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Social Media Strategist Job Description

April 19, 2011

Social Media Strategist Job DescriptionCompanies all over the world are scrambling to hire someone to help lead them into the world of Facebook, Twitter, Quora, or any other social network that will be emerging as the next giant over the next few years.

Different companies use different titles to describe this person; social media strategist, social media manager, social media marketing manager, community manager. Some people are even referring to them as gurus, ninjas, experts, or my favorite, Jedi’s (these titles actually make my skin crawl, please avoid them).

One thing is apparent, there is a lot of misunderstanding and confusion about what kind of experience and knowledge a social media strategist should have. Over the past few weeks I researched social media job postings in a variety of industries. From that data I compiled this job description. As with anything this may not exactly fit with what you are trying to accomplish, so please feel free to modify as needed. Also, please leave a comment and link to the job posting should you decide to use this description.

Social Media Strategist

Responsibilities:

  • Develop and maintain a comprehensive social media strategy that defines how social media marketing techniques will be applied to increase visibility and traffic across all [insert company] brands and products
    NOTE: An effective comprehensive social media strategy will manifest itself in the form of a “road map” that can be used by all brands/departments within a company to develop section specific tactics. This offers a certain level of autonomy and creates opportunities for creativity.
  • Lead the development of organization-wide social media management standards, policies and rules of engagement for social media
  • Define key performance indicators and implement enterprise level measurement, analytics, and reporting methods to gauge success
  • Mentor and provide training to communication and management professionals throughout the organization on best practices for creating, managing, monitoring, and developing content for social networks
    NOTE: The person must have the ability to effectively communicate complex and technical theory and information in an understandable manner
  • Work with all [insert company] brands to explore and identify ways to integrate social media into business strategies and marketing campaigns
    NOTE: This is where internal communication skills and the ability to adapt come in. The ideal candidate will have a proven track record of working with administrators and executive level management to coordinate projects.
  • Apply marketing research and development methods to learn and understand emerging trends and technologies and to communicate this knowledge clearly and concisely
    NOTE: Part of the social media strategist’s job is to make sure your company stays on top of emerging trends. In the interview, ask candidates how they stay on top of their game. Do they read blogs? Which ones? Do they participate in industry specific Twitter chats? Which ones?

Experience:

  • BS/BA degree from an accredited college or university and 3-5 years experience in advertising, communications, marketing, or public relations
    NOTE: I have seen many people posting jobs where an advanced degree is preferred. This is fine if we are talking about an executive level position, but ideally, the social media strategist would overlap into a variety of departments including communications, human resources, IT, R&D, etc. True integration happens in more than just one department.
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills
  • Knowledge of graphic design best practices and principles for both print and web projects
  • Strong technical background with advanced computer skills
  • Ability to work independently and as a member of a team, as well as independently
  • Aptitude to develop and maintain strong working relationships with both internal and external stakeholders
    NOTE: the social media strategist will be charged with managing online communities. To be most effective, look for someone who has experience volunteering with non-profit groups in their community, or serving on the board of directors for a community organization. These people are more likely to have the skills necessary to your social communities.
  • A solid understanding of ethical search engine optimization techniques
    NOTE: Test this! Google the name of your candidate, if they know how to apply search engine optimization they should appear at least a few times on the front page of Google results, even if they have a common name.
  • Exceptional leadership capabilities and strong interpersonal skills
  • Extremely strong communication and presentation skills
  • Demonstrated experience and a passion for the social technology universe (i.e., Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Foursquare, Flickr, blogs, wikis, RSS, social bookmarking, discussion forums and community software)
  • Experience with online monitoring and measurement platforms including but not limited to Omniture, Facebook Insights, YouTube Insights, Google Analytics, HootSuite, TweetDeck, and Social Mention.
  • Experience with creating and identifying quality social media content related to [insert industry specific topics here. I.e. healthcare, fitness, healthy lifestyles, parenting, etc.] is preferred
  • Experience developing and launching email and text messaging campaigns preferred
  • Ability to work effectively under deadlines and juggle several assignments simultaneously
  • Ability to distinguish and behave with a good sense of decorum; acting as a brand ambassador is absolutely required
  • Data, analytics, and metrics oriented

Technical Addendum:

  • Experience using:
    • Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Outlook 2007 or 2010
    • Adobe Design Suite CS4 or CS5 (Photoshop, InDesign, Illustrator, Dreamweaver, Flash)
  • Strong understanding of HTML and CSS
  • Knowledge of web usability best practices, website navigation design and flow, content classification, and content management methods and systems

Is there anything I missed? Is there something that I included that you don’t think is necessary? Please, leave a comment and tell me about it.

