As we all know, social media has become an integral part of public relations, and our lives in general. Whether for personal or business reasons, almost everyone is on Twitter, Facebook, Foursquare and other combinations of social media Web sites.
But it seems as though the seriousness of social media is being taken to a new level. Businesses and corporations have begun adding a new position to their business structure: Social media director. CNNmoney.com recently published an article about the importance of social media and the trend of turning it into a job. Social media is viewed as a form of public relations for businesses and when it emerged, we saw many public relations practitioners taking on the role of social media director for their respective businesses. That’s beginning to change. The influential role of social media as a marketing tool has increased greatly in the past few years and businesses are starting to believe that it’s a job in its own right. We have seen, and will continue to see increased job opening for Social Media Directors in corporations and other businesses.
So the question is, is social media really a hard enough job or hefty enough load for a company to create an entire position with a salary and benefits? Obviously at this juncture that is becoming the common consensus, but it could well change. For companies now, social media may be a new tool but soon it will be worked to a science, where each company has their own finely executed plan for how they go about it. That, along with the up-and-coming generation of social media gurus that can Tweet, post, check-in, Like and comment in one fell swoop, the job of Social Media Director may quickly become a thing of the past. As social media becomes more heavily integrated and inherent in everyone’s lives, it will become less of a load to manage social media efforts. There are already programs and Web sites in place that allow people to manage all of their social media outlets from one location. Blackberry cell phones now not only come with Facebook and Twitter applications, but with Social Beat, an application that lets the user view and manage multiple social media sites from one application. More of these sorts of programs are sure to come out, minimizing the daunting task of keeping up with it all.
For the generation of public relations practitioners entering the workforce, maybe taking a Social Media Director position wouldn’t be a bad first job, but don’t expect it to be a lifelong career.