You’ve been looking forward to it for months and it’s finally arrived! You may be desperate to get away or just need time to chill out away from your hectic lifestyle. Those last minute arrangements need sorting before you pack your things: clean the house, cancel the milk or the papers, set your emails to auto respond but who’s going to run your business while you are away?
These days, potential customers expect businesses to be available 24/7, regardless of your scheduled holidays or weekends away. Visitors to your website or social media page expect to make an enquiry and get an instant response or at least a reply within 24 hours. You may shut your business at 5pm but the peak time for social media usage is evenings when many of your customers are going to be most engaged in your posts.
It is clear that you will need to keep your social media activity going and you will need someone to respond to your customers. With a lack of response, many will simple move on to one of your competitors. Therefore, you have 3 options available to you:
1) Respond to emails and social media yourself. This will mean limiting your time on the beach and finding a café with Wi-fi so that you can log in and interact. Some hotels will have wi-fi that is reachable from the pool and this may suit you to top up your tan, put down your cocktail and use a tablet or laptop to speak to your customers.
2) Delegate duties to an employee or friend. This may involve employing someone for a temporary contract to cover you while you relax in the sun. After all, a holiday is best when you can switch off completing from your day to day tasks. How could you possibly relax when you receive a lengthy email that is labelled as ‘urgent’? However, there will be added stress employing someone new and not knowing their experience or skills. What if they tell the customer the wrong information or completely misunderstand what you are offering? A friend would obviously be trusted but what if it’s their first time using Facebook as a business and blur the boundaries between personal and professional updates?
3) Outsource your social media activity. This may be to an experienced individual who has experience or to a company that understands the importance of social media management. Social Ant offers this service to businesses. Some are happy for me to take full control of their social media platforms and engage with their customers. Others prefer to work in collaboration with Social Ant to ensure there are regular updates and plan a strategy for long term goals. If you are going on holiday, you can then delegate further tasks to me for no extra cost. I can also spend time with you or an employee to help you plan a strategy and use scheduling tools for social media, such as Hootsuite. Therefore, you can relax for your whole trip and only be notified in emergencies.
So remember, pack the suncream and your toothbrush and arrange for your social media activity to be outsourced so you can enjoy that much needed rest!