Digi Digest with Tina Moore – Social Media as a Career
It’s strange to think that Social Media wasn’t seen as a career only 5 years ago and now it’s used as a major part of businesses strategy. Over the last few years, careers in social media have exploded as companies realize the value of reaching their customers on the medium where they spend most of their time. We sat down with Tina Moore, Head of Social Media at New Zealand’s biggest Media Company NZME to chat about the ins and outs of social media today and what we should be doing to obtain a great social strategy.
As Head of Social Media at NZME, What does a typical day look like for you?
I am in the office from 6.30am because the first of my team start at 6. I look after 52 brands in the business and of course radio starts incredibly early, so some of our Digital Producers are already in at 4am. The first thing I do is check in on our stats, look at our referral rate on Facebook for the Herald and then look at what worked in terms of content and what is going out today. Then I have a bunch of meetings with people to talk about technical issues and I often hold training sessions 3 or 4 times a week because products in social change so often. I’m also always working on some sort of strategy for a new product or brand.
That’s a lot of brands to look after?
It is, but every brand has their own Social or Digital Producer, so I mainly look after strategy and training. I’m most hands on with The Herald but I mostly look after strategy for the rest of the brands.
How did you get to where you are today?
I am a media girl. I have a long media background. I was the Editor of Remix Magazine for 9 years and then I did freelancing with Digital Social clients. I set up a business called The Classroom – which is New Zealand’s only Facebook endorsed training facility, so it involved training businesses’ in their social media strategy and technical skills. I was a freelancer and enjoying life living at the mountain and then I got the shoulder tap and someone had recommended me for this job and now the rest is history. It is all self-taught – there wasn’t or isn’t any good social media degrees and even now it’s hard to be a social media expert because it’s constantly changing.
Before working for NZME you were freelancing, what would you say are the benefits to freelancing?
Lifestyle – I was able to go skiing all day and then start working late afternoon. There are benefits but also drawbacks as well. The stability of income is always tough, managing a wide variety of clients can be challenging as well, although I do have 52 brands here, and consider each brand a client. I definitely prefer having the security of a salaried full-time job.
We attended the most recent Auckland Rec Meetup where you spoke about the “Death of Twitter” – can you elaborate?
In terms of numbers Facebook has 3.5 million active users in New Zealand, while Twitter in comparison has about 300,000 and only a small portion of people are actually active. For it to be a great platform you’ve got to give it attention and be on the tweet all of the time. There is a real hardcore group of active people on Twitter and they’re usually Journalists or Politicians or people who are commenting around Reality TV shows or events. It’s often a storm in a tea cup – there are certain people who are really active like I understand certain pockets of recruitment are “hint hint Razzbri”, but for the general public it’s not really there. For us as a media business it’s not really worthwhile us talking to other Journalists on Twitter – so we don’t use it as much.
What’s your favourite social platform & why?
Instagram – I love its simplicity and its visual captions. I feel it’s a really positive and beautiful visual place and the stories are great. I love the Snapchat element that they basically made better. I was into Snapchat as well but now I never open it because Instagram has got the stories function. They’ve got Instagram TV now too, which is cool as you can watch stuff up to an hour long on there. It’s everything visual all in one place, it’s great!
If you were new to Instagram, how would you suggest growing your following?
The first 100 followers are always the hardest, if you were a brand you would ask all of your immediate team, staff, clients and customers to join you. In order to grow your following you have to engage with your audience as well, be a good community member, like other people’s content and comment on it. You can’t just put photos on there and expect people to come to you. Also using discoverability features- using #hashtags and tag locations will make you more discoverable.
I don’t actually have one – I use #hashtags often for irony not usually for discoverability. I use them to colour my language.
Apart from LinkedIn – What do you think is the most effective social channel for recruiters?
I think it depends on the industry and the candidate you’re looking for, but I would say Instagram. I think you can get a really clear picture of who someone is through a quick scroll of their Instagram, you can also direct message them. People won’t be expecting to hear from a recruiter via Instagram. I’ve had some messages from recruiters via this medium and I thought what a great way to cut through the noise.
Are there any current social trends that we should know about?
Definitely – Video, Video, Video!
Social Media wasn’t a career option a few years ago, why do you think there is an increase in the demand for Social Media Guru’s?
It’s because large audiences are on Social Media so every brand has realised they can talk to people via social but how do they do it. There is some awful Social Media out there, so you need socially aware people who know what to do. Basically you need an expert to help you through algorithms, advertisement – it’s quite sophisticated and complex sometimes, especially in the likes of Facebook which is constantly changing.
How often do you think you need to post on social?
That’s a how long is a piece of string question – I would suggest only posting when you have something great to say. If you haven’t got something good to say don’t force yourself to stick to a schedule of posting once a day – you’re just cluttering news feeds, which is a complete waste of time. So, only post when you’ve got an interesting piece of content that you know your audience will love – whether that’s once a week or once a month.
Any advice for anyone wanting to pursue a career in social media?
There are lots of great tools that people can use to up-skill themselves – look at Facebook’s Blueprint E-learning Centre, its free! There are lots of tools and blogs to follow to keep up with changes that happen all of the time. Follow all of the Instagram, Facebook, Snapchat blogs. Most importantly be a great content maker, it’s not just about the technical side of things, you have to know how to make content, take a great photo and know how to write snappy copy.
Want to see more posts like this? Check out our previous Digi Digest here with Brett Iredale (CEO of JobAdder) & Wihan Meerholz (Senior Digital Creative at DDB New Zealand), were they talk about their opposing social media perspectives.