Our SMS professionals serve as ambassadors for our certification program here at NISM. Not only are they knowledgeable about our curriculum, but they also share our passion for social media. Best of all, their stories help shape our organization and the work that we do here.
Our “Meet and Greet” series introduces you to one of our SMS professionals and shares their story. It is our hope that by sharing these stories, not only will you learn more about others who share your passion for being an SMS professional, but that you also will want to connect with them further. We encourage you to “meet” this featured individual by reaching out to them through your favorite social media platform or comment at the section below this article.
And with that, we’d like to introduce you to Dave Acosta and his story.
Hi, Dave! Please tell us a little about yourself and the work you do.
I am a PR Specialist and Chief Storyteller for Barracuda Public Relations in El Paso, Texas. We work with a wide range of clients to share their stories, increase brand awareness, inform the public and, in general, tell people about all the exciting things our clients are doing to make El Paso a great place to live, work and play.
What about your job makes you the most excited?
We work with such a wide variety of clients — from public transportation projects, to nonprofit foundations, national franchises, events and universities — that no day’s work is exactly like the last. There’s always something to be excited about when you have that much variety in your day-to-day work.
How does your SMS certification work hand-in-hand with your position at Barracuda PR?
As a PR Specialist and Storyteller who is often the client point of contact, being a certified Social Media Strategist has helped me better understand the formation and implementation of social media strategies, best practices, and overall the best ways to utilize social media to tell our clients’ stories — and better explain to clients how we manage their accounts and why specific pieces of the strategy or practices are important. It also helps me better communicate to our social media team – which is responsible for creating content, writing captions, scheduling ads and posts, etc. — what our clients’ needs are and help shape their needs to fit the strategy.
We’re so glad your certification has been beneficial to you and the work you do. In order to renew your certification you need to complete 20 Continuing Education hours each year. What are your favorite ways to obtain those hours?
My favorite way to obtain the hours is through the free webinars that NISM provides. Taking the time to not only attend the webinars, but participate and review the materials that NISM and their guest speakers provide is always time well-spent. Everything in social media is constantly changing – new platforms, new tools, best practices. The webinars provide a good way to stay up-to-date on what’s changing and what’s new.
That’s great to hear! Often our webinar attendees are curious about becoming certified. What advice would you give to someone currently studying for the SMS exam?
You got this. Take notes and study the book, but overall, if you use your common sense and what you already know about social media, communication and strategic planning, passing the SMS exam shouldn’t keep you up at night.
100% YES! That’s fantastic advice. Before we let you go, can you tell us something about you that not everyone would know? Something unique about yourself!
Previous to joining Barracuda in 2018, I was an entertainment reporter for El Paso Times by day and a DJ by night. DJing at local bars and clubs helped me pay for college and I still enjoy playing every now and then, in fact, most of my personal social media still revolves around music and DJing because I still enjoy being part of that community.
We love learning about interests and hobbies outside of social media, and that one is pretty impressive! Dave, Thank you for your willingness to share your story with us. Keep up the excellent work!