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How To Become A Social Media Manager



How To Become A Social Media Manager

Social media has transformed the business world and opened up new career paths in the social media field.

There are more opportunities than ever to explore fresh and exciting careers, and understanding what is required to pursue your desired career is essential.

Social media manager is a popular job title, but what does it entail, and how do you get that role?

Keep reading to learn what a social media manager does and what skills you need if you want to pursue this social media career path.

How Do I Become A Social Media Manager?

Becoming a social media manager requires many diverse skills and abilities, and you need to ace plenty of things to help you with this.


Make sure you understand some of the necessary steps to help you become a social media manager.

Here are some of the key elements that are involved in becoming a social media manager:

  • Define your services.
  • Build your manager skills.
  • Establish an online presence.
  • Build up a portfolio of clients.
  • Look at what positions are available.
  • Expand your knowledge and skill set.
  • Learn about the best social media marketing tools.
  • Get better qualified (postgrad, degree, course, etc.).
  • Gain experience via entry-level roles before moving up.

There’s no single path to launching a career as a social media manager.

But focusing on certain steps like building your portfolio and pursuing a degree or certification in this field can give you a major advantage.

What Does A Social Media Manager Do?

Understanding the role of a social media manager is also imperative for helping you find the right opportunities and being able to thrive in your career.

Typically, a social media manager is responsible for strategizing campaigns and content to increase followers, connect with people across different social platforms, and improve their brand’s social media presence.

According to Socially Buzz, 28% of internet users found new products due to social media ads, which illustrates a social media manager’s important role in helping get the best out of marketing campaigns.


Of course, the responsibilities tend to differ depending on a multitude of factors, such as the size of the company.

Producing compelling content and analyzing data are crucial for developing success as a social media manager.

Check out some of the key responsibilities you can be expected to fulfill as a social media manager:

  • Social engagement: Increasing followers and driving engagement better is important for developing a strong social media presence, and you can do this through written and visual content. With 137 million new internet users in the past 12 months, this is a large pool of users to target when looking to improve engagement.
  • Data analysis: One of the most important roles a social media manager has to fulfill is that of data analysis, which involves assimilating all pertinent data and using it to assess how the company’s social accounts are performing.
  • Posting and monitoring social platforms: It might be necessary to schedule posts across all different social media platforms, as well as observe the performance of these posts and interact with followers and customers.
  • Campaign strategy: Developing a strong strategy for a successful social media content campaign is one of the best things you can do to excel in your role as a social media manager. This makes a huge difference in driving engagement and helps you effectively align your brand marketing strategies and values.

What Is A Typical Social Media Manager Job Description?

Social media manager is a job description that is multi-faceted, and it will allow you to gain a greater understanding of what this role entails.

Mostly, you will find that this is a role where applicants are responsible for overseeing businesses’ interactions with consumers via social media, as well as managing and overseeing their social media platforms and implementing content strategies.

The following are the usual social media manager job requirements:

  • Manage a social budget.
  • Interact with customers.
  • Take ownership of the social strategy.
  • Promote posts and craft new content.
  • Develop new social media campaigns.
  • Research trends and stay ahead of the curve.
  • Monitor and analyze social media campaign data and performance.
  • Streamline social media channels to ensure the tone of voice is consistent.

How Much Is A Social Media Manager Paid?

When choosing any career path, knowing what you can expect to earn is important.

It is important to have an idea of what you want to earn, as well as knowing what the average is, to give you room for negotiation.


According to Zippia, who claims the tagline “The career expert,” the average social manager salary is $70,287 per year. On the low end, you might expect $50,000 at the entry level and upwards of $98,000 if you have a few years under your belt.

Washington tops the list in terms of the highest-paying state overall, while San Francisco, California, claims the top spot for the highest-paying city.

Via the above link, if you select your location, specific industry, and education level, you can get a more tailored estimate of what you are worth.

What Skills Does A Social Media Manager Need To Have?

So, what makes a good social media manager?

Well, there are several different attributes to consider, and this will play a massive role in helping you secure this kind of career path in a more positive way.

Understanding the skills and abilities needed to help you excel in your role as a social media manager is crucial when seeking a career path in this area.


So, what is required to be a skilled and successful social media manager? Here are some key social media manager skills you’ll need to excel in this career.

1. They Must Have Solid Communication Skills

It may seem obvious that someone whose primary job is to connect with people from outside the company needs to have good communication skills. In fact, it’s arguably the No. 1 skill social media managers need to be successful.

Communication skills in this realm are slightly different than they are in traditional communication roles.

