The world of social media is among the fastest-growing industries on the planet. The number of Twitter users alone far outweighs the population of North America. Naturally, because these platforms are so big, they produce a lot of jobs.
Social media careers run the gambit from content creation to website maintenance and upkeep. There really is something out there for everyone, it’s just a matter of knowing how to market yourself to get the job. In this article, we take a look at professional careers in social media.
Context is Important
It is possible to have a career in social media. That said, context is important. Your skills will help determine what kind of careers in the vast niche of social media will be available. Remember, we are talking about a segment of the economy that is influenced by billions (yes, with a b at the beginning and an s at the end) of users.
As with any product that is that hot, there are hundreds of thousands of jobs associated with the industry. It’s all about figuring out which one is right for you.
The most interesting and perhaps also most remote career in social media is that of the influencer. People who get paid — often quite lavishly — for simply being themselves on the Internet. Banking on making it big online is a bit of a fool’s errand. The audience may be big but the competition is just as enormous.
Those billions of users we talked about earlier have many options to choose from, and blowing up is just as much a matter of luck as it is skill.
That said, there are ways to use social media to your career advantage that don’t necessarily involve staking all fortunes on going viral. Many people make a point of having a strong social media presence not necessarily to make money from it but to leverage their personal brand to increase their career opportunities.
This isn’t necessarily the same thing as being an influencer — though it does open the door to being influential. However, the movement toward personal branding in the social media space does put a finer point on where the professional marketplace is at.
Even if you aren’t going to be world-famous for your social media posts, having a carefully cultivated web presence can be a valuable asset in business and in life. And who knows? Maybe one day it will pay off big.
If you’re interested in something more concrete and assured than tossing stuff up into cyberspace and hoping it nets a buck or two, think about honing your skills as a web developer. Social media platforms of every variety are constantly looking for talented developers to build new features and perform the constant maintenance that goes into keeping things running smoothly.
These jobs pay very well and can often be done from home making them an attractive option for people who value flexibility.
The other benefit? Learning code and other developer-related skills will take you far beyond the world of social media. Businesses of every variety are now using developers to build out their websites, maintain their digital infrastructure, and so on.
The gist of it is this: learn code now, and have plenty of work for the rest of your life.
The world of digital marketing exists almost exclusively on social media now. Where television was once the grandest of advertising frontiers, things have now shifted toward the small screens. Namely, phones. Most companies maintain a social media presence, which they use to cultivate their brand image, and get the word out about their products and features.
Digital marketers take a business’s branding ideas and filter them through social media platforms.
So, you’re telling me I can Tweet for a living?
Well, yes and no. The job may sound easy, and even fun but it’s more than just punching out a quippy message in one hundred or so characters. To be an effective digital marketer you need to understand data and be able to create actionable posts that both keep with their brand identity and also speak effectively to their key demographic.
It’s a difficult tightrope to navigate, especially when one keeps in mind that they will often be doing it on a variety of different platforms, each with its own standards, tones, and formats.
Much of customer success and relations also happen on social media these days. Businesses are using their accounts as an extension of their customer service department. Customers write in with questions and complaints, and the business addresses them online.
This system adds transparency to their customer relations process while also giving the business a great chance to show off how they handle concerns.
You don’t necessarily need to minor in digital marketing to work in customer success but you will do well to brush up on best social media practices. Not only will this make you stand out on a list of candidates but it will also just help you do your job well.
Remember that every platform is different. What works well on Twitter won’t be so good on Facebook.
And of course, there are also thousands of miscellaneous jobs in the world of social media. Customer support, sales, marketing, and so on. If you want to work in the world of social media, you’ll have a lot of options.
It helps to go in with a versatile set of skills. Knowing how the various platforms work is the very least you can do. However, you will also benefit from a general understanding of technology, data, cyber security, and so on.
Remember, you’re far from the only person who is interested in working in social media. It’s a competitive industry, but with hard work and the ability to market yourself competitively, you can find a fun and lucrative career.