Return to blog

11 Skills That Every Social Media Manager Should Possess

The idea of working in social media means so many things to so many different people. But any current social media manager will tell you – there are a lot of moving pieces when it comes to running social. Long gone are the days when “doing social” meant just posting a Tweet or Facebook video. Now, there are full-on agencies and companies dedicated to ensuring brands are successful on social media.

So, how does one become a successful social media manager? Here are 11 skills that we think will aid any current or aspiring social media professional on that journey.


#1: Copywriting

Great copy should make you feel something. There’s no one better at that than Nike.


Many people think of copywriting as a separate job from social media. Your company may even have dedicated copywriters who work to create website copy, billboard copy, digital ad copy, etc. But, the captions that social media managers craft for the numerous social media channels they run are equally important. And in a sense, can be described as copywriting. 

What messaging is going to drive your fans to click to the website. What messaging will invoke them to engage with your content. What copy will entice them to spend money with your brand? Fine-tuning your writing skills, even as a social media manager, can help you meet or exceed your social KPIs. Skillshare offers great, easy-to-follow courses on copywriting!


#2: Community Engagement + Customer Service 

In 2022, community engagement is vital to social media success for any brand. When someone decides to follow your brand, their marketing journey isn’t over. It’s just beginning. 

 It’s now up to the social media manager to keep them engaged over time, in hopes that they continue to buy your product, services, and tell their family and friends about you, etc. 

Your fans want to feel like they belong to something bigger than just an Instagram account. Great customer service and engagement goes a long way on social media, so don’t be afraid to reply to comments or DMs, or even to enter into relevant conversations with those who don’t follow your brand (yet).


#3: Creative + Design Capabilities

Now, no one is expecting social media managers to be the next Picasso or Basquiat. But, having an eye for aesthetically pleasing content can help bring new life to brand channels. If you’ve gone to your favorite Instagram account and seen carefully curated templates and fonts and color palettes, that’s all done on purpose.

Having a creative eye and design capabilities will allow for your brand to stand out from the crowd, and to have a unique perspective. And that’s what potential followers want to see – a unique perspective.

Tools like Slate are making it easier than ever for professionals who want to develop creative assets, without needing graphic design experience.  


#4: Photography Experience

In a similar sense, having the ability to take high-quality photos of your products on your own will allow you to diversify content. While most brands have ready professional assets to use in showcasing products or services, fans on social media love organic content as well – so utilize that iPhone camera!

Food brand Siete Family Foods uses a mix of professional photos with organic-feeling “phone” photos to showcase its products in a way that entices the customers to stop scrolling and learn more.


#5: Videography Experience

Just like photos, having video skills can be super beneficial for creating great social content. And with platforms like Instagram rewarding accounts that utilize their Reels vertical video feature, now is the time to get familiar with video editing and creating. 


View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Los Angeles Rams (@rams)

The Los Angeles Rams do a great job of posting organic cell phone video footage after every game to showcase authentic reactions from players. Remember: video content doesn’t always need to be super produced in order to be super successful. 

With Slate, you can create a brand asset home – dragging and dropping organic video content into branded, pre-made templates. A mix of a raw feel with a side of brand design; a win-win! Learn more about our capabilities.


#6: Data Analytics

Know how to interpret data and insights enough to explain them to someone who has no clue about social media. This happens a lot with company stakeholders, working cross-functionally, etc. You’ll need to be able to explain what Instagram Shares are, why it’s more important to increase Engagement as opposed to vanity metrics (like Follower count), and beyond. Platforms like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram all have native Insights tools that allow you to keep up with your accounts.


#7: Strategic Thinking

A lot of posting on social media can feel reactionary. Maybe your business just announced a new initiative or product or sale and you have to post about it. And that cycle continues week in and week out.



View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Slate (@slate.teams)

The best social media moments come from true strategic thinking. Try to plan out bigger content ideas in an editorial calendar on a monthly basis, and then hone in on those ideas with more specifics on a weekly basis. That way, you’re planning for the future and staying ahead, while also staying agile and in the moment.


#8: Public Speaking

As we touched on with data analytics, in order to be successful in the role of a social media manager, you have to be comfortable with explaining insights to others. On top of that, there may be times when you’re called upon to be the voice of the brand – in internal meetings or at external events. 

With things like TikTok, Instagram Live, webinars and Twitter Spaces gaining popularity, being able to be that voice, if necessary, will be a bonus! Online audiences in 2022 love when their favorite brands have personality, and they love to see the humans behind the brand. 


#9: Time Management

This one is key to any job role, but especially to social media jobs. There are a ton of moving parts to social media, as we’ve mentioned above. So being organized will be key to ensuring your strategies and campaigns are getting off the ground without a hitch, and remaining successful.


#10: Budgeting & Reporting

This one is key to any job role, but especially to social media jobs. There are a ton of moving parts to social media, as we’ve mentioned above. So being organized will be key to ensuring your strategies and campaigns are getting off the ground without a hitch, and remaining successful.

Working in social media means needing to know a little bit about the paid and organic side of things. Every social network has its own ad platform, and depending on the size of your marketing team, it may be up to you to make budgeting decisions on what content gets promoted and where (and how). 

Time to crack open those Google Sheets!


#11: Curiosity & Adaptibility

One of the easiest ways to win at social media is to just know the latest trends and news relating to social media. Keep your finger on the pulse of how social is changing, because it changes a lot! Seriously, a lot of people fail to do this, and get stuck in trying to utilize tactics of yesteryear. 

That’s why blogs like this one are so important (shameless plug)! We also recommend sites like Social Media Daily and Marketing Brew.


We could go on and on about skills that will aid you in becoming a successful social media manager, but these 10 skills are a super great start! Be sure to follow us on social media to stay up-to-date on Slate’s product offerings, our latest blog posts, and for opportunities to ask us questions. We’d love to chat with you.



Interested in learning more about how Slate can help transform your social media content workflow? Check out case studies from some of our customers like the Los Angeles Lakers and the PGA tour


Stay in the know
Keep up to date with Slate!
Enter your email address to stay in the know with all things Slate; new features, best practices, customer success stories and more!

Ready to get started with Slate?

Request a demo to see why the most innovative and well known 
brands on social trust Slate.