Social Media – The current state
The days when an individual could use his or her spare time to manage social media for a brand are long gone. Social media is growing like wild fire now, for both big and small firms, and has become an integral part of the marketing and branding industries.
Today, every organization needs social media marketers, managers, consultants, and other specialists to ensure that the company is active on Social Media on a daily basis. It is now necessary for organizations to post updates and answer queries on various social media channels, as they are the epicentre of branding and publicity.
An infographic titled “The Rise of the Social Professionals” showed that the number of social media personnel in companies is increasing with each passing year. The key highlights of the infographic are:
1. The number of job postings on LinkedIn for social media experts, from both small and big firms, increased by 1357% in the 2nd quarter of 2013.
2. The top 5 social media roles on LinkedIn, based on the number of members using ‘social media’ in the title are:
3. Close to 42% of social media vacancies are at the senior level and about 36% are at the entry level. Due to the growing importance of social media for all kinds of brands, the number of social media jobs is expected to rise steadily.
It a universal fact now; every business has to be active on social media. The constantly changing demands of consumers means that brands have to think and act quickly to stay one step ahead of their competitors.
What next? – A career in Social Media
10 years ago, acquiring one Digital Marketing certification was a major achievement. This is not the case anymore. Today, plenty of people have an OMCP certification and a million more are planning to get one.
Having one certification is good, but two certifications will put you at the top of a recruiter’s selection list. This can improve your chances of getting and retaining a Digital Marketing job.
If you are interested in Social Media, you’re in luck. There’s never been a better time to build a career in the field.
The skills necessary to be a Social Media Marketer
The fundamental skills:
1. Marketing knowledge: You will need to have a solid understanding of basic marketing principles. An education in marketing is always a plus, but don’t fret if you don’t have one – you can always find online courses that can help you learn social media marketing.
2. Sociable: Like the name suggests, to be in social media you will need to be sociable. If you are someone who does not like communicating, or who isn’t very outgoing, then this isn’t the career for you.
3. Project Management: No, it isn’t necessary to have a PRINCE2 or PMP certificate, but you will need to manage projects and stick to deadlines. Learning to keep tabs on everything is extremely important.
4. Technology: Yes, you will need a certain degree of computer literacy. Knowledge of social media technology will widen your skillset and ensure that you are up-to-date with the latest trends.
The interpersonal skills:
1. Communication: It goes without saying that if you want to represent an organization and engage with their customers, then you need to have strong communication skills.
2. Personality: Companies want to hire people with engaging personalities to represent their brand. Having an upbeat personality is necessary for the job.
3. Responsiveness: Because everything is online and easily accessible, people want rapid responses. A social media manager will need to be extremely quick at his or her job.
4. Strategic thinking: Being able to think campaigns through before they happen, and thinking outside the box when needed, are great assets to have in a social media manager. Before letting you do something clients will often want to know how you intend to accomplish the task, so being able to present a clear and concise strategy is essential.
What you will be expected to do
1. Strategy: You will need to formulate campaign and platform specific strategies that meet business objectives. You have to set metrics. create action plans, content calendars, and KPIs, and perform different types of research and analysis. There will also be wider strategic duties like contingency planning and crisis management.
2. Content creation: Content is foundations of any marketing campaign. How you decide to execute your campaign will depend on the type of content you produce. As you may have heard before, content is king.
3. Community management: Managing accounts also means managing communities. You should be the point person who represents your brand on social media. You need to constantly reach out to your audience, strengthen social relationships, and develop long lasting followers and customers.
4. Audience building: Marketing to the same people over and over will not widen your scope or social reach. You should be able to increase the size of your online following, while maintaining existing relationships.
5. Customer service: Many companies use social media as an instant channel for customer service. You should be responsive and helpful in this role, as you will be the customer’s first point of contact and will influence their perceptions of the company.
6. Measurement: Every effort that requires investment will need to be measured and analysed to assess its impact on the company’s bottom line.
7. Reporting: Once your efforts have been measured and analysed, your clients will want to understand how their investment has performed. Reporting is a key skill for a social media manager; you need to prove your worth and demonstrate the value you have added to the business.
How much do Social media professionals earn?
Social media managers earn an average salary of $61,000.
Social media specialists earn an average salary of $47,000.
Well, there you have it – everything you need to know to start off your career in Social Media.
So what are you waiting for?
Get certified, gain skills, and get ahead today!