Career Guide: Social Media Strategist

Social Media Strategist

Social Media Strategist Overview:

Calling all communication studies majors and minors. Have you found a career path worth pursuing? Well, if you like writing, content creation, and a fast past environment focused on social media and digital marketing, this is the job for you. Social Media is a highly competitive, fast growing industry and according to was unheard of 10 years ago. Therefore making the industry highly competitive in both applying for internships and jobs. Salary wise, the national average for a social media strategist is $50,783 and in the Philadelphia, PA, the average salary is $44,885.

Today technology and times are constantly changing making social media more prevalent in society. According to to Pew Internet, over 60% of the United States population uses at least one social media platform. Since social media use is so popular, companies are moving their marketing to where the people are; online with social media.  

Social Media Strategist Job Responsibilities:

Most of us are on social media, which is an excellent platform to engage with people who we don’t talk to on a daily basis. Social media keeps us up to date with the latest news and events, both locally and in the world. The responsibilities of a social media strategist are exactly that. According to the Social U, this job requires that you establish and control a strategy, or course of action, using social media, to increase traffic flow and reach of your brand.

Engagement is a key aspect in developing content. Companies engage on social media through likes, comments, and shares. Think of brand. Have you ever left a comment on a brand’s social media page and heard back from the brand? Well, that is busting a company’s engagement. Also, social media is constantly showing us content from our favorite brands. Thus, an example of successful social media marketing.

Job Skills and Tips:

When searching for a job as a Social Media Strategist, employers usually look for candidates with previous experience and portfolio of skills. According to the Social U, skills necessary for any job in social media are strong communication, verbal, and presentation skills. Experience with the popular social media is also required including: FaceBook, YouTube, Twitter, and blogs. Knowledge about search engine optimization is needed when creating content. In addition to these skills, an understanding of how to use the  Microsoft Office Suite is required.

These skills are useful when applying to internships. Numerous interviews for internships will ask about these requirements. You can learn these proficiencies while in college, which enables early access to internships. Early access is good because you can earn credits for internships. Internships show companies that you have experience in the field, which will qualify you for the job. Anything professional you can do in college for your career, will help prepare you. This will also better your options for a job after graduation.

Daily Life a Social Media Strategist:

Samantha Jacobs, 22 years old, graduated from Cabrini University in May of 2016 as a Digital Communication Studies Major. Almost a year after graduation, Samantha received her first full time job as a Social Media Strategist.  She is working for the Coatesville Country Club, where she helps run their social media platforms. Daily, she spends her time watching analytics to track posts to see which ones are benefiting the country club and which ones are not. Knowing this information helps her adjust content to fit the country club’s needs. Working closely with the club, Samantha spends her time writing blog posts and keeping up with current trends that are beneficial to the club.

As for advice to current students, Samantha emphasized the importance of experience. She said that companies want a couple years of experience of a portfolio of working before they will consider hiring you. Having an internship in college will help expand your networks and help open doors to the start of your career.  Her second piece of advice was to know what kind of social media you would want to get into; inhouse strategist or Business to Business (B2B). An inhouse strategist’s focus is on the company’s product while business to business might run strategies for more than one company at a given time.

As the interview came to an end, Samantha left with this. “The average business definitely needs social media in today’s world, but it’s not going to use it in the same way that Nike or McDonald’s might. People aren’t going to just follow the company because it’s been popular forever and everyone knows it. For the average company, it’s much more about trying to let people who wouldn’t otherwise know you, learn you” (S, Jacobs, personal communication, April 12, 2017).

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