Social Media is Not a Career

44 replies
I read this article on forbes. She had advice for 20 year old and I was surprised to see that one of her points was:

"Social Media is Not a Career - These job titles won't exist in 5 years. Social media is simply a function of marketing; it helps support branding, ROI or both. Social media is a means to get more awareness, more users or more revenue. It's not an end in itself. I'd strongly caution against pegging your career trajectory solely to a social media job title."

I personally feel that what she said is true and this is one of the dangers of not only Social Media jobs but of anything related to Internet Marketing.

Its great to make money of the internet but if you are an internet marketer you put all your eggs in the basket called internet as opposed to being a marketer where you put your eggs in many different baskets. That is why I am working on a masters degree in business and hope to become a management consultant some day. Many times I think, I can work just as hard sitting at home, spend half the money I spend on education and make twice as more. But I still think it is worth it. Though Internet Marketing is great and I certainly love it, there is a certain risk that you cant quite foresee, but it doesn't mean that the risk is not there. The smart thing to do would be to diversify so that you minimize that risk. I know it takes a long time before you become really good in one area. But most people who become good in one area, don't do anything after that just because they make enough money just doing that.

What do you guys think about this? I know many of the warriors do just Social Media Jobs full time and others purely SEO and Affliate Marketing and I am sure you make quite a lot of money. But have you guys diversified yet? If you haven't, don't you guys think that you are putting yourself in a huge risk?
#career #internet marketing #media #seo #social #social media
  • Profile picture of the author ravenx
    Social media will always be big because it's an extension of customer service. If you don't do it, the customer service department will (and they'll have a social media expert on staff)
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  • Profile picture of the author Devin X
    Banned
    I'm pretty sure it was a dude that wrote the original article, not a dudette. Maybe you're reading a plagarized article? Anyway, the guy is full of sh*t. No one has a crystal ball to see in the future, and sure, SMM is only one facet of the marketing mix, but it isn't going anywhere. Nu/New/Social/Digital media jobs will be in demand within 5 years...not gone.
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  • Profile picture of the author isadoregregory
    although i have to say social media has actually evolved into a career for a lot of people, it will also be ideal to spend your time pursuing other interests, preferably offline. social media sure is one trending topic, but some might say this is just a passing frenzy or a fad, we will never know for sure. what matters is that those of us who keep a social media day job will have something else to fall back on when it goes kaput!
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  • Profile picture of the author ParkerArrow
    Social media will evolve into social engineering.
    Mwuahahaha.
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  • Profile picture of the author jbthemummy
    Social Media? I hate that word OH SO MUCH!
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  • Profile picture of the author Moneymaker2012
    B Please! Social media is the real deal. I did not read the article, and don't want to. Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Stumblupon are good examples of business success.
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  • Profile picture of the author GoldPro
    Times are changing. Social media, Internet marketing, SEO specialists, etc, are certainly viable and thriving careers.
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  • Profile picture of the author SantiSantana
    Originally Posted by alrikvincent View Post

    But most people who become good in one area, don't do anything after that just because they make enough money just doing that.
    Therein lies the real problem.

    Internet and everything around it is still evolving. Heck, even TV is still evolving and it's been around for over half a century. Radio is still evolving. The ones that are having trouble evolving are the ones having trouble (no word game intended) i.e "The Press"

    Social media manager may well not exist as a job title in 5 years. Most likely because it will have evolved to something bigger with a wider knowledge base, not because it dissapears into the ether.

    Internet is not a fad, its a new communication channel like TV was in the past, and Radio, and written media before that. Youwant to expand outside of internet? Great Idea. Manycompanies that were only internet based have succesfully gone bricks and mortar. Internet has also helped brick and mortar businesses reach a new audience they could not effectively reach before.

    Your masters degree is a great idea. Don't let anyone talk you into thinking otherwise. Just don't cut your options short just because of someone else's say so without exploring the possibilities for yourself, even with help if necessary.

    Hope this helps.
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  • Profile picture of the author Gambino
    I would be interested in hiring an 'Social Media Expert' if it lead to a greater brand awareness and ROI. So it's hard for me to say "social media is not a career."

