It is no exaggeration to state that social media has become a part of life for a majority of people the world over, be it teenagers, millennials or even veterans. Even though social media was created to connect with friends and family, professional marketers gradually adapted it to connect with their target audience. And what an astounding success it was. That social media has gone on to become a vital marketing tool in a short period of time, is now a universally accepted fact.
Marketing departments of different businesses, across all industry sectors, employ social media marketing professionals. These professionals, imbibe a good amount of domain knowledge and pick up several social media skills in course of their employment.
Even as new jobs emerge and there are opportunities for career advancement in social media, there also is a temptation to turn a freelancer. But, does a social media marketing freelancer has adequate opportunities to make a comfortable living? That’s the lingering question that haunts many aspiring social media marketers. A question that needs due attention if you’re seriously contemplating to make a living as a Social Media Marketing Freelancer.
Social Media Marketing Freelance Jobs
Let’s look at 5 ways, you can monetize your skills in social media marketing.
1.) Consultant – Social Media Marketing
A social media marketing professional can easily fit into the role of a consultant by virtue of not just her knowledge of social media but also how it could benefit businesses of all types and sizes.
The fact that social media marketing is being adopted universally by all businesses proves that it is highly beneficial. Yet, it is not something that sales and marketing professionals in any business can implement effectively and optimally on their own. They do need the help of a social marketing professional.
As a consultant to a business, your first task is to lay down a sound Social Media Strategy depending on the type of business and more specifically the type of customers and consumers. For e.g. if the customers are mostly millennials, then social media anyway plays a large part in their lives. The social media platforms have to be carefully chosen keeping the marketing and business objectives in mind.
Having laid down a suitable Social Media Strategy, the next step would be to formulate a Social Media Publishing Plan which could be implemented along with the marketing staff of the business entity. The Social Media Publishing Plan would include posts to be made on different platforms, along with their frequency, and type of campaigns to be run. The consultant would be able to adopt some SEO features in the social media posts and campaigns, so that the business would be ranked favorably by the Google algorithm.
With your knowledge of analytics, you would be able to monitor different metrics and measure the performance across different social media channels. With these performance metrics to guide you, you would be able to tweak the Social Media Strategy and Plan at any point of time, so the business could derive maximum benefit in terms of more leads and conversions.
Having a strategic approach towards Social Media and the ability to align this strategy with larger marketing and business objectives is a sought after skills. If you work towards becoming a successful and capable Social Media Marketing Strategy Consultant working as a freelance, it could prove to be quite a rewarding choice, both in career growth and financially.
2.) Content Creation
The importance of content is something every social media marketing professional knows only too well. Even as there is growing preference for videos, the written content is always vital.
Being used to writing social media posts across different platforms, and running campaigns, every social media professional would know the basics of headline and copywriting, and how to create engaging text.
This competence with content creation would enable you to offer social media content to different businesses. It is of course important to also incorporate pictures, graphics and other appealing visual elements along with the written content, which as a social media professional you are anyway experienced in.
You would obviously keep track of social media trends and offer content that would not just be engaging but easy to consume as well. With increasing usage of mobile phones, you would offer social media content, which is compatible with mobile screens of all sizes.
As the world becomes more and more digital, content is only going to be more in demand. If you manage to groom yourself to become a content wizard, one that has a deep understanding of Social Media Marketing, you’ve got a very good shot at making a lucrative living as a Social Media Marketing Freelance.
3.) Affiliate Marketing
This is another area where a Social Media Marketing professional can earn a decent income. In basic terms, you can become part of an affiliate network and earn a commission once purchase takes place from your site. It is based on revenue sharing model. Amazon affiliate marketing is one such program, which is among the largest and the most popular in the world at present.
Before getting into Affiliate Marketing, it is very important to know one’s niche or area of domain expertise. This would be different for each social media professional, for it would depend upon your previous experience and knowledge base.
Having worked on different social platform and having been part of different social media campaigns, you would have reasonable knowledge about different products and services and how to promote them.
Once the type of product or service is chosen, you can go on to select the affiliate networks you would like to work with. It is good to start with a few products and then gradually expand the product base.
You can write a blog or social media posts to promote the products, which you have chosen in your Affiliate Marketing plan and start earning regular commission based income.
4.) Brand Building on Social Media Channels
As a social media marketing professional, you are fundamentally a marketer and therefore brand building has got to be a part of your core skill set. You could offer your brand building skills on social media, to different businesses.
It is also important for you to build your own brand as a freelancer. You can do this with the help of a website and by creating and regularly publishing your own accounts on different social media platforms.
You would need to define your niche competence and areas of focus. It is important that your individual brand should project a consistent persona and brand attributes in all your social profiles. It may also be a good idea to create a logo which would represent your brand’s core attributes and identity.
In pursuit of building your own brand, you should make daily posts on your favorite social channels such as Twitter and Facebook. You must also join chat groups and communities who have interest in your niche.
It goes without saying that if you can grow your own brand, you can grow that of a business too. You can tell a compelling story to grow a brand. The story could be incorporated in social media posts and could also be part of a campaign.
Brand building needs a lot of visuals in the form of pictures infographics and even video. The tone, language, and colors should be consistent, and convey what a brand stands for.
5.) Offering eBooks and Tutorials on Social Media Marketing Concepts
If you are a social media marketing professional with a good knowledge base and experience in working with different businesses along with an aptitude to write well-structured content, you could consider offering eBooks and tutorials on various social media marketing topics.
Most businesses have very limited knowledge on social media marketing and they could do with some structured learning on this subject. The e-books and tutorials could be offered on your own website or on your social media platforms. For e.g. offering tutorials on “Social Media Basics” could be a good starting point and this could be offered free. In fact, a free eBook could also be offered covering basics of social media marketing.
Subsequent tutorials could cover items like, which social media platform to use, how to optimize your social media profile, how to add social media buttons on your website, and how to connect your social media pages with your blog and your website etc.
More tutorials could cover SEO and other related topics. Once your tutorials are found useful and engaging by your readers, they would be willing to pay for it, which could be a start of a reasonable and growing revenue stream over a period of time.
One of the main skills needed for writing tutorials and e-books is structured knowledge and ability to create lucid scripts and think like a teacher. It is not every social media freelancer’s cup of tea. But for those with these specific skills, a living could be made writing tutorials. And if you still have any doubts about this route, look around, there is no dearth of real success stories.
A social media marketing professional, by virtue of her experience in brand building in different social media platforms, acquires a lot of skills that can be monetized in different ways. If your calling is to be your own boss, and take the plunge as a freelancer, these skills would definitely help you earn a decent living.
Image Courtesy: Schaefer Marketing Solutions, Content Marketing Institute, Creative Solutions Together