Welcome to “episode three” of career advice with Joy Factory Films!

Hey, I’m Hope and I’m the Communications Manager around these parts. If you’re just tuning into our blog, we’ve been posting little bits of career advice and industry know-how over the past few weeks. Our team here at the Joy Factory is pretty diverse, from cinematographers and editors, to graphic design, to project management, and lastly, marketing. We all have different paths that led us here with many different stories to tell.

I’ve already interviewed the rest of our team (see our previous blog posts for more) and frankly, it would be weird for me interview myself – but I don’t have a lot of options, so here we go, haha!

How does the role of social media manager contribute to larger company goals?
I always say that marketing is everything and everything is marketing. My tourism professor said that in a class back during my undergraduate studies – it is so true! From the way a business interacts with it’s customers through highlighted touch-points, or through a direct targeted advertisement (online or offline), marketing needs to be at the forefront of a business’s mindset. For a social media manager, an every day can involve content creation and scheduling, strategic planning, creating/utilizing a brand’s voice, and working with a team of designers and agencies – or in some cases, being all of these in one. Social media is part of the larger sales and marketing funnel that allows a business’s potential audience to engage and interact with a product or service. Whether it is learning about a company’s values and why they truly love doing whatever it is they do, or experiencing the product first hand through other loyal customers, every post on Instagram, Facebook, and other feeds, is about building relationships. Of course, all of these touch-points and relationship building must be measured, tracked, and is critical when crushing goals – or there’s no point.

What programs/software does a social media manager use most often?
Honestly, the list is endless. Obviously, you’ll need a smartphone and a computer. Next up, follow the K.I.S.S. principle and keep the process simple. There are many scheduling tools out there, such as Hootsuite, Planoly, Later, Buffer, Sprout Social, Hey Orca, and so much more. Pick one that works best for you. Find an e-mail provider that you like best and get used to utilizing file sharing and online management systems such as We-Transfer, Google Drive, Dropbox, etc. In addition to all of this, I can’t operate functionally without a psychical calendar/planner in my workspace, along with lots of fun highlighter colours, and a nice journal to take notes.

What characteristics make people stand out in your workplace?
Working in a communications role, obviously communication skills are critical. Learn how to engage with introverts/extroverts/ambiverts, and feel comfortable having difficult conversations with your clients. More often than not, helping a client understand what he/she *really* needs comes up. Also, it is important to understand the inner workings of their businesses, and help them really sell their true story – not always an easy task. Be open, genuine, and passionate about what you’re doing. The rest will follow. OH. And practice your writing skills. There’s nothing worse than bad grammar when a business’s marketing dollars are at stake.

What are some of the typical entry-level job titles and functions in the digital marketing world?
Typically, entry-level job titles include words like content creator, digital marketing coordinator, and marketing coordinator. Every realm business is seeking new talent, whether you’re looking into travel companies, destination management organizations – such as Destination British Columbia- or larger corporations – like Spotify and Shopify. Positions like this usually involve a touch of social media management, in addition to other administrative tasks – though not always. As a content creator, your nine to five could look like managing/creating high quality photographs and videos, or even scheduling content that has already been created.

How does one get started in this line of work?
I’m a big fan of volunteering. By giving back to a non-profit organization or helping a struggling creative in your neighbourhood, you’ll gain the experience you need on running a business’s Instagram profile and create healthy, new relationships. I started out by planning and managing social media for the Tourism Management department at Thompson Rivers University when I was a student, and I learned so much which was easily transposed into my current career. The digital world is changing at a rapid momentum, so start reading up on this! Listen to free lectures, try an online course, stay up to date on trends with blogs and credible news. Research a brand that appeals to you and invite them out for coffee. Lastly, start beta-testing your own brand with your personal social media profiles. Show your future employers what you love to do, why you love to do it, and get yourself out there!

Alright, well, I hope this was helpful. Get it? Another Hope joke, of course. Don’t hesitate to ask some more questions in the comments below. I’m here for you!

Don’t forget to follow Joy Factory Films (@joyfactoryfilms) on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and all the rest of that good stuff.