When I was in college (2006-2010), social media wasn’t something I thought I would ever make a career out of. At that time, social media meant “Facebook stalking” the guys in the dorm next door, posting horribly embarrassing weekend photos that were hilarious at the time, and procrastinating. Now, it’s a major part of my career.
Social media came to life at just the right time for me to capitalize on it. When I graduated, everyone wanted to hire someone to do social media – but no one really knew what social media was, how to leverage it to boost sales, or who was actually qualified for the job. That allowed me to carve my own niche and answer those questions for people instead of following the beaten path.
This is one of the benefits of social media. It’s an ever-evolving industry that continues to motivate the innovators of our generation on a daily basis. If you have a voice, you have an endless choice of platforms to speak on. It allows those who prefer to hide behind a screen instead of getting up to speak in front of a room (that’s me) to make a splash and let their voice be heard.
There are a lot of misconceptions about social media as a career, especially for writers. I’m a writer, so naturally, I thought that if I wrote a great post, the rest would handle itself. This could not be further from the truth. Social media marketing generates results with great content, yes – but the marketing aspect takes a lot more than pretty words.What good is great content if no one sees it? This is something I learn more about every single day, and it is a fascinating process.
On the other hand, social media is a double-edged sword. There is a dark side to it that I think our society should be paying more attention to. I often express how sorry I am for young teenagers who have their whole world at their fingertips – being a teen was hard enough when you simply had the thought that your classmates were cooler than you. These days, kids know their classmates are having more fun than they are, because it’s right in front of them. Kids are killing themselves over Instagram. This is devastating. As a millennial who grew up in the middle of social media’s rise to glory, I understand – but I don’t have the solution. I hope our society can come up with one in the near future.
Overall, whether you love it or hate it, social media is here to stay. The only rational solution, in my opinion, is to make it work for you.