Social media managers need to be able to understand the audience they are communicating with and speak in a way that will resonate with that audience.

While all social media platforms are similar in what they accomplish, each channel has a slightly different way of communicating. Recognizing and understanding how a person communicates on Facebook is different from how a person communicates on Twitter is essential.

2. They Must Be Social

The best social media managers are people who thoroughly enjoy social media and participate in social media on a personal level.


To be a truly successful communicator on social media, one has to know not only the ins and the outs of the programs but also be able to use the vernacular common to each.

It sticks out like a sore thumb when an “outsider” posts on a social media channel, which can negatively affect the business’s reputation.

That’s why a social media manager who is well-versed in everything each channel entails is key and why the best social media managers are those who, first and foremost, participated in social media on a personal level before taking it on as their profession.

3. They Must Have Personality & Creativity

One of the biggest differences between social media usage for work and personal life is the formality of the content. This isn’t to say that social media messaging for businesses should be stuffy.

It’s quite the opposite, actually.

Social media channels are a way for businesses to communicate with customers on a more personal level.


So, a sense of humor, a touch of creativity, and a voice that resonates with the audience are all must-haves.

A business’s social media channels shouldn’t appear as ads or include typical PR jargon.

4. They Must Be Up On Digital Data

The top three skills on this list all deal with the makeup of the person who holds the title of social media manager. The rest are all professionally-based skills.

A social media manager needs to take the content a step further by optimizing and analyzing it.

This means being able to discern whether the social media marketing is working by culling the appropriate data for each channel and then adjusting the content, if necessary.

This aspect of the job requires knowledge of search engine optimization (SEO) general practices and, specifically, how search engines treat social media posts.


5. They Must Be Project Managers

Managing social media channels for a business isn’t all fun and games. It’s a serious job that takes serious management skills.

Some social media managers will be one-man or one-woman teams. If this is the case, the person will need to approach each channel as a separate project with short-, medium- and long-term goals, along with that of the overall social media plan.

Some social media managers have a team of people helping them manage each of the channels. In these cases, the manager must have solid skills in managing people and projects.

6. They Must Write & Edit Well

As a social media manager, you will need to be able to write creatively.

Crafting social media copy can be very challenging, and it takes a creative and talented head to be able to do it well.

Writing and editing as the “voice” of a company can be hugely fulfilling, and this is an essential part of being a social media manager.


Yes, the social media manager will need to be able to inject some flair into the writing, but it must be done in a professional way.

This goes for the content the manager will write and the content that he or she will edit that others on the team have written.

7. They Must Have Visual Skills

Social media is a very visually-driven form of communication.

Even posts on text-based channels such as Twitter perform better if they have pictures that go along with the text. That’s why successful social media managers must understand how to pair visuals with text.

This means a good social media manager will be able to cull available images from the internet or a company’s database and also must be able to create great imagery on his or her own – or at least, be able to tell a design department in the company what to create.

8. They Must Be Flexible & Adaptable

A social media manager’s job requires a lot of patience and flexibility. Not only are a company’s needs changing all the time, but social media itself is, too. This is where the flexibility comes in.


A good social media manager will need to be able to digest changes made to each social media channel, as well as how to shift the approach to that channel.

In addition, social media managers need to be able to adapt to each environment they are communicating in, as sometimes the change occurs with the users of a social media channel and not just the channel itself.

This means being up on all the trends on not just how people are using Twitter, for example, but what they are talking about on Twitter – whether that relates to the manager’s company or not.

9. They Must Be Great Marketers

Ultimately, the purpose of a social media channel is to create marketing opportunities. The fun part of social media is communicating, taking photos, creating eye-pleasing posts, and interacting with people.

But the end goal is to market the business.

The social media manager doesn’t need to have a strong direct sales background, but he or she needs to understand that the content the social team produces is ideally supposed to generate sales – if even in an indirect way.


It’s also important for the social media manager to recognize a sales lead that may come across in a reply to a message and pass it along to the sales team.

10. They Must Have Excellent Customer Service Skills

One aspect of social media that can’t be overlooked is the fact that it’s a two-way communication street. It’s simple for people to reply to your content or share it with all of their followers.

Successful social media managers will understand this customer service aspect of the job and will be able to effectively monitor the activity on each social media channel and respectfully reply to all inquiries in a timely manner – whether the reply is positive or negative.

People can say whatever they want on social media – and they often do – so approaching these people politely and respectfully takes some patience and discipline.

Where Can I Find A Job As A Social Media Manager?

