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6 Steps to Build a Successful Career in Social Media Marketing in 2024

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21st Sep, 2022
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6 Steps to Build a Successful Career in Social Media Marketing in 2024

It’s effortless. All you need to have is a little flair for writing and a little knowledge of Photoshop and your status has to be ‘online’ always. Simply put, on paper, this is what it takes to be a social media marketer. The popular perception is social media marketers spend their days just ‘playing’ on various social media marketing channels; quite in the same way, an individual scrolls through the endless newsfeeds of interesting information and engaging updates from their ‘friends’. If you are a beginner in digital marketing, and want to gain expertise, check out our digital marketing online courses from top universities. 

With the advent of social media and organisations aiming to build a robust online presence, the industry of digital marketing has seen a huge spike. The market is projected to expand at a CAGR of 17.6% from 2021 to 2026, reaching an estimated value of USD 807 billion (Source).

There are various reasons why marketing is a good career. One of the important reasons is how marketing allows brands to leverage their business by doing good marketing. Marketing aids the business in reaching its customers and give a personalised touch. 

Another reason that makes marketing a good career is its highly rewarding nature. On average, a marketing manager earns 7.4 lakhs per annum (Source). This figure could vary, guided by various factors like location, skill sets, experience, type of company, etc.

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There are various job roles in the marketing field that the professional can choose to pursue. Some of those job roles are mentioned below-

  1. Marketing Coordinator
  2. Marketing Manager
  3. Marketing Consultant
  4. PR Manager
  5. Social Media Marketer
  6. Brand Manager
  7. Marketing Specialist
  8. Marketing Analyst
  9. Chief Marketing Officer

These are some of the broader spectra of jobs mentioned above. There are various types of job roles available in marketing; for example, there are diverse types of social media marketing jobs available in the market, such as social media manager, social media marketing intern, PR Manager, SEO marketing, etc.

Professionals apprehensive about how to get into social media marketing must be clear of various skill sets which they should be well versed in. Some of those skills are mentioned below-

  1. Communication
  2. Creativity
  3. Social media technical skills
  4. Content creation
  5. Flexibility
  6. Project Management
  7. Marketing
  8. Networking

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However, what if you are serious about it? What if you want to mint money out of social media marketing? The truth is, it is as complicated as any other career and is pretty demanding as well. No doubt, social media marketing is a growing field and offers endless opportunities, and the demand for social media marketers is also high. Nowadays almost anybody and everyone terming themselves as social media experts and competing for open spots. If you are thinking about building a career in social media marketing, you have to adhere to some rules.
Social Media Marketing
Let’s start with some common myths about social media marketing as a career:

Myth #1: Social media marketing is easy.

No, it’s not. It requires creativity, attention to the detail, data analysis, proper research and above all patience.

Myth #2: Social media marketing is treated as an experiment.

No, it should not. It requires long-term strategic planning and focus.

Myth #3: Social media marketing is objective rather than subjective.

No, successful and engaging campaigns can’t be built on instincts or sheer guesswork. Social media campaigns have to be data-driven and made on objective results.

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Myth #4: Social media marketing doesn’t require institutional knowledge.

Wrong. Every discipline has some basic rules, basic guidelines, which need to be learned. Social media marketing is no exception.

In-demand Digital Marketing Skills

In-demand Digital Marketing Skills

Now let’s put the focus on the six steps to building a successful career in social media marketing:

1. Be A Voracious Learner

Social media marketing as an industry is incredibly fast-growing and extremely competitive. Every day you have to learn a new trick and unfold a new chapter. A social media marketer needs passion and desire to succeed.

Some tricks of learning social media marketing are strategy building, consistently posting, relatable content creation, etc. These types of marketing tricks would allow the marketer to create content that is engaging and can connect a bond with the user. 

Unless and until the user cannot relate with the content you are producing, the traffic will remain slow. Moreover, no matter how good the content is, if there is no consistency in posting, it will not result in any good for the brand. 

How Mobile Marketing Is Quickly Eclipsing Desktop Marketing?

2. Educate Yourself

The formal qualification is something which will build the sub-structure on which the superstructure of a successful social media marketing career can be formed. There are several short courses offered by universities and other institutes. You can educate yourself through online classes. Attending conferences, seminars and lectures dedicated to social media marketing can also be a great learning experience.

A strong social media reputation is not a fluke rather, there are always well-thought strategies behind it. Those technical skills would come in handy at the time of actual work as they are the foundation of any critically thought out ability.

Some of these technical skills are mentioned below-

  1. SEO
  2. SEM
  3. Data Analysis
  4. Content Creation
  5. Strategic Thinking
  6. Paid Search
  7. Email Marketing
  8. UX Designing
  9. Video Marketing
What’s the Best Type of Content to Drive Conversions?

3. Always Stay Updated

Be a regular visitor to major digital marketing sites and social media influencers. Remember, major players such as Google, Facebook and Twitter regularly tweak their paid advertising platforms and algorithms. So you have to be a thorough vigilante.

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4. Learn the Industry Jargons

A social media marketer should know the digital terminology such as SEO, PPC and SEM to analyse different digital media campaigns and understand what strategies worked and what didn’t.

