I remember when the “social media manager” role first started cropping up years ago but boy has the role changed and evolved overtime. In fact I think it has changed so much that the title no longer describes the actual function that the “social media manager” performs. A few years ago the social media manager was the person who monitored various social sites and responded to relevant conversations. Then, the social media manager was the person who did all of that plus figure out how to run marketing promotions and service customers. Then it was on to developing policies, educating employees internally, developing communities, and on and on it went.
When you look at what most “social media managers” do today it goes far and beyond managing a particular channel. Here are just some of the common functions that these managers are now tasked with doing:
- running campaigns and promotions
- developing loyalty programs
- developing strategies for other departments such as marketing, sales, pr, product, hr, and others
- education employees internally on how to engage with customers and with each other
- create content
- improve the user experience both on-site and offline
- attend events and speak at conferences
- measure and report performance
- learn, understand, and integrate back end systems (such as CRM)
- demo products and services
- host webinars and briefings with bloggers, press, and analysts
- come up with product ideas, usually around “social” integration
- provide insight on future trends and their organizational impact
I realize the social media manager thing has stuck over the years and now it’s the popular role to hire for, but these guys and gals do much more than manage social channels. These social media managers are helping change their organizations into social businesses from the inside out. These people are true “customer and employee engagement strategists” not “social media managers.” I know a lot of great social media and marketing managers out there and here’s a big thanks to all you who are doing such a great job (whether or not you always have support is another question). You guys are really helping move organizations forward and I know there’s a lot that everyone can learn from you guys!
Here are just a few of the great social media managers out there and the companies they belong to:
- Maria Ogneva (Attensity)
- Blake Landau (Blue Kiwi)
- Lauren Vargas (Radian 6)
- Lauren-Hall Stigerts (nGenera)
- Sonny Gil (DeVry University)
- Amber Naslund (Radian 6)
- Jon Ferrara (Nimble, is also the CEO)
- Ric Pratte (Jitterjam, who is also CEO and I believe largely running their social efforts)
Again I know there are many many others, if you are a social media manager or help run social media for your company I’d love it you left your name, the company you manage social for, and perhaps a little tidbit about yourself.
What do you think about social media managers and how their role is evolving? What do you see happening with social media managers in the future?