Getting Work in the Field of Social Media

By J.R. Atkins, Social Media Consultant

Do you know anyone who actually gets paid to update Facebook, Twitter and write a blog? Mindy Smith does. She works for David Hira, a professional speaker and magic entertainer. How did she find this fun job? That’s right, on Facebook. If you are looking for a job, read on to find out how you can follow in Mindy’s footsteps.

Looking for a “real job”

Though Mindy holds a degree in Sports Marketing from Texas Wesleyan University, like many recent college graduates, after graduation she continued to work at her college job, waiting tables.

In her spare time, Mindy looked for a “real job” on sites like Monster, Career Builder and Yahoo jobs. She also submitted her resumé to company sites even if they weren’t hiring. She mostly searched online, but did place a few phone calls to local businesses as well. Then she saw the posting on Facebook.

Mindy was connected to David Hira on Facebook. An accomplished corporate motivational speaker, David uses magic in his presentations, and belongs to the same magic club as Mindy’s dad—thus the connection. One day David commented that he was so busy he needed a second assistant. Mindy sent David her resumé, and let him know she could help him with marketing. After a conversation where Mindy also promoted her accounting experience and mentioned that she could use social media to market David’s business, the two began their working relationship.

Helping an Entrepreneur Utilize Social Media Marketing

Since David’s business is derived from word of mouth and referrals, social media is a perfect medium to encourage new business and communicate with clients. Though David is in the “over 40 crowd”, he has embraced social media as a communication tool and uses it very effectively. When Mindy began work,  David already had a Facebook and Twitter account, but was mainly communicating with friends and fellow magicians. He wanted Mindy to move his social media usage from the “friends and family” mode into “social media marketing” in order to grow his business and improve customer service.

Blogging

Mindy now helps David to use social media more effectively. She’s encouraged him in writing his blog posts, explaining that his posts need to be from him (not her), in his words, should represent his ideas, and do not have to be fantastic as much as genuine. She’s also let him know he is not alone; she can help. As an example, when David is in a meeting, he can make a few notes on his iPhone and send them to Mindy, who can develop them into an article for the blog, newsletter, or both. This “back and forth” allows David to focus on the message and Mindy to focus on the tools, which include WordPress for the blog.

Facebook

David has a Facebook account for personal use and another one for business, with quite a bit of crossover between the two.  Though David does most of the updating needed, Mindy helps by suggesting content and recommending friends who can help build his fan base. Check out David Hira, Magician and Keynote Speaker.

Twitter

David and Mindy are building a Twitter network of people, including people who know David well and audience members who have heard him speak. When David gets a new follower, Mindy makes sure to respond and see if David should follow the person, too. She also does a lot of searching and listening on Twitter and connecting with meeting and event planners.

To keep organized and on top of content, Mindy uses TweetDeck with the following columns: Motivational Speaker, Inspirational Speaker, Corporate Speaker, Direct Messages, and Mentions.  Mindy and David keep Twitter fresh by posting David’s favorite quotes and “trash talking” with other magicians (which once led to a cook off in Austin due to the boasting between David and friends).

YouTube

Since David is an entertainer and keynote speaker, it’s natural that he would use video for promotion. It’s a wonderful medium for visitors to sample his work. “If you are a meeting planner, you can click on the ‘YouTube’ icon and see a quick video before contacting us about a booking,” says Mindy.

Flickr

Besides posting pictures on FaceBook, Mindy has added a Flickr account. She says, “Flickr has grown as an accepted place to search for pictures of keynote speakers and entertainers. To be effective in marketing, you have to go where your customer is.”

Newsletter

You may not think of a printed newsletter as social media, but the content in David’s newsletter ties in with the blog posts and updates on Facebook and Twitter. His newsletter formula for success consists of feature articles, favorite recipes, business recommendations, and business tips. By referencing the electronic version of the newsletter on the company website, David and Mindy extend the usefulness of the newsletter, and tie in to social media.

A great team

David and Mindy make a great team, blending the experience of an entertainer and speaker with the enthusiasm and social media awareness of a recent college graduate. By hiring youth and matching it with experience, they’ve come up with a winning combination. Whether you’re looking for a job, or looking for a way to leverage social media for your business, you’d do well to follow their example.