How to Land a Job in Social Media
With the popularity of platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn, social media isn’t going anywhere soon and is an industry in itself where you can find career opportunities in
As advances in technology continue to emerge and become increasingly accessible, so too has the growth in internet and social media use. According to We Are Social and Hootsuite’s annual internet report, there were 3.19 billion social media users in 2018, which increased by 9% to 3.48 billion in 2019. In the Philippines, Filipinos spend an average of 10 hours, 2 minutes on the internet via any device. According to the "Digital 2019: Global Digital Overview." 4 hours of this is on social media, which is almost twice the world average of 2 hours and 16 minutes.
A lot of this is to view local and international news, entertainment, voice their opinions, and to connect with other people. Additionally, this is where many discover new products, services, careers, and even social causes. Comparable to a social equalizer, social media is where any nationality, gender, or economic class are on equal footing as users have more-or-less the same access to information and opportunities as the next person.
Many organizations have expectedly taken this into consideration, integrating social media into their marketing strategies, and hiring entire departments to focus solely on these initiatives. With that said, there are a number of jobs that exist now on social media which you can build a career in, and the following are ways on how to go about doing that.
Use social media
While this is an obvious piece of advice, there is actually more to it than you may assume. For one, social media platforms undergo constant updates, and personal use for an extended period will have likely made you familiar with the various changes each platform has undergone through the years, whether its a change in algorithms, usability, or even just aesthetics.
Additionally, having personal social media accounts will help you remain attuned to an audience’s perspective. You will, after all, be leveraging social media on behalf of your client to appeal to a certain audience or target market.
From an application standpoint, you can use your professional profile to show prospective employers how well you can curate content and be creative using digital means. Be mindful of what you post, however, shying away from content that could be deemed offensive or controversial, and as much as possible avoid picking sides on the political spectrum. It’s one thing to show your social media proficiency, it’s another to show that you may be a liability in a company’s social media initiatives.
Connect, connect, and connect some more
It would be remiss to advise you to use social media and encourage you to build a career related to it, without you benefitting on exactly what most social media platforms are designed for, and that is to connect with other people. Each is designed to focus on a certain aspect, such as Reddit for social news aggregation, and Instagram for photography. From a professional context, LinkedIn is the most obvious examples.
It is with the latter where you can best give yourself a professional headline, profile picture, and collect recommendations from colleagues, friends, and even teachers. This is no place to be shy, and clearly stating your knowledge and accomplishments will help in potential employers wanting to connect with you
It's in career-centered platforms where you can also follow agencies and companies where you would like to find a job and be updated with their vacancies. By following or connecting to your preferred employers, you are able to better anticipate when they have Social Media Specialist or Social Media Writer vacancies, and other related positions, while already having the means to immediately reach out to them and apply.
Expand your ‘SocMed’ knowledge
While cropping photos, uploading videos, and posting quotes are seemingly simple, there is of course more to social media. With that said, would you happen to know the intricacies of Facebook’s ads manager, Instagram’s algorithm, Twitter’s analytics dashboard, or LinkedIn’s home feed? Do you have any inclinations to where these platforms are headed in the next few years? What about the latest updates to each one, as well as the new platforms gaining popularity?
Working in social media means you’ll need to be an expert. This means keeping up with how fast the social media landscape is changing. A hunger for information will help you as you apply to, and eventually work with, clients who will rely on your knowledge and solutions. Remember, if you asked ten social media experts for their opinion on a social media post, you’d likely hear ten different opinions. So make yours be one worth listening to, backed by substantial knowledge and effective solutions.
Consider marketing agencies and/or media companies
While almost anyone can use social media, there is arguably no other more adept at this than the marketing agencies and media outfits who have long integrated it into their processes.
These are where you can find a number of social media job opportunities. For one, social media planning and management is a service now commonly offered by digital marketing agencies, resulting in them always being on the look-out for social media specialists to come into their fold. The same can be said of media organizations, who, while not always offering outsourced services, are involved in a number of media platforms, with the internet and social media being among these.
So if considering a job in social media but not knowing where to start, a marketing agency or media organizations may be the ideal fit, given it is exactly among their specialties, and finding opportunities here may be slightly easier than that in-house in other industries. These are places to become a Social Media Intern, or specialized roles like that of a Junior Video Journalist or Web Copywriter.
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