The Ultimate Guide to Become the Best Social Media Marketing Specialist

The Ultimate Guide to Become the Best Social Media Marketing Specialist

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CICCC » Cornerstone Blog » The Ultimate Guide to Become the Best Social Media Marketing Specialist

The rise of the COVID-19 pandemic has changed many aspects of our lives and our society. Nowadays, there is a drastic increase in the importance of social media marketing! With the limited contact with others, social media has become more crucial for many of us to connect with friends and family.

Social media has already dominated the online world even before the pandemic. In 2017, the number of social media users worldwide was reported at 2.86 billion and increased to 3.14 billion in 2018.

In 2021, the number is documented at 3.78 billion users and is forecasted to reach over 4.41 billion users by 2025.

users graphics for social media marketing

So, what are these numbers tell us?

These numbers tell us that social media has opened many doors of opportunity for local and international businesses to communicate with their consumers and reach potential ones. Companies now understand the power of social media and integrate social media strategy into their business tasks.

To become the best Social Media Marketing Specialist, you need to understand social media marketing fundamentals and how it works. So, let’s get started.

What is Social Media Marketing?

Social media marketing is online marketing using social media platforms. Typically, businesses use social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, YouTube, etc., to promote their products and services. Social media marketing involves creating and sharing content, texts, images, promotions, videos, discounts, and influencers.

As consumers, people use social media platforms to share their opinions, experiences, advice or even warnings to others. When people gain more connections in their networks, their thoughts can influence others on the decision-making process and purchase behaviours.
hubspot for social media marketing channels

Social Media Influences Purchase Decision

Studies show that 70% of internet users rely on social media to research products and services to help make purchasing decisions. 31% of them reported browsing social media to search for items to buy. Similarly, a report from GlobalWebIndex found that 54% of social media users research products via social media and 71% of them are more likely to purchase products and services by social media referrals.

Imagine yourself purchasing something online- what will be the first thing you do?

You probably start with gathering information about the product and the company, right?

You might check the company’s social media page, read reviews and compare the price. If the brand’s social media presence is reliable and the product is presented with good reviews. You are most likely to trust the information you have received and eventually make a purchase decision.

That is how social media marketing works – it influences your purchase decisions using the power of opinions.

Why is Social Media Marketing Important for Businesses?

The answer is simple; social media marketing is essential for the growth of businesses. The more time people spend on social media, the more beneficial for companies. Here are reasons why:

  1. Cost-effective
  2. Increases brand awareness
  3. Attracts new audiences
  4. Build long-lasting customer relationships
  5. Helps businesses to learn about their competitors

importance of social media marketing

1. It is cost-effective

Advertising on social media is one of the least expensive ways of marketing business digitally. Companies can grow their brands by posting relatable content and engaging with audiences with so many alternative tools.

2. It helps increase brand awareness

Appalling content and engaging storytelling can catch the attention of all potential customers, which increases brand awareness.

3. It attracts new audiences

Businesses can now access and analyze data on their existing customers’ activities and track their online behaviours with different tools. These data help them to strategize their marketing strategy to gain new audiences.

4. It helps build long-lasting customer relationships

Communication is the key to success. Businesses that can connect with their customers on a deeper level grow immensely. When customers feel like they are being heard and feel more privileged, they become loyal to the brand

5. It helps businesses to learn about their competitors

Accessing competitor businesses’ profiles becomes easy now more than ever. All the public business profiles help companies analyze their competitors’ strategies and improve their digital marketing strategies.

“People do not buy goods and services. They buy relations, stories and magic”– Seth Godin

become a social media marketer

Social Media Specialists are In-Demand

With the increasing number of social media usage in marketing practices, the demands in the digital marketing field are flooding. Since the COVID-19 pandemic, the market has increased 30% faster than any other position in marketing.

The survey from CNNMoney reported that Social Media Manager ranked as one of the top 100 careers based on demanding growth, high income and satisfactory work. Similarly, LinkedIn Internal Data listed Digital Marketing Specialists as the top 10 most in-demand jobs in 2021. Skills such as social media marketing, paid search strategy, search engine marketing (SEM), and search engine optimization (SEO) are the most sought-after.

As the pandemic accelerated the shift to virtual jobs like Digital Marketing Specialist grew in demand, while jobs like Media Coordinator grew the most overall.

