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The Resume Project: Advertising and Social Media

Whether you want to be a journalist, a marine biologist, a business owner, a banker – or you have no idea yet, there’s something valuable in hearing about the multitude of winding paths. That’s why we launched a series “The Resume Project”  — it’s a Q&A covering how they got here, why they picked it and what you need on your resume to follow suit. Our promise is that there is a tangible lesson in every article… no “follow your dreams and it will all work out” BS allowed. 

Sam: Why did you choose to leave advertising and move into social media?

Rosie: I never thought of it as leaving advertising, I was just ready to move into another part of marketing. But then once I got into it, it was apparent how different the approach needed to be in order to achieve success. So the intention wasn’t to pivot, though now I realise I did.


Sam: Why are they different?

Rosie: Advertising is often about controlling the message. Social is about sharing a story and trusting your fans or audience to turn it into something big. If you’ve built the right brand, it works. If you haven’t, social fails fast.


Sam: Yeah, that’s the thing with social media. You can’t fake engagement.

Rosie: Building a following as a brand from a major corporation or as a small business owner just starting out always boils down to two things: content and community.

Creating interesting content that engages your followers will always result in growing your following. But it can’t always be a one-way street. The strongest social brands are those that engage back with their followers, that follow and comment on their fans’ posts.

Getting people to believe we do more than just “tweet and scroll through Facebook.” We are building a brand, developing a voice, inspiring a community and uniting a diverse landscape of individuals. It’s no small task.


Sam: Even then though, it’s so competitive. I feel like big brands are still at an advantage because they are able to allocate budget to posts to get those initial eyeballs. Whereas, a small business owner needs to be ‘lucky’ to get that traction.

 Rosie: Of course. Big brands will have a manager or a team that targets and allocates social spend. So that’s everything from working with Facebook PMDs (Preferred Marketing Developers), strategizing with Twitter on boosted content and managing a handful of partner relationships that sometimes require budget. But without a strong overall strategy, which is where I come in, those efforts won’t get traction.

The challenge for big brands and corporates is building a human identity online.

Brands realise today that they need an online identity with an original editorial to make their e-commerce experiences or product or brand stickier. That’s their challenge. How do you make a bank, a bread brand or a grocery shop ‘human’? 


Sam: Resume project time… You manage a team of 12. What are you looking for in a graduate social media executive or coordinator?

Rosie: Firstly, do internships. Real ones in offices—not virtual ones. Be a great photographer and an even better writer. Be an Excel expert your customer and your product. If you want to sell makeup, you have to love makeup. You have to “eat your own dog food” in this business.

My tip is to include samples of your social media feed or your brand work in your resume. Use an Indesign template and present your work in a clean, modern, crisp way.

In the interview you need to speak to the following skills:

  • Tell me that you are I want someone that I know will bring new ideas to the team and who will be autonomous with concept ideas within a few months of their hire.
  • Tell me that you are exceptionally organised. Social media is about scheduling and then assessing audience data.
  • Tell me you are a good writer. Show me writing work that you’ve done. This can just be a caption beneath the social media work you display in your
  • Show me that you are able to develop real relationships; with both an audience and other brands in partnerships.
  • Finally, understand the business that we work for. Understand that social media is not just creative pictures and ‘going viral,’ it’s a business vertical within the wider company.

Sam: How does someone ‘show you’ that last point via resume and via interview?

This is just a one liner in your cover letter. Talk about the commercial purpose of the business you are applying for; eg. “I am highly motivated to grow and foster the buying community at XYZ, especially as the company moves further toward a licensing/ecommerce/(whatever the company’s new strategy is) focus.” 

In the interview, talk to me about who the customer is – how we operate – how we reach them – and how social media is driving sales. Social media is about driving revenue and reputation. That’s probably the most valuable line advice I can give… remember to pull it back to both revenue and reputation.

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