You should consider plenty of options when looking to become a social media manager, and you have several options when trying to get a job in this role.

Finding online openings and opportunities via job boards is always a good option, and you also need to make sure you contact companies directly to see if there are any openings.


Networking is one of the best things you can do to keep yourself connected to job opportunities, which can prove incredibly useful.

Social media sites are a great way of being able to network with potential clients, and this is an excellent way of finding a job as a social media manager.

Bottom Line On Becoming A Social Media Manager

The best social media managers will be able to draw on a combination of the above 10 skills, as it’s truly a position that requires a diverse set of skills across various traditional disciplines.

As social media platforms keep growing and their algorithms change, the fact remains that any company online, from ecommerce to small businesses and agencies alike, will need you.

You’ll have a lot of opportunities to upskill and pave your own path as a social media manager in whatever industry you desire.

Keep reading about emerging social media channels and trends regularly to keep yourself informed. Also, learn and practice effective social media strategies. Combine them with the skills listed here, and you’ll land that dream job in no time.


More Resources: 

Featured Image: GaudiLab/Shutterstock

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Google On Hyphens In Domain Names




What Google says about using hyphens in domain names

Google’s John Mueller answered a question on Reddit about why people don’t use hyphens with domains and if there was something to be concerned about that they were missing.

Domain Names With Hyphens For SEO

I’ve been working online for 25 years and I remember when using hyphens in domains was something that affiliates did for SEO when Google was still influenced by keywords in the domain, URL, and basically keywords anywhere on the webpage. It wasn’t something that everyone did, it was mainly something that was popular with some affiliate marketers.

Another reason for choosing domain names with keywords in them was that site visitors tended to convert at a higher rate because the keywords essentially prequalified the site visitor. I know from experience how useful two-keyword domains (and one word domain names) are for conversions, as long as they didn’t have hyphens in them.

A consideration that caused hyphenated domain names to fall out of favor is that they have an untrustworthy appearance and that can work against conversion rates because trustworthiness is an important factor for conversions.

Lastly, hyphenated domain names look tacky. Why go with tacky when a brandable domain is easier for building trust and conversions?


Domain Name Question Asked On Reddit

This is the question asked on Reddit:

“Why don’t people use a lot of domains with hyphens? Is there something concerning about it? I understand when you tell it out loud people make miss hyphen in search.”

And this is Mueller’s response:

“It used to be that domain names with a lot of hyphens were considered (by users? or by SEOs assuming users would? it’s been a while) to be less serious – since they could imply that you weren’t able to get the domain name with fewer hyphens. Nowadays there are a lot of top-level-domains so it’s less of a thing.

My main recommendation is to pick something for the long run (assuming that’s what you’re aiming for), and not to be overly keyword focused (because life is too short to box yourself into a corner – make good things, course-correct over time, don’t let a domain-name limit what you do online). The web is full of awkward, keyword-focused short-lived low-effort takes made for SEO — make something truly awesome that people will ask for by name. If that takes a hyphen in the name – go for it.”

Pick A Domain Name That Can Grow

Mueller is right about picking a domain name that won’t lock your site into one topic. When a site grows in popularity the natural growth path is to expand the range of topics the site coves. But that’s hard to do when the domain is locked into one rigid keyword phrase. That’s one of the downsides of picking a “Best + keyword + reviews” domain, too. Those domains can’t grow bigger and look tacky, too.

That’s why I’ve always recommended brandable domains that are memorable and encourage trust in some way.


Read the post on Reddit:

Are domains with hyphens bad?

Read Mueller’s response here.

Featured Image by Shutterstock/Benny Marty

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Reddit Post Ranks On Google In 5 Minutes




Google apparently ranks Reddit posts within minutes

Google’s Danny Sullivan disputed the assertions made in a Reddit discussion that Google is showing a preference for Reddit in the search results. But a Redditor’s example proves that it’s possible for a Reddit post to rank in the top ten of the search results within minutes and to actually improve rankings to position #2 a week later.

Discussion About Google Showing Preference To Reddit

A Redditor (gronetwork) complained that Google is sending so many visitors to Reddit that the server is struggling with the load and shared an example that proved that it can only take minutes for a Reddit post to rank in the top ten.

That post was part of a 79 post Reddit thread where many in the r/SEO subreddit were complaining about Google allegedly giving too much preference to Reddit over legit sites.

The person who did the test (gronetwork) wrote:

“…The website is already cracking (server down, double posts, comments not showing) because there are too many visitors.

