Want To Work In Social Media? 5 Must-Have Skills

So, have you been considering applying for social media jobs?

Congratulations!

By being a blogger, you are starting to take the first steps toward that type of career.

Maybe you’ve been blogging for awhile. You love interacting on Twitter and post status updates to Facebook more frequently than that annoying friend who spends way too much time with her cat.

But maybe you’re not sure if you’re quite ready yet to approach a business and ask to handle their Twitter and Facebook accounts. Here are:

5 Skills You Need To Get Social Media Jobs

Work in Social Media

Command of a Twitter Management Application

If you are still using classic Twitter to do the bulk of your tweeting, you need to step it up. Social media people need to manage multiple Twitter lists, follow specific hashtags, track replies, mentions and new followers side by side. Twitter doesn’t cut it. If you aren’t using an application like Hootsuite or Tweetdeck, go. Now. Start using it.

Understanding of Facebook’s News Feed and More

Facebook can be a blast when used on a personal level, and seriously maddening when using it on behalf of a business. Facebook changes how it prioritizes what content appears in news feeds a LOT, not to mention its terms of service when running contests and sweepstakes. If you aren’t familiar with the changes and how they can impact a business, you’ll need to get up to speed and stay up to speed.

Availability

“I’m always on Twitter!” you say. But no one can find you if you stay off of your personal Twitter account for hours, days or weeks. When you’re managing a business Twitter account, you need to ensure that you can be available to tweet, respond to inquiries and interact at the times when it’s most optimal for the business, not for your schedule. If you have 3 kids in diapers, a volunteer gig at the school, another part-time writing job and you’re taking a cooking class every morning for 2 hours…you might have a hard time.

Ideas and A Plan

We’d all love to manage the Twitter account for a great company like Zappos or Ideeli. ┬áBut you’ll have a much better shot at landing social media jobs if you target smaller businesses. They are often not well-versed in social media, and they’ll be looking to you to have ideas and a plan on how you’ll grow their social media presence.

Versatility

In what other industry might you need the ability to present multiple personalities? Social media may be the only one. You probably already have a pretty distinct persona on Twitter – whether you like to make wisecracks, talk about reality TV or chat about your meal planning for the week – people are starting to get to know the “Twitter You.”

But that “Twitter You” may not necessarily be the right persona for the business you’re looking to work with. When we’re on Twitter under a personal account, we have the freedom to relax and be ourselves. Not so when you represent a business. You must be versatile enough to switch your voice from you to the business you represent. Make sure you’re comfortable and confident in your ability to do that before pitching your work to someone.

There are many other hands-on skills that come in handy – these are just a few. Keep these in mind as you are building out your blog and developing your social media prowess. You never know when an awesome social media job opportunity might land in your lap!

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Comments

  1. These are great pointers. I learned everything on my own. I wish there would have been more education about social media a few years ago. Now I try to help other women like me who want to get into this field whether it’s for business or for fun. I’m very glad I found this site. Thank you!

  2. These are great tips! I think you’re right about targeting smaller companies first, who may not have any social media presence yet. That would be a great way to gain experience with a lot less pressure!

  3. I am very bad at social media marketing. Can’t get it right, no matter what. I think the problem is that I don’t enjoy interacting with people on the social networks.

  4. This is great! I’m wondering if you have any suggestions on the best resources to come up to speed on Facebook. I’ve got a personal account and a blog community page that I post to through Hootsuite, but to be honest, even though I feel like I have a handle on Twitter, when it comes to FB, I’m clueless. Any recommendations would definitely be appreciated.
    Thanks!

  5. These are some really great tips! I’ve recently downloaded Tweetdeck and am still familiarizing myself with it, but I’d love to start searching for jobs in this sector and there is always so much to learn. Thanks for this and happy weekend, all :)

  6. Just wanted to let you gals know about my new job! In June I went to BBC Seattle and heard for the first time that my blogging experience could be valuable to a business. October 1st I started my new job as Social Media Network Coordinator at the large church we are part of! The job offer was due in a large part to them seeing what II had done with my blog. I just want to encourage other bloggers out there to not minimize the power of doing something you love as a ” hobby”. You never know where it may take you! Here is a link to my story if you are interested- and thank you so much Sits gals for opening my eyes to my potential! http://thelittlebrownhouse.us/2011/10/25/how-my-blog-got-me-a-new-job/

  7. nice one

  8. I just got TweetDeck thanks to this article :)

  9. Those are definitely some great tips. I’ve been handling some of the social media management in my current job, but I really need to step it up if I’m going to turn this into something more.

  10. All great advice. I just got started on TweetDeck after reading this. It’s confusing but I’m figuring it out.

  11. I see so many new social media businesses, but the people really don’t know what goes into social media; sadly, neither do their clients who are small businesses who heard that they needed a Facebook page. As my blog has grown, my respect for the profession of social media has grown, because I have a full plate managing my blogs – I couldn’t imagine taking on clients too. My hat is off and I also bow to those who give it a go!

    Great post!

  12. Great advise. I would live to do that. My son has a small business and no time to do that. It would be great for me to help and learn as well humm food for thought.

  13. Fantastic post! Until I began actively using Twitter as a business tool, I never realized how much work it really was. It is so different to use social media for personal reasons vs. promotion! It is tough sometimes.

  14. This is a great post! I started a social media management company this year and it is not all fun, like a lot of people think. I love it but it’s about strategy, planning, organizing, marketing, and creating relationships.

    The great thing about jobs with social media is that they are so new that you can really bring a lot of creativity to the table.

  15. Great advice! I do have to wonder if some people out there think that because they live on FB or Twitter a good majority of the day and write a blog it automatically makes them qualified for a business or social media job. For a split second I thought that way then I realized that like any other job you need training. The foundation is already there of course but transitioning from every day life networking to business networking requires professionalism and savvy. Definitely not easy but for some I’m sure it’s well worth it.

  16. This is a job I have applied many times for and hope to land on day. You can make quite a bit of money that way and it is not a bad job when your good at it.

  17. You never know when a job will drop into your lap is TRUE! I went to my podiatrist for an ingrown toenail two days ago, and she offered me a job for her and her 4 partners updating their blogs, after I told her about going to Bloggy Boot Camp in Atlanta this past weekend. And now, I’m thinking about talking to her about Tweeting for them as well.

    It’s crazy, but cool to think that I’ll be able to earn some pocket money in such a random way.

    Who knows where it might lead?

  18. These are great tips! Thanks for sharing :)

  19. All good advice. I’ve been doing just this for a couple of small businesses. Some of the things to think about are what are you willing to do and not do. Also, it’s important to be realistic about your knowledge base and abilities. I’ve been doing some catch all things for people including some very basic marketing pieces. I utilize my InDesign program but I’m clear with people that I’m not a trained graphic designer. You never want to over promise and then not be able to deliver.

  20. Great tips! I need to work on some of these.

  21. Great tips – which do you prefer Hootsuite or Tweetdeck?

    • I think it’s a matter of personal preference. I would recommend trying both. I prefer Tweetdeck, but probably because that was the first tool I used and got very accustomed to it. They both have their pluses and minuses. Tweetdeck is a downloaded software (they have a browser version but it is not as full featured for business work) and Hootsuite is browser based. I’d venture a guess that most business professionals tend to use Hootsuite over Tweetdeck just for that reason – Hootsuite is more mobile. It’s more robust overall.

  22. Great advice. These are some great tips. I’m sure when working for a company, it can be like any job, and NOT so fun.

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