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SO YOU THINK YOU CAN HANDLE SOCIAL MEDIA: THE 6 ESSENTIAL SKILLS YOU WILL NEED

The last decade has seen the creation of jobs that simply did not exist ten years ago. SEO specialists, app developers, and wall scouters (those in the fashion world who hunt for photo and Instagram backdrops, of course) did not exist prior to the opportunities created thanks to the accelerated enhancements in technology taking place. One of the most popular and necessary jobs that has become almost a basic requirement amongst large and small companies alike, is that of the Social Media Manager.

While many small brands think they either don’t need a social media presence and, therefore, a social media manager, or that they can handle the tasks one would perform, the truth is that there are numerous reasons why a social media manager is crucial to any business, big or small. We’ve put together a few words below to help highlight some of these reasons and make your decision a no-brainer.

SOCIAL MEDIA MANAGER JOB DESCRIPTION

Social Media Managers are responsible for developing and implementing marketing strategies for a business’s social media sites. This might include blogging, creating social media profiles, managing regular posts and responding to followers.

Not only that, but they must stay at the leading edge of industry trends, so they can create a marketing strategy that generates inbound leads, gains followers, and creates a positive image for the company.

They are also responsible for regularly evaluating the success of their marketing efforts and tweaking their marketing strategy as needed. While just recognizing this list of responsibilities and tasks as quite comprehensive should make the necessity of a social media manager clear, the following list of reasons should emphasize this.

TECHNICAL SKILLS

SEO knowledge

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Search Engine Optimization has great impact on your social media strategy. A social media manager knows this, and knows how to optimize SEO by aligning it with the overall social media plan. As marketing approaches with inbound focuses, both SEO and social media have the ability to bring your customers and audience members to you with the potential to build actual relationships and communicating with them, rather than at them. SEO and social media are both directed by content, and content is the cornerstone of your SEO strategy. The social media manager is the gatekeeper and promoter of much of this content. When thinking about your social media manager’s approach to SEO, ask the following questions:

  • How will they promote your blog content on social media?
  • Do they understand the connection between exposure on social media and increased search rankings?
  • Do they know how driving traffic to the company’s website impacts the bottom line?

Social media expertise

It seems obvious but the social media manager must have social media skills! This includes knowing what type of content works best on what platform, optimizing content accordingly, as well as understanding the different nuances of each platform. As this changes dynamically with time & geography, they must necessarily devote some time each day to keep themselves update with the trends in the industry.

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They should know how to engage an audience through social media posts and interactions, and should hopefully find some joy in doing just that. Social media is one of those skills that is not as easy as it may seem to the untrained professional, so you need to the social media manger to become an expert who can truly take your brand’s online presence to the next level.

Customer service specialist

The importance of social media as a customer service tool is unmatched today, and a good social media manager will know how to best communicate with customers and audience members. If customers see branded account posting inspirational quotes and product images on a regular basis, but ignoring their direct inquiries and social media comments, this will have obvious negative implications for the company!

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A social media manager will know how to best handle all customer interactions, and a successful social media manager knows that the social media presence is the brand’s face online; that everything they say or do on social media is a representation of the brand – for good or for bad.

Social media management tool masters

A social media manager must become a master of the tools they use. If you still think a small business doesn’t need a social media manager, think of how long it took to simply figure out how to use any of the new programs on your computer when you first got started! A social media manager usually comes with a deep knowledge and a comprehensive understanding of the tools in their digital tool belt, and will know how to use these tools to direct the marketing strategy at hand.

While a ‘trained’ social media manager with a host of Social Media Management tools is a preferred choice, it is not a necessity! Because, like all else, these skills are learnable, and quite easily so for a person with a passion for this role! They then need to seamlessly apply their knowledge to the content marketing strategy.

CREATIVITY

Copywriting skills

As you have come to recognize by now, a social media manager is a skilled jack-of-all-trades. Along with being an expert in social media, customer service, and SEO, a social media manager has to have at least rudimentary copywriting skills. The ability to convey ideas in a clear & precise way can mean the difference between a sale and business fail.

When your customers and audience members can easily understand the messages being conveyed on your social media channels, there is an obviously higher chance that they will leave with a positive sentiment towards the brand.

Visual intelligence

While much of the social media manager’s output will be in writing, visual content to accompany posts is crucial. The right photo can mean a post gets shared a hundred times rather than ten times, and having someone who knows what images will work, and when, is invaluable to the organization.

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A social media manager will also have general knowledge of design in order to create visually appealing graphics to coordinate with appropriate posts–a skill that is incredibly valuable in today’s media landscape. With video an ever-increasing component of social media strategies, a social media manager will know great video when they see it, and most importantly have a firm grasp of social video trends and how they fit into each major network.

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