…It only takes few minutes (you can test it) for a post on Reddit to appear in the top ten results of Google with keywords related to the post’s title… (while I have to wait months for an article on my site to be referenced). Do the math, the whole world is going to spam here. The loop is completed.”


Reddit Post Ranked Within Minutes

Another Redditor asked if they had tested if it takes “a few minutes” to rank in the top ten and gronetwork answered that they had tested it with a post titled, Google SGE Review.

gronetwork posted:

“Yes, I have created for example a post named “Google SGE Review” previously. After less than 5 minutes it was ranked 8th for Google SGE Review (no quotes). Just after, 6 authoritative SEO websites and’s overview page for SGE (Search Generative Experience). It is ranked third for SGE Review.”

It’s true, not only does that specific post (Google SGE Review) rank in the top 10, the post started out in position 8 and it actually improved ranking, currently listed beneath the number one result for the search query “SGE Review”.

Screenshot Of Reddit Post That Ranked Within Minutes

Anecdotes Versus Anecdotes

Okay, the above is just one anecdote. But it’s a heck of an anecdote because it proves that it’s possible for a Reddit post to rank within minutes and get stuck in the top of the search results over other possibly more authoritative websites.

hankschrader79 shared that Reddit posts outrank Toyota Tacoma forums for a phrase related to mods for that truck.


Google’s Danny Sullivan responded to that post and the entire discussion to dispute that Reddit is not always prioritized over other forums.

Danny wrote:

“Reddit is not always prioritized over other forums. [super vhs to mac adapter] I did this week, it goes Apple Support Community, MacRumors Forum and further down, there’s Reddit. I also did [kumo cloud not working setup 5ghz] recently (it’s a nightmare) and it was the Netgear community, the SmartThings Community, GreenBuildingAdvisor before Reddit. Related to that was [disable 5g airport] which has Apple Support Community above Reddit. [how to open an 8 track tape] — really, it was the YouTube videos that helped me most, but it’s the Tapeheads community that comes before Reddit.

In your example for [toyota tacoma], I don’t even get Reddit in the top results. I get Toyota, Car & Driver, Wikipedia, Toyota again, three YouTube videos from different creators (not Toyota), Edmunds, a Top Stories unit. No Reddit, which doesn’t really support the notion of always wanting to drive traffic just to Reddit.

If I guess at the more specific query you might have done, maybe [overland mods for toyota tacoma], I get a YouTube video first, then Reddit, then Tacoma World at third — not near the bottom. So yes, Reddit is higher for that query — but it’s not first. It’s also not always first. And sometimes, it’s not even showing at all.”

hankschrader79 conceded that they were generalizing when they wrote that Google always prioritized Reddit. But they also insisted that that didn’t diminish what they said is a fact that Google’s “prioritization” forum content has benefitted Reddit more than actual forums.

Why Is The Reddit Post Ranked So High?

It’s possible that Google “tested” that Reddit post in position 8 within minutes and that user interaction signals indicated to Google’s algorithms that users prefer to see that Reddit post. If that’s the case then it’s not a matter of Google showing preference to Reddit post but rather it’s users that are showing the preference and the algorithm is responding to those preferences.


Nevertheless, an argument can be made that user preferences for Reddit can be a manifestation of Familiarity Bias. Familiarity Bias is when people show a preference for things that are familiar to them. If a person is familiar with a brand because of all the advertising they were exposed to then they may show a bias for the brand products over unfamiliar brands.

Users who are familiar with Reddit may choose Reddit because they don’t know the other sites in the search results or because they have a bias that Google ranks spammy and optimized websites and feel safer reading Reddit.

Google may be picking up on those user interaction signals that indicate a preference and satisfaction with the Reddit results but those results may simply be biases and not an indication that Reddit is trustworthy and authoritative.

Is Reddit Benefiting From A Self-Reinforcing Feedback Loop?

It may very well be that Google’s decision to prioritize user generated content may have started a self-reinforcing pattern that draws users in to Reddit through the search results and because the answers seem plausible those users start to prefer Reddit results. When they’re exposed to more Reddit posts their familiarity bias kicks in and they start to show a preference for Reddit. So what could be happening is that the users and Google’s algorithm are creating a self-reinforcing feedback loop.

Is it possible that Google’s decision to show more user generated content has kicked off a cycle where more users are exposed to Reddit which then feeds back into Google’s algorithm which in turn increases Reddit visibility, regardless of lack of expertise and authoritativeness?

Featured Image by Shutterstock/Kues


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WordPress Releases A Performance Plugin For “Near-Instant Load Times”




WordPress speculative loading plugin

WordPress released an official plugin that adds support for a cutting edge technology called speculative loading that can help boost site performance and improve the user experience for site visitors.