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27 Comments leave one →
  1. July 21, 2011 12:52 am

    Last night, I was thinking about a suitable job title for the new career that I’m pursuing. I’m making a career change into writing, marketing and strategy. I’ve chronically been on the net figuring out how to clarify the job and the steps needed to make the change. This description is pretty close to what a I think a “Social Media Strategist” would do and what I might do. Cheers.

  2. elizabeth permalink
    September 15, 2011 11:41 am

    Can you recommend any online training programs?

    • Nicholas Dragon permalink*
      September 15, 2011 1:21 pm

      Blogs – If you want to learn about SEO, check out SEOmoz.com. If you want to learn about Social Media, look for people like Chris Brogan, Seth Godin, Tamar Weinberg, and Brian Solis. They each have their own blog and speak regularly at events around the country.
      Webinars – I try to participate in at least one webinar each week just to keep up on trends. Most webinars are free and the best part is you can watch them from the comfort of your sofa!
      Twitter – Find reputable social media professionals on Twitter and follow them. People such as those I mentioned above are constantly posting links to articles, whitepapers, webinars, or other learning opportunities. They are a great resource for learning about the social media universe.
      Wow, lots of great ideas coming to mind. I think this may require a new blog post. How to become a reputable social media professional…
      Thanks for leaving a comment.

      -Nick

  3. February 7, 2012 11:18 am

    Awesome man. I’m trying to get a new teammate in our company to fill this spot. This was really helpful.

    Best
    Nahum

  4. June 3, 2012 4:21 pm

    Love the cracking blog, keep up the excellent work.

  5. August 24, 2012 12:07 am

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  6. Swobb Shop Online Romania permalink
    September 18, 2012 8:36 am

    Hi there just wanted to give you a quick heads up.
    The text in your content seem to be running
    off the screen in Safari. I’m not sure if this is a format issue or something to do with browser compatibility but I figured I’d post to let you know.
    The design look great though! Hope you get the problem solved soon.
    Thanks

    • Nicholas Dragon permalink*
      September 18, 2012 11:41 am

      Thanks for the heads up. I will check it out.

  7. April 11, 2013 2:05 am

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  9. ashmi permalink
    May 6, 2013 9:18 am

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  13. June 13, 2013 4:07 am

    Hi there! This article couldn’t be written much better! Going through this article reminds me of my previous roommate! He continually kept preaching about this. I am going to send this article to him. Fairly certain he’s going to have a very good read.
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  14. July 2, 2013 6:01 am

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  15. July 29, 2013 1:52 pm

    Nice Web site, Maintain the useful work. Thanks for your time!

  16. Sreejita permalink
    January 6, 2014 11:41 pm

    Great JD. Very comprehensive and to the point. I will definitely use this for a similar position in our organization. Apart from that, your website is also a treasure-trove. Thanks!

  17. January 24, 2014 3:57 pm

    great content. Keep up the good work.

  18. February 17, 2014 3:27 pm

    I love reading through an article that can make people
    think. Also, thanks for allowing for me to comment!

  19. April 13, 2014 10:29 pm

    You really make it seem really easy with your presentation but I to
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  20. April 17, 2014 7:48 am

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  21. August 14, 2015 5:48 pm

    Reblogged this on Quantum Woman Entrepreneur.

  22. michelle permalink
    August 26, 2015 2:57 pm

    Thank you, very helpful. will be back. Love the read

Trackbacks

  1. The Hoojobs Guide to Social Media Jobs & Salaries | The HooHireWire
  2. Social media marketing jobs for DUMMIES | Jobs in Social media marketing for Dummies
  3. Interview | jmr254

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