    I believe social media will continue to expand and become more popular. So, I think there will be room for expansion for those in who make a living in social media. Thus, I disagree that "these jobs won't exist in five years."
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    • Profile picture of the author CyberAlien
      Originally Posted by Gambino View Post

      I would be interested in hiring an 'Social Media Expert' if it lead to a greater brand awareness and ROI. So it's hard for me to say "social media is not a career."
      I think they meant that social media by itself wasn't really a career. While it can be great for marketing and customer service, it just isn't one of those things that a business could solely depend on because of how much it changes - but in reality, a stable business should never completely depend on one thing.
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  • Profile picture of the author RakeshJha
    Social Media platform is increasing every year. Now a day the social media is not just limited to PC now the website and social media app come into the mobile marketing. I think the mobile marketing is the biggest market of the work around 80% of people are using mobile and 30% of them using smart phone. So I think if some one looking career in social media field he doesn't need worried about market. Because social media can change there face according to market and human requirement.
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  • Profile picture of the author JonPKibble
    Originally Posted by alrikvincent View Post

    Its great to make money of the internet but if you are an internet marketer you put all your eggs in the basket called internet as opposed to being a marketer where you put your eggs in many different baskets.
    This stands true for pretty much anything. The more you specialize, the more you risk "putting all your eggs in one basket". It's better to diversify your expertise.

    Any degree you get (OK, maybe not History or English) is going to require adaptation and new knowledge. I think it's safe to say social media will be around for awhile, but its role in marketing could definitely change at some point. Either way, you might as well profit off it while it's popular, and if that ever changes then you simply adapt. Social media is just one tool in a marketer's toolbox.

    For what it's worth, it seems many companies have jobs specifically for a social media manager - so I think this is a sign that social media is here to stay for awhile.
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  • Profile picture of the author DubDubDubDot
    Anyone who thinks social media is a career needs to go find the SEO service providers from 10 years ago and ask them what happened. Pretty much all of them crashed and burned years ago. You just don't hear about their troubles because they are long gone and have "real" jobs again.

    The SEO guys that worked for themselves gaming the system lasted longer, but Google's updates have choked their income off. There is widespread panic among the SEO guys nowadays.

    Working the social media system will go down that same road. Treat it as one form of marketing out of many and you shouldn't have a problem as long as you're on top of the other methods also.
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    • Profile picture of the author alrikvincent
      Hi guys.

      Yes the original article was by a guy. You can find it here.


      Originally Posted by DubDubDubDot View Post

      Anyone who thinks social media is a career needs to go find the SEO service providers from 10 years ago and ask them what happened. Pretty much all of them crashed and burned years ago. You just don't hear about their troubles because they are long gone and have "real" jobs again.

      The SEO guys that worked for themselves gaming the system lasted longer, but Google's updates have choked their income off. There is widespread panic among the SEO guys nowadays.

      Working the social media system will go down that same road. Treat it as one form of marketing out of many and you shouldn't have a problem as long as you're on top of the other methods also.
      This is exactly what I was suggesting might happen to Social Media. Most people who are in the job have an optimism bias that Social Media is here to stay forever. It need not be true and focusing on just one area of internet marketing will put you in so much risk that you can get wiped out or crushed any day. The more you diversify the safer you are.


      Originally Posted by shane_k View Post

      The problem with this whole discussion is it is focused on the "Job Title" and forgeting about the skills you develop in that job or career. (Whatever you want to call it)

      Think about the skills someone has to develop to be successful at social media

      they have to know how to get their audience's attention
      they have to know how to keep their audience interested
      they have to know how to drive their audience to various offers
      they have to know how to get their audience to buy


      These are just some of the skills someone has to learn and they are transferable skills.

      If you have the skill of being able to get people to buy through your ad copy that you use on twitter, or through a post on your facebook page you can take those ad copy skills and apply them in another job or career.

      By focusing on the job title the author of this article is just showing their lack of understanding of what social media actually is.

      And if you think about it Social Media at it's core has been around longer than the internet itself, but again the author is only looking at the online aspect of it, showing more lack of understanding.
      This might seem like a valid point at first but you have to realize the dynamics in each platform is not the same. If you have skills that you can use to get people to buy stuff or engage on Facebook, then it does not mean you could transfer those very same skills to twitter. This is because the dynamics in the two platforms are completely different and you will have to build different skills to succeed. To think you can sell/promote anything anywhere because you are good at selling on facebook or twitter will be a mistake. If you make a career out of this, then that career might end if any of these platforms were to end and you will see that in reality, the skill sets are not really as transferable as you might have thought.
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  • Profile picture of the author mcgrathcullin
    I definitely agree with the original poster, as well as the one previous to me. The jobs that are here now were for the most part not here 20 years ago, and this will hold true 20 years from now. It is a safe bet getting a degree, it puts you above many people in our country and world who don't have a degree.

