Good news everyone—social media marketing is actually becoming a real-life job, not just something you are tasked to do because you have already gone on the coffee run and they can’t think of anything else to assign you as the intern that day (not a personal experience, I swear). We actually live in a world where you—yes, even you, lowly Internet marketer—can get paid real money to do “stuff” on social platforms all day long!
I do this already, and I personally love it, not because I have an excuse to watch that new fail video of cats jumping off stuff, but because I am able to connect brands to the people they serve. To “do stuff” on social media is one thing, but it is a whole other thing to successfully represent a brand online. So here are five ways you can start your social marketing right in the year 2015.
1. Always Triple-Check Spelling and Grammar
This may sound like a “duh” statement, but let me tell you, it will save you a lot of pain—and possibly save you from having to find a new job. Not only check for spelling and grammar errors, but also be sure to check for context and timing. Read the posts slowly and out loud. You may seem like a crazy person to your neighboring colleagues, but you will catch things you would have missed normally.
Social media moves quick, and in order to thrive, you are going to have to keep up with what is trending. Afterall, that is what social virality is all based on. This next year, we will see the continued rise of visual-based media, which means things like Twitter and Facebook will possibly take a backseat. We have already seen this when Instagram was valued at around $35 billion whereas Twitter was valued at $18 billion. Get used to being uncomfortable and learning new things.
3. Learn to use Basic Photo Editing Tools
With the rise of image-heavy social media platforms, you are going to need some high-quality images. You may also need to do some editing of said images. Get used to the editing program of your choice, because waiting around for someone to help you with it is going to be a doozy. Personally, I prefer practicing in Photoshop (and alliteration), but you can use whatever works for you. Remember, the more tools under your belt, the better.
OPTIONS INCLUDE BUT ARE NOT LIMITED TO:
- Adobe Photoshop
- Adobe Illustrator
- Mircosoft Paint
- Instagram image editors
- Images taken from your cell phone camera
4. Learn Basic CSS and HTML
As jobs in the Internet marketing area are becoming more and more demanding, you need to have more skills to stand out among the competition. Basic HTML and CSS editing are not going to be enough to rewrite a crashed website, but they will certainly be a good start as you contribute to online forums.
5. Start Following Industry Thought Leaders
Rub shoulders online with the people who are leading the way in social media. Pick the ones that you feel you can relate to and start listening to what they have to say. But be warned: they are not beyond sin. Sometimes they can be wrong too.
When it comes down to it, social media is not as much set in stone as it is a liquid, ever changing medium. To work in social you are going to have to learn to be flexible by stepping outside of your comfort zone and learning the things you don’t have a mastery of yet. Social media is like a speeding train: if you want to catch a ride, you are going to need to catch up to speed in order to jump on. The longer you wait, the more you are going to regret it. Start running and hold on tight!