What is a Social Media Manager?
A social media manager is a person who manages an organization’s social media pages like Google+, Facebook and Twitter. This job may have different responsibilities depending on the organization. This person could manage the strategy and social media marketing tactics for the organization as an individual, or they could also manage a team of social media marketing coordinators, content creators, and writers. In general, a social media manager would handle the daily design, operations, and strategy for an organization’s social media and online presence.
The Rise of Social Media Positions
The growth of social media has occurred very rapidly over the last eight to ten years, and as a result so has the need for qualified people to manage companies’ pages. Social media is essentially an effective method of providing more efficient customer service by answering questions publicly and engaging with your audience to establish trust and resolve concerns quickly. Just like there is a manager in place to lead your customer service team, a manager needs to be put in place to organize your social media presence and lead your social media team.
A career as a social media manager was unheard of ten years ago. However, as mentioned in the last paragraph, the idea of employing a person to interact with consumers, clients, and other stakeholders is not a new career. A social media manager is similar to a public relations specialist, which was (is) a career that interacted with the public long before social media existed. According to data, a rise in social media usage by companies will lead to a rise in jobs with a public relations focus.
The U.S. Department of Labor predicts that public relations jobs will increase by 12% in the next 6 years due to an increase in the need for social media positions. Currently, the task of managing social media, monitoring online communities, and interacting with consumers online can fall under many different job titles. It can even fall under the scope of an existing job title within a company. Nonetheless, when the term “social media manager” is searched on LinkedIn, over 3,000 open jobs will populate. An additional 5,000-plus are posted on Careerbuilder. Social media positions are in high demand right now as nearly every company has some level of social presence.
What does it take to be a Social Media Manager?
Some people in hiring positions feel that anyone fresh out of college with a social media account is a prime candidate to be a social media manager, but I offer a word of caution. While younger generations have grown up using these platforms, it does not necessarily make them ideal candidates. Nor does having many social media accounts and using them frequently qualify a person for this type of position.
A social media manager must be skilled in business dynamics, advertising, marketing, and communication skills. Knowing how to use the platforms is a good start, especially if a company is just starting out on social media, but a Social Media Manager must be skilled in marketing tactics and strategic communication to be successful.
How to become a Social Media Manager
Learning how to use social media effectively can be a great career choice for anyone who wishes to work in the marketing field. There is a lot of flexibility that comes along with working in this field, since it doesn’t necessarily require one to come into an office for 40 hours a week. Socialmediajobs.com is an online resource geared to educating current and future social media marketers. There are many other online resources to learn more about how to create successful social media marketing campaigns.
While using social media platforms on a general level may come easy to many, it’s important to position yourself as a strategist in order to land the best jobs and differentiate yourself from other candidates. Simply being able to set up and post on a Facebook account won’t put you over the top. Take some business courses to fine-tune your strategic side before applying for these roles.
Careers as a Social Media Manager seem to only be increasing in demand, as the industry changes and grows each day. In just ten short years social media has created thousands of jobs and will hopefully continue to create more in the future. Are you a social media manager? What advice do you have for someone seeking a career in this field?
Elizabeth Muckensturm – Digital Marketing Director at Sands Resorts