12th June, 2013

If you’re thinking about applying for social media jobs then you should consider the different aspects of the role before doing so. Social media gets mistaken as a job role for just sitting on Facebook all day. If anyone asks you, ‘so, what do you do as a social media manager or consultant’? And before you’ve even replied you know what they’re thinking. Well that is not true. What is true is that if you want to be a successful social media consultant or manager, your daily work load should be ten times more than what people think.


Before you even start looking at putting a strategy together, you must look at who your client is and what their aims are. What is their business all about and what do they want to achieve from this? Without knowing what they do it’s impossible to pin point any campaign which would suit their business needs. Having business skills is essential before even considering the option of applying for a social media job. The reason being, you need to be able to relate to your client in terms of what they require for the business area they’re in. As a social media consultant or manager, you must put yourself into the clients shoes and think of a campaign which suits both parties. By having these business skills you can determine areas such as how the company wants to be perceived to their audience and what social platforms they should be setting up in correlation to their business strategy.

Social and Internet Usage

If you want to work in the social media industry it’s an absolute must to know how and when to use the tools. You must have knowledge of current and ongoing trends within the industry to keep up the fast paced, ever-changing social media world. The basics include using a number of the most popular social networks, such as Facebook, Twitter and Linkedin, to the management tools such as Hootsuite and Tweetdeck. Even though there is much more to a social media job than just using the tools (such as creating a 3 month social media strategy), it can be of use to know the basics. By understanding and using social media/internet skills, you can then use it to fine tune your strategy in order for it to be used effectively.

Marketing Background

Social media marketing isn’t just accessing your client’s social media pages and posting something out like three times a day. When talking about marketing skills, I mean how to generate new business using some sort form of tradtional marketing method. Many people will be disillusioned in thinking that because they can use Facebook, they can successfully deliver a social media strategy…completely wrong! You do need to have some sort of marketing background to have an advantage as you’ll be looking to create new ideas to help push your social campaign, i.e a sweepstake or contest. Thinking outside the box is a must, for example, if something isn’t working, what are you going to do in order to make it work? It’s about being more proactive and less reactive.


It’s not all about posting and re-tweeting things all day, although those are the little things, there’s so many different aspects to the every day life of a social media consultant when completing a social media campaign. Being on the ball and able to adapt to your surroundings is a must as things change on a daily basis within social media. You will need good organisational skills in order to priortise your workload. Social media comes in big and small jobs which can change at any time. Social media runs in your sleep, that’s an indicator of how much it changes in a short space and time.

Customer Skills

One of the most obvious skill-sets and one that most positions require is the fundamental customer skills. How important is customer skills within social media though? One of the most! If you can’t give great customer service face-to-face you definitely will struggle behind the keyboard. Building relationships and answering any queries online is different to on the phone and face-to-face….everyone is watching you, one slip up and millions can potentially see. Therefore you must be extremely responsive, make sure that nothing gets unread and always respond to good and bad feedback. It says it all in the title ‘social media’, you have to be social and easy to talk to.

I’m currently a customer of the 4G network EE. From what I’ve researched and heard, their company’s customer service is one of the worst in the UK. This was not my opinion, but the impression I got from reading a few reviews. I recently had a problem with an outstanding payment which I was wrongly charged for, therefore I tried to contact the company via telephone. After being on hold for absolutely ages, in frustration, I took it to their social media. Now, although the response wasn’t what I wanted, it gave me a great idea to prove how customer service shouldn’t be on Twitter! I tweeted EE’s official Twitter account something along the lines of ‘I need to speak to someone regarding an outstanding payment which is incorrect’, I further expressed my concerns, yet the company’s only response to that was ‘is there anything we can help you with via Twitter?’ After being on hold for literally an hour, I felt my face burning up, I tweeted back in anger ‘the reason why I’m taking this to Twitter is because you lot never answer your phones, I NEED to speak to a manager or someone on that level’. Guess what…I got the exact same automated response, ‘is there anything we can help you with on Twitter?’

This is a perfect example of bad customer service on social media. Could the company have sounded more programmed and robotic? Customers like to feel that they are talking to humans, not someone who isn’t even slightly interested in your problem. After a series of emails and phone conversations, this was solved, but I did have to mention to them about their Twitter management…


If even the large corporate brands can’t do it properly, that just shows whether they’ve got the right people for the job or their strategy is set out completely wrong.

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