Entrepreneurs

Council Post: 10 Essential Career Tips If You’re Just Starting Out In Social Media Management

Social media management is a career field filled with limitless opportunities in our increasingly digital world. More companies than ever before are searching for tech-savvy social media managers who can level up their social media content and reach wider audiences.

In a competitive, trending industry, it’s critical to know how to stand out and put your best foot forward. For professionals just starting out as social media managers, 10 Young Entrepreneur Council members offer their best advice below.

1. Work On Other Skills Too

Offer more in your repertoire than just social media management. Few companies are going to offer full-time roles only working in social media, and on its own, it’s not a particularly high-skill capability. Be willing and prepared to offer a broader array of content marketing capabilities, including the ability to write case studies, publish longer-form articles and create visual assets or content for marketing brochures or websites. You’re more likely to find a good marketing opportunity where social media is a component of the job, potentially leading to a more focused role. – Jake Goldman, 10up Inc.

2. Find Mentors

Find people who are doing it right and who are having success with social media. Follow them and use them as a guide. There is no point in reinventing the wheel and trying to figure out your own way of doing it. If it is working for them, follow their trends and apply them to your market. That is the easiest way to stay on top of the changes with social media. – Lisa Collum, Top Score Writing

3. Get Creative With Engagement

If you want to succeed as a social media manager, I suggest finding creative ways to engage with your audience. For instance, you could host a caption contest or a giveaway for customers who share user-generated content. You’ll also want to have at least one live stream each month. Use this opportunity to allow your followers to ask questions and get to know your company through you. I’ve found that people are constantly seeking out fun and interactive content. Think outside the box and you’ll have no problem growing your social presence. – John Turner, SeedProd LLC

4. Recycle And Repurpose Content

Keep in mind that you don’t have to constantly be churning out brand-new material. It is totally okay to recycle content. If you’re doing your job properly, you should be earning new followers pretty consistently anyway. This means that the seemingly recycled content might be entirely brand new to some of your following. The last thing you want to do is burn out because you feel like you constantly have to reinvent the wheel. Also, recycling old content doesn’t necessarily mean posting the exact same stuff. You can simply take inspiration from some of the older stuff on your social media channels. It can communicate the same message and maybe even use some of the images that were originally used. Remember, your main focus is driving engagement. – Nick Venditti, StitchGolf

5. Provide Clear Brand Messaging

Understand the message of the brands behind the platform. Social media is so much more than likes and comments. It’s a way for brands to have a voice and personality as an extension of their website. Be clear on your messaging and adapt your social media presence to encompass that message. You will attract more customers who will stay loyal to the brand because of that messaging. – Mary Harcourt, CosmoGlo

6. Be Human

When speaking for the brand, use one human being’s voice, not how you think “brands” sound. Don’t be overly political sounding with high-handed jargon. Social media management is a phenomenal way to have cool one-on-one interactions with old or new customers. If you behave like one person speaking to another, your brand will sound human. If you behave like a “brand,” you risk sounding a little stodgy and forced. Insist on top-tier design for social feeds and bulletproof grammar and spelling, but remember that social media is also the place you can let your hair down, be a little silly and have fun with your customers. – Tyler Bray, TK Trailer Parts

7. Make Playful Content

Make your content as playful as possible. It’s important to be professional, but you also want to show some personality. This will make your content more engaging and help you build a stronger relationship with your audience. Additionally, don’t be afraid to experiment with different content formats and strategies. The only way to find out what works best is to try new things. – Syed Balkhi, WPBeginner

8. Factor In Constructive Feedback

Don’t ignore valid criticism. There are a lot of companies out there that have ongoing controversies and a severe decline in quality. If you look at their social media page, you would think that they are better than ever with no problems in the world. This disconnect from reality will result in people having a negative reaction when they see your brand name pop up in their feed. Instead, learn how to engage with your audience and keep a crystal-clear line of communication, and address questions or concerns as they arise. – Chris Christoff, MonsterInsights

9. Be Selective When Taking On Opportunities

Don’t take on too much too soon. Social media management seems easy, but it can actually take a lot of time, especially when you just start it. It’s also tempting to take on many accounts because you want to make good money and turn it into a solid career. That could be a mistake because there are learning curves you will need to go through and you don’t want to make mistakes with a lot of different clients. Take on two or three accounts and see how they do. That way you can take time with each one of them to make sure all your client’s needs are met and ensure no mistakes are made. Once you do well with them and have good management of those clients, take on a couple more and grow into your career. – Baruch Labunski, Rank Secure

10. Take Time To Experiment

My best advice is to have an experimental mindset. While there are social media best practices, there’s room for creativity based on your audience, industry and other factors. Your best bet is to experiment with content and use split testing in your social media campaigns from the very beginning. Compare ads with each other, try different colors and text and target various audiences. You’ll get better outcomes when you collect data and build your campaigns based on what you learn. This is the key to being a successful social media manager—not throwing things at the wall and hoping that something sticks. – Blair Williams, MemberPress

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