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How many hats does a social media manager wear?
Depending on what you require from them, your social media manager will wear many, many hats.
Some have a very specific area of expertise with certain skills, such as SEO-optimised copywriting or creating great visuals; and others specialise in certain platforms. Whatever their area of speciality, they will tend to be a jack of all trades, covering most aspects of social media management.
So how many skills does your average social media manager possess? These are just the tip of the iceberg.
Social media isn’t just a case of posting the odd image or tweet. A social media manager won’t begin a campaign without properly researching and developing a strategy that will gain the most awareness for their client’s brand. A social media strategy will involve everything from working out who your ideal customer is and where to find them; researching your competitor’s performance on social media: researching the most appropriate and relevant hashtags to use, and finding relevant industry news to share to your followers.
If you’re not providing any content for your social media manager, then they’re creating it for you. This falls into several categories which I will cover in more detail. Suffice it to say, though, it’s not just a matter of posting the odd image or tweet!
Social media posts generally perform better if they have a relevant image alongside them. Are you providing your social media manager with visuals for the content they’re posting? Depending on your industry, stock photos - especially free stock photos - will only go so far. Chances are, your social media manager will also be your brand photographer, taking images to accompany their posts. And they’ll also keep an album of images they’ve snapped by chance, as they know it will look great on a future post.
It may be that your business holds live events which someone needs to capture on video to post to your social media platforms. Even if your social media manager doesn’t film the video themselves, they will be editing it for optimal use.
If you haven’t provided any images, then they will need to be created from scratch. That’s where your social media manager grabs their graphic designer hat to create some great visuals to accompany your posts. Even if you have provided images, they may still need a bit of a tweak to be incorporated into your overall brand identity. Each image will need to be optimised for size, according to which platform it’s being posted to.
How much written copy are you providing your social media manager? Most of the time, they will be writing the copy for all your posts. Whether it’s long- or short-form content, a lot of thought and planning will have gone into the copy they’re writing to raise awareness for your brand, making sure they’re incorporating relevant keywords into the text to ensure your brand is identifiable in searches.
From hashtags to relevant influencers and keywords, and best times to post to which platforms, there is a lot of research involved in social media.
We don’t always just offer social media as a service, a lot of us are consultants so we advise people on the best way to do it for themselves.
And those are just a handful of the roles undertaken by social media managers. Are there any others you can add to them?
Social media management is by no means an easy or a limited role, and it’s constantly evolving. The next time someone tells you that it’s just posting the odd photo to Instagram, just show them this blog!