Hiring social media managers has become increasingly crucial for businesses in recent years, as social media platforms have gained significant popularity and have become integral to marketing and communication strategies. Here are some key points to consider when hiring social media managers:
Technical Skills to Look For on a Social Media Manager’s CV
The technical skills you seek in your ideal social media manager may vary wildly depending on your organisation, industry, and nuances of the role. The skill level you require will also depend on the size of your company. Creative agencies may employ a social media manager to manage an entire department. On the other hand, small businesses may hire an individual to manage the social media function working alongside a digital marketing manager. Whichever way you work, here are some technical skills that are generally considered essential for someone in this role:
Your new hire should have a strong understanding of major social media platforms, such as:
Individuals should also understand which channels are most appropriate for your brand. Look for experience in managing and optimising accounts on these platforms.
Your successful applicant should be familiar with CMS platforms such as:
- Drupal, Joomla
Professionals in this field will likely have experience in just one of the above, which they use to publish and manage content on various social media accounts.
Proficiency in using social media management tools such as:
- Sprout Social
Many other similar platforms help digital marketing professionals schedule, analyse, and manage social media posts across multiple channels. If an individual has experience in one multichannel tool, they are likely to pick up another very quickly if it differs from the one already used within your organisation.
Experience with social media analytics tools. There are too many to mention here, as each platform has its own analytics and many third-party apps. They should understand how to track metrics, analyse and interpret data, and use insights to improve social media strategies.
As a basic, professionals in this field should have a solid understanding of Google (Universal) Analytics and GA4. While GA is more of an SEO tool than social media, it enables people in this role to measure website traffic, conversions, and user behaviour driven by your brand’s social media campaigns.
Good working knowledge of social media advertising platforms, such as Meta Ads Manager, Twitter Ads, LinkedIn Advertising, or Instagram Ads, is essential if you want your new hire to run paid campaigns. Look for experience creating and optimising ad campaigns, targeting specific audiences, and measuring their performance.
Professionals fluent in graphic design tools like Adobe Photoshop or Canva will create visually appealing images to help your brand stand out. Familiarity with video editing tools such as Adobe Premiere Pro or iMovie may also be helpful, but only if you require them to create and edit videos.
Understanding search engine optimisation (SEO) principles and knowledge of keyword research tools like Google Keyword Planner, SEMrush or Ahrefs. Even in companies that employ an SEO manager, knowledge of SEO will help create content that performs better in search results.
Experience with social listening tools such as Brandwatch, Hootsuite Insights, or Mention to monitor brand mentions, track industry trends, and gather insights on audience sentiment.
Knowledge of email marketing platforms like Mailchimp, Zoho, Drip, Constant Contact, MailerLite, GetResponse, Campaigner or HubSpot will enable individuals in this role to integrate email campaigns with social media efforts and drive engagement. However, some companies prefer to separate the responsibilities of an email marketing manager as it is a specialist role.
In addition to technical skills, several soft skills are crucial for effective social media managers. When evaluating candidates for this role, assessing the below soft skills alongside their technical competencies will help identify individuals who are well-rounded and capable of managing the diverse responsibilities of the position.
Effective communication is at the core of social media management. The ability to convey messages clearly and engage with your audience is essential for building brand awareness, managing customer interactions, and driving engagement.
Social media platforms are highly visual and crowded spaces, making creativity a valuable asset. Therefore, the person you hire should be able to think creatively, develop unique content ideas, and create visually appealing graphics to help your brand be heard above the noise and capture your audience’s attention.
Social media trends and algorithms constantly change, necessitating an adaptable mindset. Therefore, the person you hire must be open to new platforms, techniques, and strategies, readily adjusting their approaches to stay relevant and meet evolving audience preferences.
Analytical skills are crucial for understanding social media metrics, identifying audience behaviour patterns, and making data-driven decisions. Social media managers must be able to analyse KPIs and use data to tweak their strategies and achieve desired outcomes.
Social media is often a direct channel for customer interactions, making strong customer service skills essential. The ability to empathise, provide timely responses, and effectively address customer inquiries or issues contributes to positive brand experiences and customer satisfaction.
Social media managers often work closely with other teams and stakeholders, such as marketing, PR, and design. Collaborative skills enable effective coordination, alignment of messaging, and cohesive brand representation across various channels.
Social media managers encounter various challenges, from technical issues to customer complaints. Solid problem-solving skills enable them to identify and address issues swiftly and effectively, minimising the impact on your brand’s reputation.
