The 411 on Social Media Internships

“What are you going to do with your life after graduation?”; this is a question I have been repeatedly asked since changing my major to strategic communications and my immediate response has always been, “I want to be a social media coordinator for a professional sports team.” However, this answer came despite never actually being in charge of any other social media account besides my own before.

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Fortunately, I was given the opportunity this summer to intern with a professor from Temple’s STHM at his company, AthleteCRUSH and put my passions of social media and sports together. Through this experience, I have gained not only a much better understanding of the sports industry and professional figures within it, but have also learned a lot about myself and my capabilities. To anyone thinking of pursuing an internship or career working with social media, here are three tips I have for you!

1. Great organization skills are key.

During my experience this summer, I was the only person responsible for all the content going up on our three social media platforms in addition to writing articles for the website. Organization was key to my success when trying to get the required number of posts out each day and meet my article deadlines. If you fall into this situation like me, my biggest advice is create a media action plan to make your life 100x easier, that way you can map out specifically what post, goes out what day and at what time all in advance.

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2. Creativity is a must!

Even though many people use social media on a regular basis, it is very easy for them to get bored with an account and even forget about it if there isn’t any eye-catching, fun or different posts. Use social media to your advantage to really showcase your personality and your company or organization’s morals. Put a funny gif out one day to make people laugh, comment on other posts to remind them you still exist, anything! Social media is a constantly evolving and changing world and if you can be creative and think outside-the-box,  you will be very successful working in it!

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3. Do not be afraid to take risks.

This almost goes hand-in-hand with being creative, but also learn to take risks. At some point during your internship or even future job, there will be a point where your social media following ends up plateauing for a little bit and you’re going to wonder what more you can do to increase your followers. In my case, I reached out to athletes from other sports such as the Olympics, American Ninja Warrior and WWE. Taking this risk meant that we could either lose followers because they wouldn’t like our material being posted or we could gain an entirely new audience. In the end, it paid off for us as this new material has become some of our most viewed work and has also gotten us acknowledgment from many of athletes of those sports as well.

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Working in social media can be difficult and sometimes overwhelming, but the experience you will get out of it will help you grow as a communications professional. I hope these tips will be of some help to those of you who wish to pursue social media as a career and to those of you who aren’t 100% sure if social media is something you want to do, I say try it! Even if the experience isn’t for you, don’t be discouraged! I guarantee you will still find the opportunity to be very rewarding and worth it.

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