Speculative Loading

Rendering means constructing the entire webpage so that it instantly displays (rendering). When your browser downloads the HTML, images, and other resources and puts it together into a webpage, that’s rendering. Prerendering is putting that webpage together (rendering it) in the background.

What this plugin does is to enable the browser to prerender the entire webpage that a user might navigate to next. The plugin does that by anticipating which webpage the user might navigate to based on where they are hovering.

Chrome lists a preference for only prerendering when there is an at least 80% probability of a user navigating to another webpage. The official Chrome support page for prerendering explains:

“Pages should only be prerendered when there is a high probability the page will be loaded by the user. This is why the Chrome address bar prerendering options only happen when there is such a high probability (greater than 80% of the time).

There is also a caveat in that same developer page that prerendering may not happen based on user settings, memory usage and other scenarios (more details below about how analytics handles prerendering).


The Speculative Loading API solves a problem that previous solutions could not because in the past they were simply prefetching resources like JavaScript and CSS but not actually prerendering the entire webpage.

The official WordPress announcement explains it like this:

Introducing the Speculation Rules API
The Speculation Rules API is a new web API that solves the above problems. It allows defining rules to dynamically prefetch and/or prerender URLs of certain structure based on user interaction, in JSON syntax—or in other words, speculatively preload those URLs before the navigation. This API can be used, for example, to prerender any links on a page whenever the user hovers over them.”

The official WordPress page about this new functionality describes it:

“The Speculation Rules API is a new web API… It allows defining rules to dynamically prefetch and/or prerender URLs of certain structure based on user interaction, in JSON syntax—or in other words, speculatively preload those URLs before the navigation.

This API can be used, for example, to prerender any links on a page whenever the user hovers over them. Also, with the Speculation Rules API, “prerender” actually means to prerender the entire page, including running JavaScript. This can lead to near-instant load times once the user clicks on the link as the page would have most likely already been loaded in its entirety. However that is only one of the possible configurations.”

The new WordPress plugin adds support for the Speculation Rules API. The Mozilla developer pages, a great resource for HTML technical understanding describes it like this:

“The Speculation Rules API is designed to improve performance for future navigations. It targets document URLs rather than specific resource files, and so makes sense for multi-page applications (MPAs) rather than single-page applications (SPAs).

The Speculation Rules API provides an alternative to the widely-available <link rel=”prefetch”> feature and is designed to supersede the Chrome-only deprecated <link rel=”prerender”> feature. It provides many improvements over these technologies, along with a more expressive, configurable syntax for specifying which documents should be prefetched or prerendered.”


See also: Are Websites Getting Faster? New Data Reveals Mixed Results

Performance Lab Plugin

The new plugin was developed by the official WordPress performance team which occasionally rolls out new plugins for users to test ahead of possible inclusion into the actual WordPress core. So it’s a good opportunity to be first to try out new performance technologies.

The new WordPress plugin is by default set to prerender “WordPress frontend URLs” which are pages, posts, and archive pages. How it works can be fine-tuned under the settings:

Settings > Reading > Speculative Loading

Browser Compatibility

The Speculative API is supported by Chrome 108 however the specific rules used by the new plugin require Chrome 121 or higher. Chrome 121 was released in early 2024.

Browsers that do not support will simply ignore the plugin and will have no effect on the user experience.

Check out the new Speculative Loading WordPress plugin developed by the official core WordPress performance team.


How Analytics Handles Prerendering

A WordPress developer commented with a question asking how Analytics would handle prerendering and someone else answered that it’s up to the Analytics provider to detect a prerender and not count it as a page load or site visit.

Fortunately both Google Analytics and Google Publisher Tags (GPT) both are able to handle prerenders. The Chrome developers support page has a note about how analytics handles prerendering:

“Google Analytics handles prerender by delaying until activation by default as of September 2023, and Google Publisher Tag (GPT) made a similar change to delay triggering advertisements until activation as of November 2023.”

Possible Conflict With Ad Blocker Extensions

There are a couple things to be aware of about this plugin, aside from the fact that it’s an experimental feature that requires Chrome 121 or higher.

A comment by a WordPress plugin developer that this feature may not work with browsers that are using the uBlock Origin ad blocking browser extension.

Download the plugin:
Speculative Loading Plugin by the WordPress Performance Team

Read the announcement at WordPress
Speculative Loading in WordPress


See also: WordPress, Wix & Squarespace Show Best CWV Rate Of Improvement

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