A Career In Social Media
While I was obtaining my undergraduate degree, I worked as an intern in the Finance department of a fairly contemporary and trendy medium-sized company. Nothing about them was traditional at all. I remember meeting a woman from the Media department, who told me her title was “Social Media Coordinator”. I was confused as to what that department did, and even more confused as to why we needed someone to handle our barely existent social media presence. I figured it was only appropriate that a modern company had such an uncommon position. It was unheard of for large companies to offer coupons on Facebook, and reply to consumer’s tweets. Little did I know, this was when social media was exploding into the forefront of sensationalizing the way companies would communicate to their consumers and vice versa. Even today, I still hear many of my peers doubt that a career in social media can be fulfilling or as important as their counterparts in Marketing or other media disciplines.
(The image is by Paola peralta (Own work) and used under the creative commons license [CC-BY-SA-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons.)
Public Relations Career
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics though, a career in Public Relations (which would encompass the growth of social media), would net someone an average of $95,000. With the population becoming more aware of the benefits of social media, the outlook for this career is expected to increase. Actually, a career focused on Social Media does not seem so uncommon now. Many people imagine that a Social Media Coordinator would just sit at their assigned desk and bombard consumers with tweets and Facebook comments. In fact, a Social Media Coordinator for an organization has many vital responsibilities that impact the organization.
With an increased initiative for an effective social media strategy, organizations will want Social Media Coordinators to:
- Respond to relevant and popular consumer inquiries and concerns via social media outlets since there will not be enough resources to respond to everyone
- Increase brand awareness for the organization to optimize generation of sales leads
- Promote the product and services through effective campaigns to reach target markets
- Manage relationships with consumers so there can be a community of mostly positive reviews that will negate the negative ones
- Analyze traffic of organization website to tailor to what consumers are most interested in and develop social media strategies
In order to become qualified to handle such important aspects for a company, there are some skills necessary to perform the duties well. Although most of the social media outlets are designed to be fairly simple to use, experience with the different platforms would be beneficial in order to get your foot in the door. Listening skills would also be beneficial because they will need to relay that information back to the organization in order to utilize that information to improve the product or service. Companies know that consumers can easily utilize many devices of the digital age now, and a negative review from one person can go viral on the internet extremely quick. It would be in their best interest to have someone manage those relationships before it gets to a dire level. Social media is directly and indirectly affecting the way businesses operate, and organizations cannot afford to let it slip by with mediocre social media strategies anymore.
(All accolades and credit for this tremendous blog post are for Lily Zhang who is the author and content creator.)