|Senior Social Media Manager|
|Advertising, marketing and PR|
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A day in the life of a Senior Social Media Manager in the United Kingdom
Don't worry if you don't know what you want to do, many friends have changed careers in the almost 10 years since they graduated so don't stress that your first job will be your last.
Briefly describe the organisation you work for
I work for Publicis Media which is an international advertising group. I work within Publicis Media Content where we create social media content, do partnerships with big brands, and have an editorial department as well as strategy and insights team.
What do you do?
I am a social media manager which means that I manage different brands social media channels, so what you see on Facebook or Instagram for brands. At the moment I am doing lots of competitor research around what insurance brands are doing on social media, as well as community management (responding to the general public on Facebook/Instagram/Twitter), and reporting on social media performance and analytics. I also have days where we think of creative ideas and also have to advise on social media strategy.
Reflecting upon your past employment and education, what led you to your current career choice?
When I was at York I did my dissertation on Social Media and Elections, and I have always been an avid consumer of all media. I am also quite a creative person so it was natural to choose a career path in advertising. I spent 3 years as an account manager in creative agencies and then moved into social media because I wanted to have more impact on the creative side of advertising, account management is more of a project management role. I also have many different skills that I use as a social media manger and I enjoy that every project is different.
Is your current job sector different from what you thought you would enter when you graduated?
Yes. Advertising and media and communications is such a broad sector that there are many different jobs. In many ways it is much more specialised than I imagined, and there are many different good and bad sides to it.
Describe your most memorable day at work
Oh god.. so many. When I worked on Peugeot I got to spend a day driving round an old disused air field with a rally driving instructor so that was really cool, and also going to shoots on location to shoot food content is always fun. With Publicis I got to do a two week exchange program where work paid for me to go to Germany for two weeks and I got to go to Dusseldorf carnival which was lots of fun, and not dissimilar to freshers week.
Are there any challenges associated with your job?
Yes. Personally I find that balancing organising many different tasks and staying productive is a challenge. Also, in advertising and media you have to work with many different kinds of people who are all very opinionated so you have to use soft skills to get on with everyone and remain professional. In an industry where people work very hard, the hours can be long so it's important to set boundaries on your work life balance and also to manage your stress levels. Thankfully over the years I have become much better at managing my stress levels and putting things into persepctive.
What’s your work environment and culture like?
The media industry is fun and definitely can have a work hard, and play hard culture. Luckily within my current agency there is a great culture of support and knowledge sharing which is really important.
What extracurricular activities did you undertake at university and what transferable skills did you develop through these?
I was president of University of York riding club, and there I learned about organising socials, which I have taken on in almost every job I have had. It's also a good way of learning to speak in front of people too. I also worked as a terrible features editor in York Vision which may have helped my copywriting skills, and I worked as a camp counsellor in America which enhanced by team work skills. Also group project work is good practice for collaboration.
What would you like to do next with your career?
I will hopefully stay with Publicis for longer and will get promoted to Social Director. I really like working for Publicis as they look after their employees and are an amazing team to work for. I am also considering getting an in-house job working as a social media manager for a brand.
What top tips do you have for York students preparing for today’s job market and life after graduation?
1. Don't ask don't get - email people you find on LinkedIn and reach out to anyone in your network for advice.
2. Don't be too picky for your first job, getting a job as a receptionist in an industry you're interested in could be a foot in the door.
3. Do work experience before you graduate -if you can.
4. Don't worry if you don't know what you want to do, many friends have changed careers in the almost 10 years since they graduated so don't stress that your first job will be your last.
What topics from students are you happy to answer questions on?
Marketing, advertising, communications PR, media -general work advice.
Is there anything else you’d like to tell us?
Please contact me - I have been in your position so I am happy to help out!!!
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