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How to Get Started as a Social Media Manager with Little or No Experience

Last week I had the pleasure of speaking at the Ad Club Career Rocket about careers in social media.  There are many young people looking to get in to this emerging and growing field, yet it is difficult to get started without experience.

Here are some tips to get started in social media marketing if you are lacking the experience on your resume.

There are a few core skills that I think are important for social media managers. As this is a growing field there are many with little to no experience working in this field.

1) Know the Social Media Tools
First, you need to have familiarity with the social media tools (Facebook, Blogging, Twitter, etc). Obviously the fact that you are here suggests as much.

2) Build your Personal Presence
Next you will need a solid personal presence on the core social sites. Even if you are a social media manager for a company, people will look to know you personally. Show that you have passion for the tools with your own presence on these sites. Share your insights, knowledge and discovery of social media on all of these sites.

3) Find Mentors and Connect with Influencers
After you have a solid presence for yourself on social media sites, look to connect with people who may be mentors for you. Find the key influencers in your community and look to connect with them online and in real life. Become a real part of your social media community.

4) Get Some Experience
Get some experience.  Look for a family friend with a small business or volunteer somewhere.  Get at least some experience in social media marketing. You can also look for internships with respected social media marketers.  An internship will allow you to gain experience from a seasoned pro vs. figuring it out yourself with a non-profit.

5) Learn Everything You Can

Read as much as possible about social media marketing.  Learn as much as you can.  Look at other social media marketing executions and become a student of the subject.  This will help position you for success.

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