Social Media Professionals: The Modern Day Clark Kent?

April 20, 2012
Social media professionals have to learn to work smart due to all of the information and data that they need…...
Social Media Professionals: The Modern Day Clark Kent? featured image

Social media professionals have to learn to work smart due to all of the information and data that they need to process on a daily basis. Here's a quick run-down how I approach content curation as part of my daily routine.

[caption id="attachment_2774" align="alignright" width="224"]Keri Jaehnig of Idea Girl Media suggests that social media consultants are a bit like modern-day "Clark Kent." image credit: Lets Not Talk About Movies[/caption]

Do social media professionals really need the characteristics of Clark Kent?

For social media professionals, it is quite an undertaking to stay current on news and headlines that affect the role.  Think about it:

Social media is an Internet-based vehicle that exists in a 24/7/365 world and evolves as fast as people can type or speak their thoughts.

No matter what area of social media one might be involved in, they constantly need to be up on a wide range of news and trends.

Yes -- On local, national, and world headlines so there is an awareness of what will be social.  But also on each relevant social network - for various demographics - And any tools or applications that connect with those platforms.

Not to mention the frequently rolled-out start-ups hoping to move the needle in the social space.

Earning Your "S"

A large agency, will have several tools implemented to accommodate their client base.  There is most likely a systematic approach where duties are shared by more than one staff member.  A small consultancy will utilize online listening tools, and may have a small staff that share duties to be aware of topics that affect their clients.

Same requirements, different way of getting things done.

How much information does a social media professional look at each day?  The regular Sam or Samantha may be blown away!

I have set up a custom feed.  Like my own world news channel.  This includes major globally known sources, thought leaders and topic authorities, social media blogs, news for client industries, and personal interests.  Each publishes at different intervals:

  • Weekly.
  • Daily.
  • 2-3 times per day.
  • 6-20 times per day.
  • 50-100 times per day.
  • And sometimes more.

Those publishing times will vary depending on happening news in each genre.  So, if there is a big release from a major social network, like Facebook's recent conversion of Timeline for brand pages, it may be that we see information published hourly!

Using Your Superpowers

One recent morning my custom news channel offered over 500 potential articles of interest.  I scanned each feed, and eliminated the irrelevant, pulled up stories that seemed like potential for sharing, skimmed again, and narrowed it down to 12 for focus.  Here are the resulting topics:

  • Growing a twitter following that matters.
  • Facebook ad engagement down in the US.
  • Kred influence rankings.
  • Things to tweet about your brand.
  • Effects of nurturing intelligence in children.
  • LinkedIn tips for small business
  • Facebook applications.
  • Disney's production in China.
  • Wildfire's Video Contest Capabilities.
  • What to do about a Facebook page that sucks.
  • Getting more visitors to your blog.
  • Podcasting.

That's just the morning, just the group of topics that fit that specific AM search.  I chose them for general awareness, probable updates, insight from a specific source, and personal curiosity.

Each social media professional will have their own combination of sources, and their own frequency of checking-in and processing their world of news.  So if someone reviews their news three times a day, that might be as many as 1500 news bytes to monitor in a day!

Forget The Tights

One thing is certain: It's a never-ending fire hose of details!  And as social media marketers, managers, and consultants, we become reporters of this news, dispersing relevant content to fans, followers, and communities.

Where previous generations would have stacks of newspapers and magazines on a coffee table, the modern-day "Clark Kent" has a number of tabs up on their browser, ready to reference.  Each with a varying degree of kinetic movement.

So the next time you wonder the value of your social media manager or social media consultant, consider their "virtual phone booth" and all the things they might be doing for you that you don't see.

Chances are, they wear a big cape!

Your turn!

Are you a social media professional?  How many tabs do you have up at a time?

Was there anything I forgot?

Please tell me in the comments box below...



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