For example, SEO stands for search engine optimisation. It is used to increase the inbound traffic to the website. Increasing traffic is not the only purpose; rather, improving both the quality and quantity of the traffic is the primary purpose. 

SEM stands for search engine marketing. This digital marketing strategy is used to enhance the website’s visibility on search. This visibility enhancement also has a technical name known as search engine result pages (SERPs).

PPC stands for pay-per-click. As the name suggests, advertisers must pay a fee each time their ads are clicked upon. They are buying the visitors to the website.

5. Be A Nerd

A career in social media marketing is often perceived to be quite glamorous, but the truth is, it should be more data-driven and technical. Basic knowledge of HTML and graphic design would help you stand out.

HTML is known to be the foundation of various marketing tools. It helps in integrating codes into marketing campaigns. It also aids in the customization of web pages, web layouts, tracking of user behavior, etc. Having technical expertise is also a robust way of how to get a job in social media marketing.

6. Build Your Brand

If you want to be successful in social media marketing, your online presence should be robust. If you’re going to show your client that you are the right person to build their company’s social media visibility, then you need to show that you have already built your brand.

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Engagement on different social media channels is now a top priority for most companies. They want to know how best to use Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and other sites to build their brand and gain market share. Social media, as a business tool, is a relatively recent development. So, the employers may struggle to find new employees with a proven track record. Also, that, in turn, will help professionals in this field with an edge. If you are serious enough to build a career in social media marketing, keep the pointers mentioned above in mind and utilise the opportunity that lies in front of you.

If you are curious to get into the world of digital marketing, check out MICA & upGrad’s Advanced Certificate in Digital Marketing & Communication. Become an expert in email marketing, social media marketing, content marketing, branding, marketing analysis, and PR.

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Hitesh Motwani

Blog Author
Hitesh is a founder and CEO of Socialopedia, Digital media consulting company. His experience in Digital & Social media marketing, public relations, corporate communications and branding spans more than a decade. In an earlier endeavor with Ogilvy and Mather, he led some of their flagship clients such as Twitter, Future Generali Life Insurance, Swiss Re, Bandhan Bank, EXIM Bank, CFA and many more. He also enjoyed heading the PR and Marketing department for Crompton Graves and leading the account for Tata Group when he was with Rediffusion Y&R. Hitesh has been training various participants on Digital Media Marketing for close to a decade and he has consulted several start-ups. He is a passionate digital media trainer and a visiting faculty at IIM Bangalore.
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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1How to become a successful social media marketing manager?

Social media marketing is an evolving career option, and there is no fixed curriculum to study social media marketing. You need to learn the skills of social media marketing on the job by constantly educating yourself on the evolving trends, experimenting with different content types, analysing audience behaviour and being data-driven, and at last, you need to be curious about the subject.

2What are the five core pillars of social media marketing?

The first pillar is social strategy- it includes your goals, the social media platforms you will be using, and the type of content that will be used to attract the audience. The second pillar is planning and publishing- reaching out to maximum potential customers on social media. The third pillar is listening and engagement- analysing the feedback and resolving issues. The fourth pillar is analytics and reporting- how the posts have performed and its impact. And, the last and fifth pillar is advertising- reaching out to maximum users and the target audience through displaying ads on social media.

3Why is social media marketing important for businesses?

For businesses, it is important to be present where their customers are. As the internet now plays a key role in everyone’s life nowadays, businesses cannot ignore its potential. Through social media marketing, it helps businesses in improving the SEO ranking of the website, connect with customers, improve brand loyalty, increasing traffic to the website resulting in increased sales and brand awareness. Also, social media marketing is a cost-effective way of advertising strategy.

4What are the five steps of social marketing process?

Although there can be various ways to build a robust marketing process but commonly used five steps of the social media marketing process are mentioned below- Identify the target audience Locating the target audience on social media Building relatable content for your product or service Create a goal in terms of number, metrics, etc. Allocate budget

5What is the social media strategy cycle?

The social media strategy cycle allows organisations to build a robust marketing strategy. The cycle helps the organisation in identifying and locating its target group. The cycle could include creating strategy, positioning the product or service, creation, optimization of content, etc.

6How social media can be used for business 2024?

With the advent of technology and digital media, social media presence has become essential for any organisation. Everyone aims to build a positive online presence, from minor to big businesses. Businesses can use social media to acquire new customers, retain existing customers, build brand loyalty, overcome competition, generate more revenue, analyze data, etc.

7How do you attract social media audiences?

Social media audiences can be attracted using various ways, such as- 1. Giveaway contests 2. Meet the celebrity contests 3. Inclusion of visual aids such as pictures, stories 4. Engaging videos 5. Behind-the-scenes videos 6. Popular hashtags 7. Cnsistent postings 8. QnA rounds 9. Webinars 10. A unique value proposition that gives a reason to follow you

8How do I start content creation?

To start with content creation, the following steps could serve a good purpose- 1. Come up with the topic you want to create the content for 2. Undertand your target audience, which type of content they would like 3. Research as much as you can 4. Write a rough idea as to what you want your final content to look. 5. Write your content 6. Shoot, edit, repeat 7. Look for any errors in your content 8. Publish

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