Two Ways to Structure Social Media Teams

Social Media Week 2012 SP

Social Media Strategists at Work

As social media gets broader with more platforms (not just Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, Instgram) the role of social media become more specialized.  Some media companies have developed separate marketing or audience development groups with others have opted to have editors and writers promote their own content.  Here are two ways to structure the team.

One VP/Head who is responsible for overall traffic growth across title(s) and multiple channels (email, partnerships, search, mobile and social).

Two social media strategists who cover all the platforms and evaluate the most effective approach to driving traffic for your titles.  The most popular platforms include Tumblr, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest.  Their responsibilities include collaborating with editorial to ensure that stories get out in a high quality, timely manner.  This usually involves creating and following monthly editorial calendars for social media based on the overall editorial calendar.  Social media strategists will adjust the story according to platform.  Like being more visual on Tumblr vs Twitter for example.  There are many tools that make distributing content very efficient, Hootsuite is very common.

One metrics/reporting person who tracks traffic based on source, page views, number of stories per session.  This person produces weekly/monthly and should be capable of coming up with a few actionable insights. For example, 85% of our retweets come from 10 followers.

Here is an example of editorial leading social media.

One General Manager who is responsible for all aspects of the title, from website functionality to traffic growth and page views.

One Digital editor who determines the content strategy across the title’s website (or .com) and all the content on tablet/mobile plus relevant social media platforms.  There may/may not be a print element to the content strategy, but that’s a different story

Three or four assistant editors who are responsible for creating and distributing content on the website and across social media.  I’ve seen editors who prefer to develop expertise in select platform, there’s often a divide between Pinterest or Twitter for example.  Assistant editors are responsible for tracking and measuring the results.

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