Fastest Growing Social Media Job Opportunities

  1. Media coordinator
  2. Search manager
  3. Social media coordinator
  4. Search engine marketing manager
  5. Media manager
  6. Marketing analyst
  7. Search specialist
  8. E-mail marketing specialist
  9. SEO Analyst
  10. Digital media manager

Most In-demand Social Media Jobs

  1. Digital marketing specialist
  2. Digital account executive
  3. Social media manager
  4. Digital marketing manager
  5. Copywriter
  6. Marketing associate
  7. Account supervisor
  8. Marketing assistant
  9. Digital strategist
  10. Marketing manager

social media marketing jobs

Although the demand for skilled Social Media Specialists is climbing in rank, a significant gap between demand and supply for social media roles is presented worldwide. According to LinkedIn, demand for digital marketing roles is rising by 116.4%.  Similarly, a study from The Left Bank report, the need for digital marketing workers remains up to 59%. In comparison, the active digital marketing workers are presented only at 19%.

Companies that can grasp and utilize social media are becoming successful. However, many still struggle to understand and strategize their social media marketing plans.

That is where your role as a social media specialist comes to play.

Who is a Social Media Specialist?

A Social Media Specialist, Social Media Manager, Community Manager, Content Manager and Social Media Strategist are all the same – a person responsible for creating and publishing content on all companies’ social media platforms.

how to become social media marketing specialist

What are Required Skills to Become a Social Media Specialist?

In this digital world where anybody can create and post anything online. Becoming a fluent Social Media Specialist requires more than just posting; it requires the following skills:

1. Communication

The first skill is communication. Communication skills are the ability to listen, speak, observe and empathize. Not only do you have to communicate with audiences online. You also need to be able to illustrate your ideas to your colleagues in a cross-functional team.

2. Writing

All successful social media specialists have this in common: they are excellent copywriters and great storytellers. While images and videos can help you capture the audience’s attention, well-written headlines and descriptions are essential parts that you need to resonate with the audiences’ emotions.

3. Creativity

To generate stand-out content, you need to be able to think innovatively. As a Social Media Specialist, you need to routinely develop new ideas and campaigns to engage with your audiences.

4. Project Management

The best Social Media Specialist needs good project management skills. From planning strategies to executing the plans, solid project management skills can help you stay on top of all tasks and manage them efficiently.

5. Marketing

It goes without saying; a Social Media Specialist needs to have a solid understanding of marketing principles. To carry out social media marketing tasks, you need a fundamental knowledge of traditional and digital marketing and how they work.

6. Strategic Thinking

The recipe for a successful social media campaign requires a well-planned strategy. Most successful social media campaigns involve many approaches and methods. Training your strategic thinking can help you naturally make strategic decisions when needed.

7. Community Management

Did you know what companies like Nike and Lego have in common? – a close-knit online community. Community management is one of the essential parts of social media marketing. As a Social Media Specialist, you need to understand and listen to the online community and build a long-term relationship with audiences.

8. Analytical Skills

In order to know if your social media strategies are working, you need to have the “know-how.” That is where your analytical skills come in handy. To successfully improve your ongoing social media campaigns, you need to understand social media reports and can extract the data that matters.

Now, you understand ideas and have an overview of social media marketing and what skills you need to become the best Social media Specialist. It is time for you to take steps further – Let’s go!

Steps to Become the Best Social Media Specialist

There are many different ways to expert yourself in this industry. Here we are ready to provide top secrets to show you how to become a social media specialist!

Step 1 – Gather your knowledge

In this modern world, you can easily find tons of knowledge that you need available online. However, a lot of information with no direction can quickly become overwhelming for you.

One of the most effective ways to build your social media marketing career is to get formal training with hands-on experience. Cornerstone College offers a Digital Marketing Advanced Co-op Diploma program with a comprehensive range of skills in demand such as advanced SEO, Google Analytics, Facebook Ads, etc. With instructors who have years of experience, you will learn theories and practices commonly used in the digital marketing field.

Step 2 – Develop your skills

Becoming the best Social Media Specialist requires solid communication and writing skills. The acknowledgment of your strengths and weaknesses is one of the keys to success.

As international students, English may not be your first language. If you would like to build a career as a social media specialist in Canada, you can boost your confidence by taking English as second language courses. With us, we will help you improve your communication skills and intensive knowledge of English.

