10 Underappreciated Skills for Social Media Professionals

Whether it’s copywriting, providing customer service, or shooting compelling video, social media managers have the skills needed to keep their audience engaged—and their business on top. Now social media managers need to know it too. When your business ends up having a day with no new content scheduled to publish on social networks, being able to write your own blog post is a solid asset. With a tool like Salesforce, social media professionals can tag all the links they share on Twitter, Facebook, or any other social network. Learn how to get real-time analytics from your social media networks with this video about Hootsuite Analytics. Photography These days, you don’t need to be a professional photographer to share nice photos on social media. Photoshop Having the skills to edit and improve photos will help them stand out and increase shareability on social media. Design To complement photography and Photoshop skills, social media managers need basic design proficiency. Boost your memorability with not just any image, but one that is backed by thoughtful design. There are many free and inexpensive social video apps and tools that businesses can use to create video content for their social media channels.

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A social media manager is the ultimate jack-of-all-trades. Whether it’s copywriting, providing customer service, or shooting compelling video, social media managers have the skills needed to keep their audience engaged—and their business on top.

I’ve built a list of the top skills social media managers need to master and where to go to hone these talents. By the end of this post, you’ll know:

  • Why video skills are essential (and where to find a toolkit of resources to help you build this skill)
  • A few simple tips for improving your design skills
  • How to improve your ROI tracking and analytics skills with some resources

1. SEO

Search engine optimization, or SEO, is an essential skill for many web professionals. Bloggers, web developers, copywriters, and even designers need to take into account how their work will rank in search. Now social media managers need to know it too.

While Twitter had previously blocked Google from indexing tweets from the site, the stance has since softened. Most recently, Google announced they would once again crawl and index tweet data. For more information, see Stone Temple’s guide to Google’s indexing practices.

Google finds content faster if it gets a lot of traction on Twitter. This is important for SEO because the faster you can get your content indexed, the faster you’ll get rewarded through organic traffic to your site.

Social influence can also help boost your rankings. Google will rank your blog posts and website higher if it sees that you are a credible source, and social media influence (relevance, reach, and resonance) is a factor in determining it.

The faster you get your content indexed, the faster you’ll get rewarded with organic traffic to your brand’s website.

2. Customer service

When I have a complaint, the first place I go is to social media. I’m not alone, either. According to a study by J.D. Power, 67 percent of consumers use social media for service requests. Whether this means sending a question over Facebook Messenger or tweeting a complaint, social media is an invaluable resource for customer service.

As a social media manager, your customer service skills may include knowing:

  • How to navigate difficult conversations with customers online
  • When to take conversations offline
  • How to be proactive with your social customer service
  • How to be a brand expert and align with tone of voice
  • How to respond in a timely manner (and manage expectations)
  • How to find and monitor conversations around your brand (via social listening)
  • How to use data to inform future decisions

To boost your own skills, see our post A Beginner’s Guide to Social Media Customer Support.

3. Writing

Most social networks inherently involve writing. Even visual networks like Pinterest, Instagram, and YouTube require you to write titles and captions. A well-written caption can make a massive difference in the success of your photo. The same can be said of your video title and description.

Learn how to use active verbs to your advantage. With the right words, you can tap into emotion and boost the shareability of your content. For more on perfecting attention-grabbing writing, check out our post How to Write the Best Instagram Captions: Ideas, Tips, and Strategy.

Basic training in writing can also open up other doors for social media professionals. LinkedIn is focused on promoting publishers, blog hybrids like Medium offer new reach, and a well-crafted answer on Quora can gain millions of free views. It’s clear: knowing how to write can extend your reach.

Honing your writing abilities also gives you an advantage when it comes to content sharing. When your business ends up having a day with no new content scheduled to publish on social networks, being able to write your own blog post is a solid asset.

4. Analytics and revenue tracking

Tying social media activities to actual…

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