    We do not know where the world will take us, to put all of our hopes into Internet Marketing is not the best idea as this is a very competitive world full of competitive people. Each and every job people are led to believe that they are irreplaceable, until the next best person comes along and steals your job and works for cheaper. Playing it safe and getting an education is the best call for anyone, whether or not it puts you into debt for years to come.
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  • Profile picture of the author Brenda Trott
    Well where was she when people were mortgaging their houses to own a video store? And what ever happened to those fotomat booths? Oh wait...didn't her father pump people's gas FOR A LIVING (you could raise a family on that salary in the 50's)

    I say go where the opportunity lies...and that is ALWAYS in diversification.
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  • Profile picture of the author icandi
    Maybe the writer of the article posted this image

    Although I don't make money directly from Social Media, it has been a great asset in terms of generating interest for my off-line business and have made sales further down the line from enquiries which were most definitely as a result of having a presence on Facebook. I don't exploit it as much as I maybe should but I treat it as an extension of my web-page rather than many of my competing businesses who have a FB page and nothing more.

    I think that the Social Media business will continue to grow and although it might evolve into something quite different in years to come in terms of the platforms, maybe it might not be as focused on the current offerings. It most definitely will not disappear.

    Just an opinion as too often journalists are quick to make assumptions.
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  • Profile picture of the author jones115
    Banned
    I disagree. SMM is best career you can imagine. SMM is a great field we are developing right now! I`ve just created an article about future VK.com and FB wars. Need your feedback, pals.
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  • I disagree. Social media is going to be a bigger and you could work for the social media companies.
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  • Profile picture of the author VivekThakur
    I with it "Social Media is Not a Career" but it is not going to be end, there is many
    possibility of changes in techniques.
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    • Profile picture of the author Walter Parrish
      LOL

      Reminds me of that song History Repeating.

      It's All Marketing and will grow on you over time. If you stick to the basics then you will prosper. When I built my first websites some of the biggest sites had 20 backlinks and that was a lot back then.

      As far as education I would say learn as much as you can anywhere you can. If you can grasp Internet Marketing and grab a formal education you will definitely make your mark.
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  • Profile picture of the author shane_k
    The problem with this whole discussion is it is focused on the "Job Title" and forgeting about the skills you develop in that job or career. (Whatever you want to call it)

    Think about the skills someone has to develop to be successful at social media

    they have to know how to get their audience's attention
    they have to know how to keep their audience interested
    they have to know how to drive their audience to various offers
    they have to know how to get their audience to buy


    These are just some of the skills someone has to learn and they are transferable skills.

    If you have the skill of being able to get people to buy through your ad copy that you use on twitter, or through a post on your facebook page you can take those ad copy skills and apply them in another job or career.

    By focusing on the job title the author of this article is just showing their lack of understanding of what social media actually is.

    And if you think about it Social Media at it's core has been around longer than the internet itself, but again the author is only looking at the online aspect of it, showing more lack of understanding.
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  • Profile picture of the author Anne0521
    All I know is that I used social media and still do because it helps a lot to my online business.
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  • Profile picture of the author RestlessBlaze
    what about results? Iif someone comes to me and say "i am going to increase your brand awareness, your product's image and create interest for your product. I did this for x company and got this result. I can do this againfor your company and it will add $$$ to your bottomline."

    Even if i get this kind of proposal with strong proof, i will consider him even after 10 years. Iif he writes socialmedia manager or facebook manager or ashton kucher secretary, it doesnt matter much to me.
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  • Profile picture of the author RestlessBlaze
    When the next evolution of social media will happen. All these people will be one step closer in harnessing those new avenues.
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  • Profile picture of the author webproishere
    Social medias are not going to fade away trust me !

    It's like saying that INTERNET will "close" and that it will not work out.
    Yep, i heard that in the mid 90's lol.....
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  • Profile picture of the author Dan H Kim
    'Social media refers to the means of interactions among people in which they create, share, and exchange information and ideas in virtual communities and networks.' -
    'Social media technologies take on many different forms including magazines, Internet forums, weblogs, social blogs, microblogging, wikis, social networks, podcasts, photographs or pictures, video, rating and social bookmarking.'
    -Wikipedia definition.

    Social Media will only continue to get bigger. Do you really think huge companies like Facebook, twitter and reddit will soon lose business. We as human beings are social animals. The internet is getting more and more social. It will only continue to do so.

