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What Is a Social Media Manager? How to Become One, Salary, Skills.

A social media manager leads a company or organization’s marketing and brand building activities on social media platforms. Social media managers typically strategize, create, schedule and track the performance of social media content, as well as engage their brand’s social media followers across various platforms. Here’s what to know about a social media manager’s salary, needed skills and how to become one.


What Is a Social Media Manager?

Social media managers often help create an organization’s social social media strategy. This strategy provides guidelines on how the brand would like to present itself on social platforms. The social media manager is also responsible for engaging users with their brand’s social media and driving marketing efforts through social media.


What Do Social Media Managers Do?

Social media managers develop brand guidelines, craft digital content, engage with online audiences and gather user-generated content for use on various platforms. This role is responsible for growing a brand’s online presence and following and understanding social media analytics.

Social Media Manager Responsibilities

  • Develop a social media strategy. 
  • Create and oversee social media campaigns. 
  • Craft digital content and post on various social media platforms. 
  • Gather and report analytics on social media engagement. 
  • Reporting metrics to company leaders and stakeholders. 
  • Grow a brand’s following and online presence. 
  • Engage with users through comments and direct messages. 

Day-to-Day Responsibilities of a Social Media Manager

  • Create visual, video and written content to share on social media platforms. 
  • Schedule daily posts across multiple platforms. 
  • Analyze social media engagement data. 
  • Interact with users on social media platforms. 

Social Media Managers Within a Company

Social media managers typically work within a company’s marketing department, and they often collaborate with PR and marketing teammates on social media campaigns and strategy. Depending on the size of the company, social media managers may report to directors or VPs of marketing, growth or communications, and they sometimes are tasked with presenting data to leaders and other teams to keep the company informed on which social strategies produce the best results.

Importance of Social Media Managers

Social media managers have become increasingly important to organizations because of the influence social media has on the perceptions of consumers across various industries. As social media managers are responsible for a brand’s social media presence, they are often at the forefront of customer engagement and handle customer service requests through social media.

A day in the life of a social media manager. Video: Rachel White


What Skills Are Needed to Be a Social Media Manager?

Qualifications to Be a Social Media Manager

  • Strong communication and writing skills. 
  • Knowledge of analytical tools. 
  • An understanding of visual design. 
  • Deep understanding of various social media platforms and their demographics. 
  • Photo and video editing skills.
  • Ability to stay up to date on current trends and news.

Social Media Manager Prerequisites

  • This role often requires a bachelor’s degree in communications, public relations or a related field.
  • Portfolio of social media content and its business impact.

Social Media Manager Hard Skills

  • Knows how to create and schedule content across the major social media platforms.
  • Graphic design, photo and video editing skills.
  • Ability to use analytics tools for data collection and reporting.

Social Media Manager Soft Skills

  • Communication skills.
  • Customer service skills. 
  • Ability to work quickly under pressure. 
  • Has a pulse on current events and cultural trends.

Tools and Programs Social Media Managers Use

  • Social platforms such as Twitter, Linkedin, Facebook, TikTok, Pinterest and Snapchat
  • Sprout Social 
  • Hootsuite 
  • Buffer
  • Zoho Social
  • Canva


How to Become a Social Media Manager

Social Media Manager Education and Experience

Social media managers typically hold bachelor’s degrees in fields that provide relevant communication and business experience, such as communications, marketing, journalism and public relations.

Becoming a social media manager often requires a portfolio of work demonstrating extensive experience and understanding of creating and distributing content for multiple social media platforms. 

Aspiring social media managers can gain valuable experience by volunteering to run a social media campaign for a local event or a small business. They could also start a blog and promote it on social media, or by using influencer marketing techniques to increase the following of a personal profile.

Social Media Manager Certificates and Courses

Social Media Manager Career Path

Many people working in social media start as an intern or an entry level position such as social media coordinator, digital content producer or social media associate.


Social Media Manager Salary and Job Outlook

Social media management is poised to grow steadily over the next several years, with 10 percent growth expected for the field by 2030. As more social media platforms rise in popularity, the opportunities for social media managers will continue to increase. 

The full compensation package for a social media manager depends on a variety of factors, including but not limited to the candidate’s experience and geographic location. See below for detailed information on the average social media manager salary.


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