convinced himself that he didn't need me.  I could barely keep my laughter from spilling but I didn't say another word. I  just told thanked him for the opportunity to provide a quote and told him that perhaps we can be "plan B" in case he needs help. And then I hung up and laughed my head off.

Ok, so he really thinks a combination of his admin + 23 year old fresh-out-of-school employee + himself makes for a winning "marketing" team!

So here's my question to you all.

Who are you fooling Mr/Ms business owner if you think that "marketing" is something ANYONE can do?

Nothing against 23 year olds but do you think that "being younger" means being 'social marketing" savvy? And does the admin who has free time on her hand really know what to say on Facebook to "Drive interest/interaction" to your website? And do you really think that "adding connections" on LinkedIn is "social networking"??

For sure hire a 23 year old to be your marketing manager, IF:

  • the 23 year old is trained my someone like me (marketing expert)
  • the 23 year old is a "MARKETING" major and/or "has the marketing DNA",
  • the 23 year old is experienced in marketing, communications and is going to be "TRAINED" to be a marketing manager

Otherwise, think about this further and know that "age" is not the reason to hire or not hire someone. Expertise/ training/expertise/aptitude are MORE important than age.

Bottom-line: Just cause you know a 23 year old who can talk the Facebook/Twitter "lingo", doesn't mean the 23 year old is a "marketing expert"

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