My Social Media Job Description

For one of my projects this week, I had to create a social media job description.  I did a quick search on Google and on various job boards, but I didn’t like any of the descriptions that I saw.

So, I wrote my own “perfect” job description which could be viewed almost as a checklist.  I think the responsibilities should be stated in fairly broad terms without getting into specific tools or techniques.  I also  don’t like job descriptions that specify a number of years of experience.  Instead, a social media expert should be able to point to his body of work – through his blog, his Twitter feed, his LinkedIn profile or Facebook page – and that should be sufficient proof.  Finally, a list of key attributes is essential to get an understanding of the candidate’s personality.

Besides me, does this description fit anyone you know in social media?

Let me know what you think or add your suggestions in my comments.


Social Media Job Description

The most important part of this job is that the candidate must have demonstrated and extensive social media experience.  This means that the person is actively participating in a wide variety of social media activities such as blogging, community development and management, social bookmarking, commenting, etc. and is well-connected with the broader social media world.  The second important part is that the candidate must be able to think strategically, but be willing and able to roll up his sleeves to help implement the programs.

Responsibilities – the key responsibilities for this position include:

  • Create a comprehensive social media strategy to define programs that use social media marketing techniques to increase visibility, membership and traffic across all XYZ brands and Implement and manage social media programs
  • Experiment with new and alternative ways to leverage social media activities (“marketing R&D”)
  • Monitor trends in social media tools, trends and applications and appropriately apply that knowledge to increasing the use of social media at XYZ
  • Strategize with and educate the management team and others across the company on incorporating relevant social media techniques into the corporate culture and into all of the company’s products and services
  • Measure the impact of social media on the overall marketing efforts

Experience – the ideal candidate will have experience in the following areas:

  • Social media tools and techniques
  • Marketing (traditional, new media, guerilla and ‘word of mouth’)
  • Strategy
  • Product marketing
  • Press and analyst relations
  • Business development
  • Technology
  • Operations
  • Sales
  • Financial and quantitative analysis
  • Project management

Attributes – the key attributes for this position include:

  • Creativity
  • Willingness to experiment
  • Ability to deal with uncertainty
  • Ability to contribute individually, and lead, manage or participate in cross-functional teams
  • Doggedness and determination
  • Ability to synthesize large amounts of data into actionable information
  • Excellent writing skills and a willingness to use them
  • Excellent verbal communication skills
  • Persuasiveness
  • Ability to create great working relationships with all levels within the company and across multiple disciplines
  • Sense of humor

33 thoughts on “My Social Media Job Description

  1. Um, could I apply please?

    Great stuff. Going to bookmark the page for reference when I’m talking to clients who don’t know what their social media liaison should be doing or the traits they should have.


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  3. Thanks for posting. I was looking for a good job description to use in an offer letter and wasn’t finding anything good.

    I might add one point though — drinks beer, or at least wine. ;>)

  4. Thanks Tom for helping me better understand Social Media Positions. I am just discovering the incredible potential and depth of the Social Media world. Up until now I’ve just been using SM to stay in touch with friends around the world however I see that there’s a heck of a lot more than that. I have an interview for a SMO position this week and am totally a newbie so I’m taking the next few days to figure things out. Any tips for someone with no prior experience? Should I be intimidated? I feel that I’m a quick learner, computer savy, and creative… 🙂 Appreciate the info!

    • Hey Elana,

      I am also absolutely fascinated by this area and its development. armed with just a generic marketing degree, i went for an interview last week with an online marketing company, competing with a bunch of IT background graduates! it turns out my passion for all things online weren’t enough.

      Unfortunately, the interviewer said i had to own some IT skills to develop website or content management. WordPress wasnt good enough and knowing just a little about platforms such as Joomla!, SliverStripe, Magento, etc wasn’t enough.

      It couldnt have been more demoralising!!! 😦 i actually started thinking about applying for general product marketing jobs. thing’s i thought i was going to be be consulted and advising clients on what kinda online marketing strategy they could apply (of course having some online knowledge, otherwise i wouldnt be able to advise) but the interviewer said the kinda post sales service ill be giving doesnt just include the above but also creating the kinda web page the client would like.

      Is that what online marketing positions are today? sounds pretty heavy and tough to cope.

      Anyway good luck Elana!!

      • Jocelyn-Luckily, some of the IT skills you mentioned can be learned. I feel so lucky that I’m in an organization where strong writing and interpersonal skills (skills I infer you possess!) are highly valued. It’s tough to say this in such a tight economy, but you will thrive where those skills are valued. Good luck!

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  9. Great post! Some social media marketing positions are new enough that it helps to have a ready list of services that you can provide clients.

    The list is also helpful as a personal checklist for areas to focus on when trying to expand your knowledge base.

  10. Loved you’re article.

    Just read Inbound marketing book and searched to try and find ways of how to hire a social media person

    We have lots of content and need someone to help execute. I’m looking for a consultant plus a full time person to execute

    I’m the MD at ISACO and I need help putting together a simple social media plan for our business.

    I want to find and hire someone with the above details in job description.

    If you think you can help email and we maybe able to do some business

    In the UK, its harder to find people with the qualities above.

    Your friend


    • Paul,
      we specialize in marketing, brand management and social media as a channel to cost effectively do marketing for small and large enterprises.

      We are based out of India so let us know how what your needs and we can let you know how we can help you. If we cant then we will ensure we recommend someone else who can..

    • Of course I would find of the most active thought leaders when it comes to Community Building and Management here. Tom has indeed done his homework and look at the results, well done!

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  12. Great work! I would add a couple of things:
    1) Must possess a strong understanding of website usability and navigation best practices, HTML, CSS, and a variety of content management systems.
    2) Demonstrated knowledge of ethical search engine optimization techniques.
    I think that the best social media marketers need to have a solid understanding of the web, in general, before they can really know how to apply social media to an overall marketing mix.

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  15. Hi Tom,

    Great post – shows what a social media consultant really needs to know. I needed some additional research for a client and this post gave me everything I wanted!

    Keep it up!

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  18. Great post – You really got to the heart of the matter. I’m amazed at how similar this is to the description I wrote for myself when I had to describe my job for a non-profit organization I am affiliated with. I am a Conservation-Ecologist (MS) by trade but with a PR/journalism degree for my undergraduate studies. While working for the state as a public affairs officer in their Nongame Conservation program I realized how far behind the conservation world was in terms of social media and went to work bringing it up to speed. I created a social media policy and plan of action for the organization and then shared it with the USFWS. Not long after I went out on my own. Now seven years after writing my first blog post I spend most of my time trying to help others, mainly via teaching but I also serve as a consultant, mainly to wildlife and conservation-oriented organizations that need a little social media help. I think the main difference I see is that mine was obviously more specific, with an emphasis on staying on top of trends using sites like Klout, GetGlue or Twitter, being a Pro at Analytics (Google, Klout) and the importance of continued training seeing as Social Media is dynamic and constantly in flux. I will definitely share this with my local chapter (Social Media Professionals Atlanta).

  19. What a great post, Tom. There always seems to be a lot of confusion in regards to what a person actually does with a job description of Social Media. From personal experience, people often think you sit on Facebook all day posting pictures and ‘liking’ statuses. As social media becomes more and more complex, the employee needs to have a more in depth understanding of all the social media tools and techniques out there. I agree with the part when you said, “I also don’t like job descriptions that specify a number of years of experience.” With social media being a relatively new outlet for communication, a lot of candidates won’t have 10-15 years under their belts. Thanks again for the creative post!

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