    With that said Social media will only die out if the internet dies. And I don't see anything in the future replacing it. I only see a continuation of technology that makes the internet even bigger (ie. mobile devices, smart TVs).
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  • Profile picture of the author bestadservice
    I think marketers will know first if social media will not be working anymore and we will move to something else - but in the end it is all about the skills you acquire then the title in carrier. If you are successful in one field then you easily could change and adapt to another one close to that.
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  • Actually for me Social Media is a career especially for those SEO professionals without Social media SEO is dead because its very difficult to make a traffic without the help of social media sites especially Facebook.
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  • Profile picture of the author Geri Richmond
    Hi,
    I think social media is only going to get bigger. It's done nothing but grow! It might depend on what area of Social Media you are talking about. Social media experts will always be needed.
    Geri Richmond
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  • Profile picture of the author seobro
    Back in the early 90's I was creating web pages. People told me the internet was a fad and would go away. They pointed to CB radio in the 70's and how it was super popular once. Well, I am still creating web pages now. In fact, the internet continues to grow. Social media is exploding and it is now mega. Expect this to keep on being so.
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  • Profile picture of the author jasondinner
    I look at Social Media as yet another marketing channel with each outlet being a sub-channel.

    Right now it just happens to be an extremely profitable marketing channel with more than enough money to go around for everyone who properly harnesses its power.

    However, that's not to say that there may come a time when this particular channel dries up and may be replaced by a "new" marketing channel.
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  • Profile picture of the author RestlessBlaze
    seo guys are dead? Who told you? SEO industry is gaining momentum day by day. I have seen people just throw money on seo companies. It all comes down to whether you can deliver results or not. If you want $500 to add bunch of lunatic followers which never turn into profit, your job is in danger. But, if you turn these facebook fans into obsessive brand fans or buyers, you will always have money.

    Also, someone who understand social media can go to newer avenues relatively fast. Those who learnt c,moved to c++ and then to c# . Most of these are now app developers. A skill is a skill, you got to keep reinventing yourself.
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    • Profile picture of the author Chris Silvey
      Give it a year or 2, Google will probably de index social media links due to excessive link bombing/spamming.
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      • Profile picture of the author jasondinner
        Originally Posted by Chris Silvey View Post

        Give it a year or 2, Google will probably de index social media links due to excessive link bombing/spamming.
        That's fine. People who really own social media dont rely on google for traffic anyway.

        One of my sites gets 7K uniques per day (mostly from facebook), and Google accounts for a whopping 50-75 a day.
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  • Profile picture of the author profnkata
    social media is just another marketing channel, its a new technology platform just like tv, radio, newspapers and other marketing channels. yes u use the same marketing principles but its a career in itself. its a fast moving industry but its here to stay.
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  • Profile picture of the author salpa
    yes it is true social media is a kind of source of issue in a society so it is but sometime it doesn't take any longer for a good career.
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  • Profile picture of the author koreancowboy
    SM is my career, and it's only looking up for me.
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  • Profile picture of the author hustlinsmoke
    Everything changes over time. She is probably right. There will be some next big thing out there. Maybe head gear where we can telepath our thoughts to the chat rooms instead lol.
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  • Profile picture of the author Willie Crawford
    I believe that social media consultants will still be in demand 5 or even
    10 years from now.

    At the same time, many jobs that people traditionally trained for often
    go away, or the market changes in other ways. An example is that I
    have several friends with formal computer science and programming
    backgrounds. They have trouble finding the work that they want,
    at the wages that they want, because so much of that work is now
    outsourced "off shore."

    You develop a core set of skills, and call it what you want, and then
    adjust as things inevitably evolve.

    I'd have no problem with someone branding themselves as a social
    media expert. I would advise them to constantly improve their
    skills so that OTHERS build their reputations and send them clients
    via word of mouth.

    Willie
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  • Profile picture of the author MarketMaster13
    That's a great idea,we always have to diversify our income but i believe social media will keep growing and as things changes it will also keep evolving.
    IM will always be my Pet though I am also working on My masters degree
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  • Profile picture of the author MzBoston
    Pace University's Lubin School of Business offers a MS Social Media Marketing But they position it/offer it as a now necessary tool for IT professionals.
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  • Profile picture of the author PeterMFL
    Social Media is awesome! People doing that should be paid more than what they are since A LOT of the traffic comes from that source...
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