I completed a degree in Marketing and, after graduating, opened two small businesses where social media was our single form of marketing. I became super passionate about it when I started to see it have a direct impact on foot traffic and sales. When I was ready to move forward and start a personal career, social media was the thing I felt the most excited about in the future of marketing.
Diving into platforms, social listening, reporting and analytics, quick client asks, content brainstorming and creation, copywriting, and more.
This is a quickly growing field as brands and companies slowly understand how important a purposeful and creative social strategy is for every business. This opens up a lot of creative opportunity and uncharted territory that you get to play around with and test. If you are a creative person or are extremely invested in internet culture, this is definitely a field for you.
Good PTO, remote work possible, flexible work hours,
Social Media is the front line for a company when it comes to crisis communications and good/bad PR. This has become even more evident in recent times as the world makes its way through pandemics, social justice movements, and cancel culture. Brands are having to make statements, show support, defend themselves, etc., and the majority of the time, its the social media person or team responsible for navigating the right way to do that. When those things happen, it can be extremely taxing emotionally and may have you working off-hours or long hours to get through it. Life happens, strategies shift, but you always find a way out of it because people in this industry are smart, strategic, creative, and badass.
Most people I know working in house social media or at an agency started by helping out a friend or small business that needed social media management and strategy. Being able to jump in with little resources and show an impact in that work is a huge quality we are typically looking for when hiring. When applying to Social Media Manager (or equivalent entry-level) roles, make sure you have some sort of digital portfolio. Haven't worked on large campaigns? No problem! Start with your own social media, do passion projects, dive into photography, start a meme account, practice creative writing -- all of these show initiative and a willingness to learn, which are the most important aspects of this fast-changing industry.
General creative skills will probably be beneficial at some point early in your career. Learn the Adobe Creative Suite, practice photography and video editing, play around with every social media platform there is.
From my experience, Marketing and Social Media specifically are very female-driven industries. There is a need for more diversity in marketing, and there is a long list of agencies that have come together (with 600 & Rising) to address these needs moving forward. I am hopeful that there will be some real change soon. Outside of that, agency culture, in general, is tons of fun and is super laid back and flexible. There are plenty of times where you are grinding on a quick turn project and have to keep your head down, so outside of that time, people tend to focus on celebrating wins and team bonding.
Quickly changing and growing industry and position that has only become more important in recent years and will continue down that path for years to come.