The evolution of social media from a tacked-on, part-time position to a full-fledged career is fascinating to see. It has grown in the past 10 plus years from being optional to an integral part of an organization’s growth and success.
Job titles for the social media professional vary from the more straight forward and serious to the fun and witty. Depending on the company you work for, you can oftentimes craft your own title.
I searched LinkedIn to see what titles were used to describe various social media careers. Here are some of the results:
As positions and titles in social media careers increase, so do the skills needed. Many of the skills for different positions will overlap and often one person will have several social media related responsibilities.
Some of the skills that the social media professional may need to possess are:
With all the variety and opportunity found in a social media career, and often, overlapping skills required for whichever position you find yourself in, education and training are more important than ever. At the beginning stages of social media as a job, many of the skills were self-taught and acquired through experience. You learned by the seat-of-your-pants and developed skills as you went along. It was an exciting time full of growth. It was also full of lessons learned and in time, best practices were developed and job descriptions more defined.
Social media has progressed to a position that needs to be earned, not only by experience, but also by the ability to show expertise in both knowledge and execution of the skills required for this career. The more proof you can show of your ability to perform and get results, the better chance you have of landing a position. Add to that the value of learned knowledge and skills in a classroom, be that a virtual or physical setting.
With so many positions now available in social media and so many people going after those positons, you need to stand out in both experience and knowledge. We firmly believe that providing educational opportunities for those wanting to get into social media and for those who want to advance in their profession, is a smart way for them to enhance their skills and take their career to the next level.
What that opportunity looks like to us is a Social Media Strategist Certification. We strive to provide both knowledge and practical application in our course and focus on six content domains that we feel will give the social media professional a well-rounded education and advantage going into the marketplace.
Looking at all the titles and skills listed earlier, we feel that our educational offerings fit well into these areas. We offer strategic planning, marketing & communications, research & analytics, project management, community management, and compliance & governance. Beyond that, we provide continuing education opportunities that give the social media professional the opportunity to continue to grow in their knowledge.
Whether we learn in a classroom, self-study, internship, webinar, reading, or through practical experience, we can all agree that what we put into our professional growth is what we’ll get out of it. How we choose to invest our time and resources is a personal preference. What’s important is that we do invest in ourselves. To do so benefits not only ourselves, but the people we serve and the organizations we work for.
“An investment in knowledge pays the best interest.” – Benjamin Franklin
Author: Teri Kojetin
Teri Kojetin is the Administrative Services Manager for NISM (National Institute for Social Media). Teri has a background that ranges from teaching in Mexico as a missionary for 15 years, administrative services for 12 years and 4 years of community management in social media agencies before landing at NISM where she combines both her administrative and social media skills.
Teri has been involved in non-profit charitable organizations in both a volunteering capacity and campaign management. Teri believes that providing all-around support to others, along with an attitude of learning and living out your passion, leads to fulfillment and success both for others and for herself. When she isn’t working, Teri enjoys journaling, painting, cooking, camping and spending time with her mini me granddaughter.