Step 3 – Grow your professional network

Having a broad professional network and many connections can lead you to your future employment. At Cornerstone, we always encourage our students to grow their professional network outside of classrooms. With Cornerstone talk sessions, we invite expert speakers in their fields to share their experiences with our students.

LinkedIn is also a good platform to start building your professional profile. According to LinkedIn, completed LinkedIn profiles can potentially boost your job opportunities 40 times higher than incomplete ones.

You do not need years of experience to build a network on LinkedIn. You can include your experience, whether it’s summer jobs, unpaid internships, or volunteer jobs. The important thing is to showcase what you have learned in those jobs.

Step 4 – Get familiar with social media management tools

The social media management tool is software designed for social media marketers to publish posts, monitor, and manage more than one social media accounts. Knowing how to use the software to manage and report social media will help you achieve your career goal in digital marketing. With our Digital Marketing Specialist Co-op Diploma, you will be able to reach the top digital marketing certifications, such as Semrush, Hubspot and Hootsuite.

What are the Best Tools For Social Media Management?

To create successful social media campaigns, you as a Social Media Specialist need to have an overview of all the tasks. There are many tools and software that are available online that you can benefit from. Most of these following platforms offer free basic plans. You can start learning these tools to jump-start your career.

Tools for social media strategy

  1. Hootsuite
  2. Bitly
  3. Flick
  4. Canva
  5. Adobe Illustrator

1. Hootsuite

Hootsuite is one of the most popular social media management tools by far. The tool covers all functions that Social Media Specialists need to manage multiple social media accounts in one dashboard. Team functions such as tasks assignments, approval process tracking, and calendar plan are convenient for team collaboration. The tool offers a basic plan which you can sign up for free. For more advanced benefits, a service fee will be charged depending on the user’s need.

hootsuite for social media marketing

2. Bitly

Generally, Bitly is used to shorten URL links to reduce character count on social media posts. But the real benefit of the tool is that it could be used to customize links, track real-time click data, track users’ locations and track referral rates.

bitly for social media marketing

3. Flick

In the social media world, hashtags are a powerful tool for Social Media Specialists to reach more target audiences. Flick provides tools for finding Instagram hashtags, manage and analyzing hashtags’ performances and helping businesses reach new audiences.

flick for social media marketing

4. Canva

To create effective and creative designs, the easiest and cheapest way for Social Media Specialists is Canva. Canva is an online design and publishing tool with many creative sources such as vectors, photos, text and everything you need for social media campaigns.

canva for social media marketing

5. Adobe Illustrator

Adobe Illustrator is a more advanced tool for creating more complex designs for social media campaigns. Knowing how to design with Adobe Illustrator is an excellent benefit for advancing your career in social media marketing.

adobe illustrator for social media marketing

Social Media Reporting Tools

  1. Hubspot Marketing Hubs
  2. Google Analytics

1. Hubspot Marketing Hubs

Hubspot Marketing Hub is paid software created for marketers. Hubspot Marketing integrated for Social Media Specialists to manage social media, develop social media campaigns and publish content. Features such as blog, ad tracking & management, video and live chat are also included.

hubspot for social media marketing

2. Google Analytics

To better understand the audiences, Google Analytics is the tool that is widely used among marketing practitioners. As analytic skills are one of the essential skills that all Social Media Specialists should have, the knowledge in Google Analytics will help increase your chance to advance your career.

google analytics for social media marketing

If a professional career in the digital marketing field is what you want to pursue, take advantage of this article and follow steps to become the best Social Media Specialist.

First of all, you should have a solid knowledge of marketing and social media marketing fundamentals. You can find sources you need online or take a formal education with a certified educational institution without having to waste your time on finding trustable resources online.

Second, access your strengths and weakness on skills that are needed in social media marketing. Taking a proper education will help you determine your solid skills and your flaws are. Once you recognize that, you can start working toward the skills that need to be improved.

Next, expand your network and connections. Researching experts digital marketing field and their profiles on LinkedIn pages are one of the most effective strategies to build your association. Joining events where experts are sharing their experiences is always an excellent way to gain your connection.

Last, practice on essential tools needed to manage social media marketing. Having certificates and strong skills in tools and software in high demand in social media marketing can differentiate you from the competitors.

Taking the first step is always the hardest but is also the most rewarding. Our student advisors from Cornerstone International College Team are here to guide you.

Any questions you have, we are ready to help you every step of the way.

Written by Aimwalee Hansen

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