The marketing landscape is getting increasingly complex for marketing and advertising professionals, who now have to operate in a multi-dimensional, multi-functional and multi-channel ecosystem. This calls for multiple skill sets and quick adaptation to a changing scenario.
While the digital marketing field attracts young minds, given the fact that most are quite active in the social media space, not many are equipped with the right skill sets to meet the challenges in this field.
exchange4media seeks to find out from a few social media experts where the available talent falls short and what it takes to have a sustainable career in social media marketing.
Cut down on casual enthusiasm
It is observed that the ‘glamour quotient’ draws several hopefuls to social media marketing jobs. According to Sanjay Mehta, Joint Chief Executive Officer, Social Wavelength, there is a general enthusiasm about the space, but often the understanding is limited and the approach at times is causal in nature.
“Just because all of us are on Facebook or Twitter, and a job in this space is about managing such platforms, there is a sense of excitement, and sometimes also complacency, that it should be easy, but the fact is that you are working not on your own Facebook profile or Twitter handle, but for a brand. There is need to understand what it takes to get it right, how responsible you need to be, how your language needs to be correct and clean, etc.,” he added.
Mehta stressed that it is important to get on board talent that understands data and analytics, which will thereby drive the overall digital efforts. It is necessary for social media marketing professionals to channelise their knowledge in the right direction and not assume that the medium is easy to approach.
Stop working in silos
Experts feel that today each vertical of advertising still works in silos. Until, creative minds break through and look at things from a different lens, digital work will not create an integrated effect. They also feel that social media agencies do not initiate ‘creative brainstorming’ sessions with the brand’s other agency partners.
On the other hand, Rohan Bhansali, Chief Executive Officer, Gozoop is of the opinion that the current bunch of talent in digital marketing has high potential. He further observed, “They are extremely well read and totally aware of everything that’s happening online, but the only gap that most of them could look to improve is thinking not just from a digital point of view, but keeping in mind a 360-degree perspective while looking to deliver results.”
Today, social media marketing professionals are focused on creating ideas that are probably trend, share or like worthy. Looking the bigger picture is what these young professionals should start working towards. It is also important for brands to encourage their agency partners to meet during the briefing sessions to get a better perspective on the way ahead.
Building upon the ‘portfolio’ culture
Today, CEOs of social media marketing companies look beyond the well-composed and ‘hire’ worthy portfolios of professionals.
Mehta believes that young professionals looking for a career in the social media marketing space need to work towards specifics of their area of interest and taking up interesting internships to create the right impression.
Bhansali added noted, “What drives an individual towards creativity is extremely essential. If the drive is passion or aspiration to make it big, we know we have the right candidate. There’s a set of people that see exactly what all of us see, but perceive it in a different sphere altogether.”
Aiming to earn a quick buck? Then take a U-turn
It is a general misconception that the online communication space offers very high salaries across various profiles. Experts caution that those looking for a quick buck will be disappointed.
Bhansali has a piece of advice for professionals who want to get into this space. He said, “If you’re looking to plunge into digital marketing just because that’s apparently an upcoming industry, please give it a second thought. Just because your peers are jumping into the pool, doesn’t mean you have to join them. Take a step into the digital world only if you’re truly passionate about it and that’s what you love doing.”