Social Media Managers; What do they do?
As you stroll through social media you often see brands replying to user’s comments. Sometimes the replies are brutal and go viral, sometimes they are just answering a simple question. I know the thought of “Wow, Wendys really is strong with the comebacks, remind me not to mess with her” has passed through my head a time or two. Not to spoil anything for you but, the brands are not the ones making these comments, I know, I was shocked (and a little disappointed) too. So who is behind these playful comments? Whether they are coming from Wendy’s, Netflix, or Merriam-Webster, there is a brand’s Social Media Manager making these witty comments to engage with consumers.
So, What else do Social Media Managers do?
Brands and celebrities often hire multiple people to keep up with their social profiles. These people are called Social Media Managers and they do a lot more than write witty comments. A social media manager’s job is to handle a company’s social media profile. More specifically, interact with consumers, create original photo/video content, collect consumer analytics, assist in marketing endeavors, and work closely with the other departments.
Interacting with consumers is a big part of the job. You will be creating social posts across different social media platforms to help spread awareness about your company. You will need to have a creative outlook to keep things interesting. Collecting data is also a big part of the job so you can share with your team what is working, and what isn’t. Some of the data being collected are likes, followers, and how many times a post is seen. Being able to work well with others is a key aspect of this job. You will have to communicate with the other departments; such as marketing, sales, and customer service to make sure everything is going smoothly.
Skills I highly highly recommend having
While being a Social Media Manager could look simple, you need multiple skills to actually pull off being one. Here are some of the most important ones.
Strong communication skills- If you’re not a “people person” this is not the job for you. You have to be able to clearly communicate with different types of people. You’re going to be talking to coworkers, audiences, and other companies.
Up-To-Date- How silly would it be to have the title “Social Media Manager” but not even know what TikTok is?! (If you don’t, this probably is not the article for you.) You will need to keep up with the newest trends, lingo, and apps to keep up with the company’s social profile.
Writing and Organization- Your writing skills will need to be sharp so you don’t end up with a bunch of kids correcting your grammar (it doesn’t feel too good). On a serious note, you will be strategizing and managing different projects so your writing needs to be clear. You also should have a fair amount of wit to keep things interesting. Everyone has their own unique organizational system, some work in organized messes. No matter what works best, it is important to have one to stay agile and clean. Messy desk, messy life… or something like that.
Marketing- A degree in marketing would be helpful, but not necessary. As long as you know your way around photoshop, web design, and google analytics you should be set.
Okay, So how do I learn these skills?
Before getting a job as a Social Media Manager, it is recommended you have some sort of education, whether it is an entire degree or just a few classes.
Some classes that would be beneficial and help you excel in the field are as follows.
Any type of writing class will help.
Photography/Media Technology. Anything that will open up the world of editing.
Any type of marketing class.
Where to start my career.
Networking is also important, and there is no better way to do that than to get involved. There are plenty of clubs around to join such as Creative Writing, Newspaper, Radio, and Photography clubs. Another way to get started is by getting an internship. These are great learning opportunities. Working with companies will be a good way to get yourself out there. Reach out on social media to small businesses and more. Once you get a taste of what a social media manager does and have the experience, it will be easier to get a job.
Money, the thing that really motivates someone to settle on a decision. Depending on where you work, and who you work for the amount you are paid differently. On average you can expect a yearly salary of $111,490. It gets even better with a high of $142,114. The low for this job is $84,682 a year.
One of the current best Social Media Managers: Ginny Sidell.
Ginny Sidell is a top Social Media Manager today. She works for KFC and has “transformed herself into the persona of the Colonel”. Her job includes creative content development, strategy, engagement, insights, and optimization for the brand. She also replies and jokes around with other brands to help boost KFC’s engagement. Since her start, KFC’s social engagement has grown 300% on Twitter, and Facebook likes have gone up by $1.5 million!
Let’s go over a few things
- Now that you have a taste for what being a Social Media Manager is like, it doesn’t seem as easy. It is a lot of fun but at the same time, there is a lot of work that goes into it. This is not one of the jobs you can just show up and forget about at the end of the day, you need to put your all into it. The workweek is a typical 40hour week, but as deadlines approach and as new strategies are being formed, expect to stay for some extra hours. With your morning coffee, you’ll always have a side of scanning News, Instagram, and Twitter to keep up with what is going on in the world.