Finding the right person for the job can seem daunting. Who am I kidding, it can actually be daunting. It’s hard enough to identify the tasks of the position, let alone identify the individual’s skill sets for completing those tasks. A position that I see a LOT of need for, is a social media marketer. Often, businesses don’t know they need one, or they don’t realize that this position could be, or should be, separate from other marketing positions within the company. In this article, I’m going to identify the 7 skills that will lead to someone being a good social media marketer. These are not in a particular order of importance, FYI.
OK, why the heck does my social media marketer need project management skills or experience? Marketing campaigns ARE projects. Like anything else, social media marketing (SMM) requires communication between people, departments, etc. Successful campaigns are often paired with or planned around product launches. What about product knowledge, service details, or venue information? Your social media marketer needs this information collected and archived for campaign creation, and implementation. SMM has to be managed. Having project management skills will really help your social media marketer do this position effectively.
Their ability to interact with people is hugely important. SMM IS communication. Having skills to be able to easily and smoothly interact with people is a huge benefit in fulfilling the tasks of this position. SMM is about developing relationships online. People with great social skills can do this effectively, with only written words, and still, maintain the social rules of media channels. If someone is really awkward, or struggles to communicate, in person, that usually transfers across the lines to social media.
Can your candidate think logically, and process information easily? Can they create solutions in a step-by-step way? SMM uses a lot of analytics and data. Your candidate needs to have experience in understanding how to gather this data, how to apply it to your current goals, and how to make changes to improve the numbers. Like most marketing campaigns, the audience has to be identified and understood. Being able to think in an analytical way, will allow someone to be far more self-sufficient and effective at SMM.
Your candidate should have this skill from the start! They need to be able to write content for the purpose of marketing or advertising. It is essential to SMM. The bane of a social media marketer’s existence is copywriting. Making sure that the content is written with intent, and catered to the right audience. Though SMM exists of far more than simply written words, this skill is an absolute must.
Design / Creativity
Does your candidate have any experience, previous jobs, or hobbies that are design based, or creative? Creativity is a huge factor for SMM. This is another commonality to many marketing positions. If your SMM becomes boring or predictable, you’re in trouble. Being creative AND consistent will make the biggest difference in your engagement. Some candidates can add to your SMM with graphic design skills or video editing skills. Adding as much creative content as possible is beneficial to your social media campaigns.
Marketing is results driven. It’s a marathon, not a sprint. It’s constantly changing. It takes time. Sometimes, that’s a long time. Blogs can take years to generate business. SMM can take many, many months to start getting traction. SMM will have a direct impact on your branding, and it complements your marketing. Despite how good your social media marketer is, or will be, it’s still a game of patience.
Social media is the land of trolls. Not like cute little trolls with bright neon fuzzy hair. There’s always going to be those people who are negative, confrontational, and combative. It’s easy for people to hide behind a keyboard and turn negative. It’s hugely important for a brand to remain positive. I’ve seen far too many companies, large corporate Fortune 500 companies, fall victim to the troll bait on social media.