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Q&A with a Social Media Manager

Find out what a day in the life of a Social Media Manager looks like with our current apprentice, Francesca Sedgwick...

Who would’ve thought that, at the age of 20, I would be a manager and spending my day growing in a career path that not only comes naturally to me, but that I LOVE? I find that people are more and more curious about my career choice, putting the words ‘social media’ and ‘manager’ into a job title doesn’t seem comprehensible to a lot of people.

Here is a nice selection of questions I am asked regularly by friends, co-workers, students and even my grandma – I hope you enjoy this little insight into my working world…

What does your usual working day consist of?

I work on various social channels: Twitter; Facebook; LinkedIn; and Instagram. I aim to ensure that we at Venturi are the leaders at what we do, and that we are delivering content that interests and attracts our target audience. A social schedule is a necessity – I create one every morning, making sure the content I intend to post throughout the day is on trend, relevant and entertaining.

Define what you think is social media?

Social media is communicating between two parties: us and our audience. It is a chance to engage on a more personal level with people than traditional marketing and advertising.

Do you believe social media will be an integral part of a company’s sales and customer service in future?

It already is. I really believe that social media is the key to connecting with the most hard-to-reach audiences, everything is so unbelievably accessible. Social media allows you to help customers and pick up their queries instantaneously. It is the definition of 24/7 engagement. Social media allows us to really utilise consumer relationships to build our brand which, of course, increases sales!

A big element of social media seems to be based around customer satisfaction, but should people accept they won’t always get their own way?

I love the buzz of social media and the urgency of it too. It takes seconds for someone to express an opinion on your cause, and it should take seconds for you to respond (appropriately). I’ve had one instance where quite a well-known newspaper editor Tweeted us (unhappily), it took me less than ten minutes to get her number, speak to her and resolve the issue. We then tweeted to and fro after the resolution and everything was sorted! The fact is, if you make your customers your main priority online and offline, then you should have nothing to worry about.

What advice would you give to other small/medium businesses aiming to grow through social media?

As long as you have a good message to put out then I say go for it. I’d make sure you keep personality on your channels and really utilise them to give people an insight into your company. Don’t be scared of trial and error, some things will work for one company and others won’t – that’s just the way of social media. If you don’t try, then you don’t know. The only thing to keep in mind is that the internet is not going to go away, and you have to be prepared to work and dedicate time to ensure you’re making the most of it for your business.

What is your favourite social media site?

Ooo, this is a real toughie. I’d have to say Instagram. Purely because I am a very visual person and sometimes find myself scrolling for hours on end through photos of holidays, clothes, celebs etc. I also think Instagram motivates me – I have a motivation board as my laptop wallpaper in work and all the photos are from various blogs I follow on Instagram.

How do you get creative, is there anything that motivates you?

Hmm, there are quite a few things to be honest. If I had to pick one, it’d probably be music. If I’m stressed, or things are catching up with me, then I just put my headphones in and get typing/thinking/mind mapping – eventually I get back into the swing of things.

Did you always know your career would be in Social Media?

I didn’t have a clue! I had always been the one out of my friends who never really knew what I wanted to do, however I was always on social media. It was right on my doorstep and I didn’t even realise until I came across The Juice Academy apprenticeship after applying for my job at Venturi. There is a lot of people who think my job is just to tweet all day and nothing else, but that’s far from the reality. Although Twitter is important and we use it a lot, it’s a tiny fragment of the social and marketing areas I cover during my day.

Why do you love your job so much and what is your favourite aspect?

I love my job because it is exciting, although I have only been doing my apprenticeship for a matter of months, the prospects and opportunities I have heard about are amazing. I look forward to seeing where I can go and how I can further develop my career within Venturi.

My favourite aspect of the job is the results. There are so many measurement platforms that tell me what is doing well and how the company is growing. I love being able to compare results from one month to the other or from one competitor to another. It really gives an insight into what our audience wants. Seeing positive results is super motivating.

Do you have any advice for someone not wanting to go to university and looking at apprenticeships?

Go for it. It was only two years ago that I was finishing college without a clue of what I was going to do next. I went to another college and did another course and it was only six months ago I really got the urge to thrive in something and start my career.

Apprenticeships are brilliant, there are so many to choose from – you really could do anything. Don’t think that you need a degree to be able to get a successful job.

What about advice for someone wanting to go into Social Media management?

Set up a blog, put yourself out there and do reviews, weekly features, promote yourself and blog out to brands! If you feel like this would be too time consuming then set up a Tumblr account or a Flickr channel, post things you love and can write about. If you are applying for a job in social media, the first thing they will do is look at your accounts – can you imagine going on someone’s and they haven’t posted in years?! Make it exciting and really let people know what you’re about.

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