What can I do with my communications degree?
Some of you may be wondering, ‘what can I do with my communications degree?’. I was wondering that same thing. In fact, I set out to answer this age old question and to clarify what jobs are out there for communications majors. To gain some insight, I contacted Kelly Stock, my best friend. Kelly recently graduated from Pennsylvania State University, therefore like most recent graduates, had no idea how she wanted to utilize her degree. Luckily enough for her, through Penn State, Kelly landed her current job. What does Kelly do you might be wondering. Is this at the job for me? You’re about to find out.
Q: What is your current job title?
Kelly: Social Media Strategist
Q: Where do you currently work?
Kelly: Sling TV which is based in Colorado
Q: What exactly is a social media strategist/marketer?
Kelly: A social media strategist is responsible for the growth, engagement, and retention of a company’s online community through social media.
Is this starting to gain anyone’s interest? Of course, social media is huge in today’s society and is ever-growing. Twitter, Facebook, Snapchat, that’s how most companies are marketing their products. It would be up to you to engage those customers and keep them coming back for more. So, if you’re addicted to social media like the rest of the world, this might be the job for you. Keep reading to find out more!
Q: Give us a brief rundown of what you do day to day?
Kelly: I write, schedule, and publish marketing posts or Sling TV’s Twitter, Facebook, Snapchat, and Instagram. I choose the content to promote based on what TV shows and movies are popular at the time, what big television events are coming up, new product launches, and current device and programming partner campaigns.
Q: What is one skill you need to do this job?
Kelly: The most important skill as a social media marketer is understating the target demographic. If you do not understand who you are marketing to then you won’t know what type of content to promote and what brand voice to use.
Q: What class in college prepared you or helped you for being a social media marketer, if any?
Kelly: Any class teaching you about PhotoShop or video editing is very important. Many social media marketing jobs require graphic design or editing work for promotional assets. If you can help create these yourself, you’ll have a leg up amongst other job candidates.
How many of you thought that for a job in the communications field you would need to be efficient in PhotoShop and video editing? I certainly know I didn’t until I read this article. The communications field is multifaceted and encompasses a variety of different skills. So, those classes you might think are useless in college now, might end up being the classes that are your saving grace in the real world.
Q: What projects have you worked on/what types of projects do you work on?
Kelly: An example project I recently worked on was for a co-promotion with CMT for the season premier of Nashville. In total, I put together a sweepstakes giving away a fully paid trip to Nashville including hotel/airfare, a tour of The Bluebird, a tour of the Country Music Hall of Fame, and tour of the set of Nashville. In fact, sweepstakes are a great way to promote a show while engaging followers!
Q: What do you love most about your job?
Kelly: I love how different every day is and how closely I can work with all of Sling TV’s programmers and device partners on campaigns to promote their new shows and product release. As a result, I have a lot of creative freedom in how I promote things, which is challenging, but rewarding.
Q: If you could get a social media marketing job at any company, which company would you choose and why?
Kelly: I would work as a social media marketing for Netflix. Netflix has nailed the art of relevant, creative marketing campaigns (especially on their Instagram) which is noteworthy. I think it’s important to post content your followers will actually care about, and Netflix is really good at making intriguing posts.
Who doesn’t love Netflix? Can you imagine being the new face of Netflix and coming up with slogans like the famous, ‘Netflix and Chill’? Opposite, I would work for Lululemon. Lululemon has a Snapchat account that allows various different brand ambassadors of their company to travel around the world and promote their brand in their own unique way. I think that is what is unique about their company and how they use social media to market their company. What company’s social media would you want to run? (I have a feeling most people are going to say Wendy’s because that guy is ruthless).
Q: If you could steal anyone’s job in the world (family/friend/celebrity) whose would it be?
Kelly: I would steal Giuliana Rancic’s job as a red carpet correspondent for E! because who wouldn’t want to?
Q: What social media networking site is your favorite?
Kelly: In the entertainment industry, I think Snapchat is the most important social media marketing channel right now. Most of all, followers want to see exclusive content they can’t access themselves. Therefore, Snapchat is the best way to create behind-the-scenes campaigns using quick attention-grabbing videos/photos.
Q: What advice would you give for anyone trying to enter the social media marketing field?
Kelly: Make sure your personal social media brand accurately portrays who you want to be seen as in the professional world. Most of all, you should think of your social accounts as a public resume.
That last piece of advice truly resonated with me. Realistically, we don’t realize that what we post on our social media accounts is there for everyone to see, even future employers. I know for a fact I need to start investing more into my social media accounts and making them more presentable and professional for future employers who are lurking!
Some of you may still be conflicted on what you want to do with your communications degree, and that’s okay. It might come to you over night or it might come to you when you’re 45. Ultimately, the communications field is so multifaceted it allows you to have so much freedom in choosing. You could be a social media marketer like Kelly and promote a brand thru social media networks (which is my dream job), you can teach communications, or you can go into PR. Like the common stereotype for communications goes, communications is broad therefore you have so many choices. Go out and make them!