How to become a social media marketing specialist

Infographic Thumbnail: How to become a social media marketing specialist

by Michelle Filippini | May 16, 2013

For many, the term “social media” conjures up cute cat videos and the latest celebrity meme. But memes can take many forms.  Increasingly, businesses are taking advantage of social media channels to create buzz about themselves, their brands, and their products and services. According to a 2012 survey by small business online community Manta, small businesses have caught the bug: 90 percent of owners are now networking online, with 74 percent believing it to be equal to or greater than in-person networking.

Why are these businesses engaging on social media? Simply put, because it allows them to reach millions of consumers easily and cheaply. In September 2012, California-based Facebook reached a milestone number: 1 billion monthly active users, CNET reported, with 618 million daily active users reported by the end of 2012. The mind-boggling numbers reflect a 25 percent increase in monthly users from the year before and a 28 percent rise in daily users. And Forbes reports a 500-fold increase in registered users for Twitter over the past five years. These users represent legions of potential business customers.

Large companies are on the social media band wagon, too. According to the Burson-Marsteller Global Social Media Check-Up 2012, the majority of the Fortune Global 100’s companies—87 percent—are using one or more of the major social media platforms to communicate with online stakeholders, with Twitter being most popular both for companies and users talking about the companies. Big corporations are also using Facebook, YouTube, Google Plus and Pinterest.

So, businesses increasingly gravitate to social media to pitch their products by interacting with audiences and sharing content that educates, entertains, and enlightens. But have you ever wondered who’s behind those accounts in this brave new world of social media marketing? The infographic below will look at the marketing wizards behind the curtain of this virtual world, possible pathways toward a career in social media marketing, and what the real-world outlook may be for these virtual marketers.

While the channels for promoting a company’s products may have changed—from a print-based environment to one that is becoming increasingly digital-based—the fundamentals of a marketing and public relations position have not.


"Facebook by the numbers," CNET, January 30, 2013, http://news.cnet.com/8301-1023_3-57566550-93/facebook-by-the-numbers-1.06-billion-monthly-active-users/

"Subway, Google And Target Are Top Brands For Social Currency," Forbes, March 12, 2013, http://www.forbes.com/sites/kurtbadenhausen/2013/03/12/subway-google-and-target-are-top-brands-for-social-currency/

Burston-Marsteller, Global Social Media Check-Up 2012, 2012, http://sites.burson-marsteller.com/social/PressRelease.aspx

Infographic: How to become a social media marketing specialist

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