The adventures of an analog engineer and digital storyteller who studies emerging networks and their impact on the great game of business.
Oct 6, 2009

Social Media is slowly working its way into the workforce as indicated by an increase in the number of job postings mentioning it. Unfortunately, many of them treat Social Media as some sort of gumball machine–expecting an instant gumball for every penny that’s inserted.

For example, take a look at this job description entitled Social Media Expert Needed. The first time I read through its meaningless requirements, I shook my head. The second time, my blood pressure rose. Instead of risking an aneurysm on a third pass, I decided to have a little fun with it. Here’s a list of its job requirements, accompanied by my translation for each one.

Job Requirement What is really means
Create profiles on multiple networks, participate in networks on behalf of clients with perfect English. Can log in to many Social Media sites and enter the required information without embarrassing our clients.
Create twitter accounts and facebook pages. Can log in to the trendy Social Media sites and enter the required information without embarrassing our clients.
Grow twitter followers with twollow. Twitter followers grow on trees. We use Twollow to water them daily.
Use tweetlater to schedule out 8-10 tweets per day per client. Customers don’t receive enough messages daily, so we help them out by hitting them at least eight more times. Don’t worry about saying anything of value; as long as you keep that Tweetlater queue loaded up, we’ll continue to pay you.
Create facebook pages and have contests and promotions to get fans. Customers love contests and promotions much more than actually learning about our products and services. We’ve found that the more promotions and contests we throw at them, the more they love us!
Develop intersting (sic) and real promotions and contests to faciliate (sic) community participation for client sites. We only run “intersting” and real promotions here. None of those boring and fake ones. Communities love being “faciliated”–especially around promotions! And remember, “perfect English” is the most important skill that we require.
Monitor mentions of client sites on web with google alerts and diffuse any negative comments. We don’t like negative comments so they must be rooted out and diffused. And for heaven’s sake, don’t ever consider sending negative comments back to corporate headquarters. We don’t want to hear ’em!
Be the personality behind the figure head to create a massive list of passionate followers. Don’t mind that man behind the curtain. People love to be deceived–the most gullible of them actually become passionate followers! Just make sure you’re smart enough to cover your digital tracks.
Desired applicant will have at least 5000 twitter followers and over 200 tweets and a facebook fan page with at least 50 fans. We reserve the right to exploit all of the goodwill that you’ve established with your followers. We ARE paying you. Right?
Budget is $5-8 per hour for 10-20 hours per week. Social Media is for amateurs and therefore we’d never consider paying you as a professional. Besides, you’ll only be talking directly with our customers. Like, how important can that be?

Photo credit: Donnaphoto


Filed under: Mini Case Studies


Wow. I can make as much as $8 an hour? That's laughable.
Interstingly (sic + smile), the same job poster is willing to pay $10 – $20 for someone to answer WordPress technical questions. I guess getting a web site running is more valuable to them than an audience of 5,000+ — yikes!

October 6, 2009

Hey… the times they are a changing… it's the front page story of Business Week: “America's High-Tech SWEAT SHOPS” – sadly, they'll find someone ..

Bob Corwin
October 7, 2009

Interesting that the employer wants this “highly-compensated” pro to “diffuse” negative comments rather than address the criticism with the customer/critique. The pay rate reminds me of folks who are advertising for authors to submit “expert articles” and are paying $20 for them.

You've uncovered the fits and starts of a communication channel that few understand; unchartered waters to be sure

David Gordon Schmidt
October 19, 2009

Wow. They trust someone enough to pay them $8/hr to run communication and brand presence! They need your book!

October 22, 2009

I'm pretty sure you could make more flipping burgers, and at least that's an honest living.

October 26, 2009

I'm pretty sure you could make more flipping burgers, and at least that's an honest living.

October 26, 2009

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