Very few people reading this can actually claim to be away from the grip of social media. Be it Facebook or Twitter, LinkedIn or Skype, social media is something that has empowered all of us. As individuals we end up spending a good quantity of our time on social media.
The opinions that we express on social media speak volumes about how we feel about things. They also talk about our interests and the possible things that we might be interested in. So, it is obvious that a lot of information can be garnered from whatever we do on social media. This sort of work is carried out by social media analytics experts.
Now the advent of social media is something that can be traced back only to the mid-1990s. The popularity amongst a diverse section of people is something that came in much later. The idea of capitalising on all of this and using it to come up with innovative marketing techniques is something that is pretty new.
In fact, it will be fair to say that this is one of the fastest-growing and emerging professions amongst the new professions of this decade. This article explores the world of social media analytics and tells you how you can make a career out of it.
• Background Required
One interesting aspect of social media analytics is that it is an amalgamation of social science and computer science. Thus, people with a background in sociology, political science, geology, physics, applied mathematics or computer science are eligible to pursue a career in this field. The roles that they perform in this field are varied.
Students from the background of political science can also join this profession. Their role would be to follow political protests that are unfolding online and comment or report on the same. People with knowledge of multiple languages are preferred for positions like these as such people can use their linguistic skills to foster the conversation and exchange information between communities and direct the same in the path of communal harmony.
• Course To Be Taken
Social media analytics is something that must be pursued as a higher education course. A number of diploma courses are available in this regard. You can choose to opt for inbound marketing certification courses, digital storytelling and social media courses or even those in social media marketing for international business. Most of these courses are also available in the form of part-time courses or distance education courses.
Thus, if you are a student pursuing formal academic studies or someone who is working in a company, you can learn social media analytics in your free time and then try to switch to a career path that would utilise the same. In fact, some universities allow students of particular master's courses (especially those of sociology and political science) to pursue electives related to social media analytics. These students have a higher chance of bagging a job if they seek the same in this field.
• Job Scope
This is one profession where there is not a lot of a scope in the government sector. For those seeking employment, there are two career options that are on offer. You can either choose to work for private organisations or for start-ups.
A number of e-commerce sites are now dependent on reports coming in from their social media analysts for their marketing strategies. Media houses depend on the opinion of social media experts to decide which news or article should be given priority over the others. These days even third-party service providers are employing social media analytics experts in order to maximize the gain with minimal investment.
If you are really passionate about your work you can seek employment in the start-up sector as well. Although jobs here are more demanding as compared to that in the corporate sector, the learning curve here is steeper. Thus, it is a very good platform for students to kick-start their career.
As diverse as the job role is, the salary structure is equally varied. Since this role is very crucial in bringing in actual money for a company, most companies do not mind shelling out a good amount of money for employing people who are proficient in this field. Most media houses start off with an initial amount that is above Rs 50,000.
For e-commerce sites, the mean starting salary is close to Rs 42,000 and varies from company to company. Needless to say, if you plan to freelance in this field, your salary may be above or below this mark depending on the number of hours you are ready to put in and how talented you are.
• Tools That You Can Master
As is evident from the nature of the job, there is a major cyber dependency in this field. Thus, if you are considering a career in this field, you must be proficient in basic Word and Excel skills. Other than that you will have an upper edge if you can monitor the statistics and data traffic of a website or a URL using tools like SEMrush.
In the world of social media analytics, you will be in much greater power if you have complete information of what each user does on your website (this would include actions like clicking, opening links, swapping and things like that). For that you do not really have to be a master coder.
Being proficient in specific technical skills can maximise your effort in this field and help you get ahead of your peers. An example in this regard will be that of Ghostery which allows you to gather a lot of information about what people are looking for on social media without giving out too much information about yourself. By mastering the different social media analytics tools, you are actually working your way through the basics of data mining as well.