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Becoming a Social Media Specialist

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The social media is a dynamic field which requires you to be constantly in touch with a variety of clients as well as the media. In fact, social media specialists are also known as public relations specialists or media or communications specialists. The social media specialist performs a variety of functions that are based on the person or firm that they work for. The task of the information specialist is to create as well as promote a favorable image for their employers. Their work is also to keep the public well informed as to the current policies as well as goals of the organization or employees.

The social media relations specialists need to be aware of the needs, requirements, responsibilities, attitudes as well as opinions of the customers and audiences. The field of the social media is a dynamic one and it is one which necessitates a dynamism that requires being in touch with a good number of media personnel as well as clients. The roles and responsibilities of the social media specialists range from writing press releases and organizing press events to handling the occasional crisis that may arise. While most companies have a social media department, others hire a professional social media specialist to do the job.

Education as the social media relations expert involves graduating or as an under graduate to complete specific programs. There are specific degrees with which you can make a foray into the field of social media relations. Some of the more respectable degrees consist of the following:

  • Communications
  • Public relations
  • Journalism
  • English
  • Literature
  • Business administration
  • Psychology
  • Public speaking
In fact, it is important to focus on a course or program that is concentrated on writing as well as communicating.

Networking is extremely important in a social media specialist job and this proves helpful for getting a foot on the door. A lot of social media specialists are social by nature and this is why they tend to visit the gatherings more often. Find out the fields that are frequented by the PR folk and the local media and this along with getting to know people helps build a solid network that helps you out in your job.

Training with the local social spots and hubs and acting as a social media relations specialist in your neighborhood is something that gives you much needed experience. Other than helping you learn all about the different aspects of the job, you also know about the duties and responsibilities that are expected of you from your workplace when you apply for a full time job. Employers are impressed if you can ask them for what you want.

As an information specialist, you can gain experience by working in the electronics media or the finance field. In fact, there are a lot of companies that seek for under graduates who have experience in the news media. Accreditation by the Public Relations Society of America is also approved for the social media relations jobs as a sign of competence. Candidates require 5 years of experience and need to pass a written and oral test for the authorization.

The career prospects for social media specialists are good and promotion comes with experience. Beginners can move on to more challenging positions and then scale up the ladder. In fact, social media relations professionals have more options for variety, and according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the number of jobs in this category is expected to grow by 2014.

The median salary for the social media specialist is $44,000 per year, and with the growth and expansion of communications technology, this is likely to increase. With stiff competition, this field attracts a lot of applicants from good educational backgrounds. The middle level social media relations experts can earn $51,000 which can go up to $81,000 for the experienced staff. The benefits include:
  • Paid vacations
  • Health insurance
  • Retirement plans
The office of the social media specialists is comfortable as well as attractive and the working hours can be erratic, varying from 35 to 40 hours a week. Busy schedules however are a part of the social media relations jobs with unpaid overtime. Sometimes, the social media specialist has to travel, give speeches, be on call for an important client or even attend night conferences with celebrities.
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 professionals  employers  social media  organizations  educators  Public Relations Society of America  competencies  journalism  functions  needs

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