Exploring the Heart of Social Media Careers: #TChat Preview & Recap

There are thousands of them: Strategists, Specialists, Editors, Coordinators, Contributors, Community Managers. And that’s just in California. When you search for “social media jobs” on Indeed, for example, there are nearly 6,000 related jobs that come up. I have no idea what it would’ve been like just five years ago, but I’m sure it was only a fraction of that.

All things social have permeated the enterprise, as well as small to mid-size business. Both B2C and B2B companies, non-profits and government agencies alike are creating social media careers.

What’s really driving it all? Social recruiting and social marketing – sourcing applicants and sourcing buyers. Since the meteoric growth of social network populations, it behooves companies to source “leads” from these populations. Early adoption is over and we’ve headed right into the heart of mainstream social.

But there’s also a newer third wheel to this social media hubbub. It’s customer service community management. The democratization of the consumer’s voice has created more transparency than companies had planned on. And because they no longer control the message (how many times have you heard that in the past few years?), the buyer controls them.

In fact, some companies have gotten better at social customer service than their traditional channels. For example, last year I needed to cancel an online subscription to Adobe. I tried doing it online, emailing them and calling them, but to no avail. At the point of being livid with frustration, I went on twitter and tweeted from the rooftops for them to cancel my subscription. Within hours it was taken care of by one of their “community managers.” Amazing and fascinating at the same time. I’m sure you’ve read dozens of similar sentiments.

And now we’re seeing employment brand community managers around social networks like Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and others as well as HR/recruiting technology vendor community managers. These are talent/lead acquisition relationship builders first, sourcers and salespeople second.

Yep, headed right into the heart of mainstream social and not a moment too soon. Get your social skills on everyone!

Join us tomorrow night on #TChat, November 30, from 7-8 pm ET (4-5 pm PT), when we’ll take a closer look at social media careers today.  @MeghanMBiro will moderate and here are the questions we’ll cover.

(EDITORIAL NOTE: To see highlights from the chat event, see the Storify Slideshow at the end of this post. Thanks!)

Q1: When you hear “social media careers” what do you think of?

Q2: What are the primary skills that make for savvy social media careers?

Q3: Companies are hiring social media everything, but what’s the best way to source and screen these applicants?

Q4: Do HR/recruiting departments need social media managers to help with employment brand? Why or why not?

Q5: Social media careers have to be community-centric and constantly engaging. Why?

Q6: What businesses/industries have the best social media managers? The worst?

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