In this video, I talk about the role of social media and the differences between digital marketing. The answer is not as easy as you would think. It really does depend upon who you ask. In smaller companies, or startups, usually one person or team manages everything from public relations, events, demand gen, paid media and also social media marketing. Enjoy the video and subscribe to my Youtube channel to be the notified when new videos are added.
In larger, more established companies, social media typically is either a part of the PR team, marketing, and in some cases they have their own center of excellence.
I think it’s important to first define digital marketing as a job function. A lot of this is semantics but I’ll be as specific as possible. Typically, digital marketing encompasses everything that happens somewhere on the Internet:
- Backend website development of databases and e-commerce infrastructure
- Frontend web development and UI
- Landing page and microsite development
- Paid media to include display advertising, brand partnerships and paid search
Here is where it can get confusing for some. Again, every company is different and organizes their teams based on business goals and objectives so the role of social media will be different.
In social media, when a brand is using it as an extension of PR, it’s typically not a high priority for them. Mainly because they are using it to share news strictly about themselves. They’re relying on organic reach in order to engage with audiences. And we all know that organic reach is an oxymoron because it doesn’t exist.
For more sophisticated brands that prioritize the role of social media in a larger marketing mix R investing large into paid social and using it to drive leads, generate awareness and reach new audiences.
The role of social media encompasses several different skill sets. Content strategy and copywriting are core to telling stories across the social media ecosystem. Understanding the marriage between post copy and creative is a skill that all social media managers should master.
Also, paid social needs to be a focus area in the larger role of social media because it’s the only way to reach audiences with content that matters.
Lastly, data and analytics must also be a priority for social media managers in order to understand audience affinity’s, trending topics, channel usage and media preferences. There are several audience intelligence platforms that can help with this.
So the short answer to all of this is that it depends. In some cases social media does mean digital marketing. In other cases social media is just an extension of PR.
The good news in all of this is that if you understand content, creative, paid media and data, you should be able to make an impact in any type of marketing role, digital or not. This is the role of social media in most companies.