While having a degree in a relevant field can be beneficial, it is not necessary for social media managers. Practical experience, skills, and demonstrated competence are often more critical in this field. Many successful social media managers grow their expertise through hands-on experience, self-study, and staying up-to-date with industry trends.
Employers should therefore prioritise skills, experience, and ability to deliver results. Individuals may prove their suitability for your role with evidence from their own social media channels, practical experience, industry certifications, and track record of successful social media campaigns.
Ultimately, a combination of relevant skills, experience, creativity, and a strong understanding of social media platforms and trends is more valuable than having a degree.
Challenges Employers Face When Hiring Social Media Managers
One of the main issues employers face when hiring someone for this position is that the rise in popularity of social media has led to the market becoming saturated with entry-level skills. For employers, the high volume of entry-level applicants presents both a challenge and an opportunity. While identifying the most qualified candidates may require more effort, it also provides a broader talent pool and the potential to find individuals with fresh perspectives and innovative ideas. That aside, there are several other challenges employers face when hiring for this position, including:
Defining the specific skills and qualifications needed for the role can be challenging. The social media landscape constantly evolves, and employers must determine which skills and expertise are essential for their industry and target audience.
For example, an e-commerce brand might seek someone with experience collaborating with fashion influencers on Instagram to drive sales. In contrast, a nonprofit organisation might prefer individuals with experience creating successful social media campaigns to drive fundraising efforts through storytelling, crowdfunding, donation drives, or peer-to-peer fundraising initiatives.
The successful individual you hire will be your brand’s voice and interact with customers and stakeholders. Finding candidates who possess the necessary skills and align with your company’s values, brand image, and communication style can be challenging.
Social media management involves handling multiple platforms simultaneously, each with unique features and best practices. Employers may need help finding candidates proficient in managing various platforms and adapting their strategies to each one effectively.
Social media is a rapidly changing landscape, with new platforms, algorithms, and trends emerging regularly. Employers may need help identifying candidates who stay informed about the latest trends, tools, and best practices and can adapt strategies accordingly.
The best social media managers can drive tangible results, increasing engagement, website traffic, and conversions. Employers often need help evaluating candidates’ track records and determining their ability to deliver measurable outcomes based on previous campaigns.
Social media managers must be creative and innovative while maintaining brand consistency and effectively conveying the company’s message. Finding candidates who can balance creativity and adhere to your brand guidelines can be challenging.
In recent years, a massive upsurge in demand for skilled social media managers has led to a competitive job market. Employers may need help attracting and hiring top talent due to the high demand and limited pool of experienced candidates.
How We Can Help
Partnering with a specialist digital recruitment firm like Adria Solutions can help your business secure the best digital talent, including social media managers. Here are some ways we can help you stand out in a competitive market:
Being specialists in our field, we know the digital landscape and understand the specific roles, skills, and qualifications you need. We stay updated with emerging trends, technologies, and best practices, so we can identify top talent and assess their fit for your needs.
We have an extensive network of professionals within the digital industry, including social media managers. Tapping into this database of qualified candidates gives you access to a pool of passive job seekers who may not be actively searching for opportunities but could be a perfect fit for your role. Opening up your business to a broader talent pool lets you connect with more potential candidates quicker.
We handle the time-consuming tasks of candidate sourcing, screening, and shortlisting so you can get on with your job. By leveraging our networks, online platforms, and other recruitment tools, we quickly identify suitable candidates, assess their qualifications, and conduct initial interviews. Our rigorous vetting process ensures you only see the most qualified candidates, saving your hiring managers significant time and effort.
Time is of the essence when hiring social media managers because their world moves so fast. We can help streamline your hiring process by coordinating interviews, managing candidate communications, and facilitating feedback. Choosing us to act as your liaison ensures a smooth and efficient process that reduces delays in communication and improves the candidate experience. In turn, you reduce the risk of losing top candidates to your competitors.
We have our finger on the pulse of the latest hiring market knowledge and can provide expert insights into salary ranges and compensation packages in the digital industry. We can guide you in structuring attractive offers that align with market trends, ensuring you remain competitive in attracting and securing top talent.
Most relationships we have forged with our clients are well-established, long-term partnerships. Developing relationships over time enables us to deeply understand our client’s culture, values, and hiring needs. This puts us in an excellent position to tailor our service to your company’s unique requirements and quickly pinpoint the talent you need.
The information on this page is correct at the time of publication. However, as technology evolves so rapidly, the requirements of this role may change. For tailored hiring advice unique to your circumstances, please speak to our expert team of IT, Digital and Marketing recruiters.