As I have announced in our Week-in Preview I am going to take a look at one big party that realizes online marketing in today’s business world – especially in young start-ups.
Website Localization and Social Media are both crucial parts of implementing a successful marketing strategy. Web Localization has been treated by me intensively in my previous posts. Thus, there is social media which offers great opportunities to companies to get rid of middlemen and closely obtain contact to the customer which is perfectly explained in under30ceo.com‘s post “8 reasons why your company needs a social media manager” written by Muthuri Kinyamu.
Social Media Intern or Manager?
According to Muthuri Kinyamu social media is THE future overall strategy for many companies involving sales, HR, customer service, marketing and PR all together. From his viewpoint it takes a lot of effort and skills to perform well in the field of social media. That is why he heavily criticizes companies who realize their social media work by (unpaid) interns. He doubts in sufficient return on investment for social media expenses while making an intern perform the tasks a professionally trained social media manager should do.
However Kinyamu advocates hiring interns in social media who work under a manager and get trained intensively by somebody who has sufficient professional experience in that particular field.
“Managing social media corporate accounts can be overwhelming as it is a 24/7/365 days job! It’s not something an organization should take a break from, you need consistency and monitoring brands and conversations around your campaign and brand touch point”
The logic is simple. Students need experience nowadays to get enough experience to finally gain the necessary experience to finally get hired (finally for a real job). Companies however need cheap labour, additional labour, want to recruit young professionals right after they finish their degree – of course with completely neutral intensions. These are all hypothesis but are (unpaid) internships to be considered as valuable experience or rather as exploitation?
In “Unpaid internships – valuable experience or exploitation” on leedsunicareers.com it is discussed that he labour market is competitive, more than probably ever before. According to this post’s author the benefits of an internships are obvious: Theoretically trained students can get an insight in their career area and acquire skills with the intention to be able to apply them in their future positions. Moreover an internship can constitute a great opportunity for extending a professional network which can increase chances for future internships and jobs. Sometimes a successful internship can also result in a permanent job afterwards.
Deborah Sweeney, CEO of MyCorporation.com however claims in her article on forbes.com that an internship should offer more than no pay, too much work and little contribution/recognition. In her article Sweeney explains that a successful internship program should be based on a mutual and fair exchange and reward every party involved. Sweeney says:
” I personally believe it’s important to offer interns a wage, particularly since so many of them are college students working, and in many cases self-funding, their way through their education”
Unpaid internships could therefore be considered as an option for those who are privileged and can afford following one. Now one could argue that Social Media requires professionals working in this department since it can add a high value to the business. Social media is therefore frequently associated with investment. So for a business willing to succeed in their social media strategies, they should rely on professionally trained managers in social media who could however give training to interns for recruitment purposes. In this case hiring only interns is in fact not the smartest idea as Kinyamu has explain in his post. A social media internship has therefore to be guided by a professional in order to achieve the best benefits for the intern and the company.