10 Social Media Manager Interview Questions + How To Answer Them

Written by Coursera • Updated on

Prepare for your upcoming interview by reviewing questions you may be asked, building interview skills, and familiarizing yourself with current marketing trends.

[Featured Image]:  A recruiter asks a social media manager interview questions on a virtual call.

An upcoming social media manager interview can be an exciting point in your career trajectory, whether you are applying for your first managerial position, changing companies, or switching industries. Social media is a rapidly evolving field, full of opportunities to reach audiences and drive results. 

According to Hootsuite’s 2023 Social Media Trends Report, 83 percent of surveyed marketers feel confident in the return on investment in social media marketing. At the same time, company leaders increasingly require managers and individual contributors to demonstrate social media’s ROI and how different campaigns help companies meet their core objectives [1]. 

With all the career and industry possibilities available, you may be wondering what to expect for your upcoming interview, including the questions you might be asked and how to present your qualifications in your answers. Based on hiring advice from Monster.com and Sprout Social on questions to ask a social media manager, interviewers are designing questions to find out information such as: 

  • The extent of your research into the company 

  • The work ethic, innovations, and value you’ll bring to the company 

  • The diversity and depth of your experience 

  • Your resilience, resourcefulness, and flexibility in different workplace situations

  • Your motivations and inspiration behind pursuing a social media career 

  • Your commitment to excellence 

  • Your track record of success   

Continue reading to explore 10 interview questions for social media managers and how to prepare for your interview experience. 

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10 social media manager interview questions 

The following list of questions draws from online resources that interviewers, as well as social media manager job candidates, use to prepare for interviews. While there are many possible questions an interviewer can ask you, we focus on questions that encourage you to think critically about your social media experience, the field of social media marketing, and your potential as a leader. 

The list combines behavioral questions, which employers ask to learn more about your prior experience, and situational questions, which interviewers ask to estimate how you’ll fare in workplace scenarios you might encounter on the job. For each question, we offer insights into what employers are trying to find out and recommendations on how to form your answer. 

Tip: Use the STAR method—Situation, Task, Action, Result—to formulate answers to behavioral and situational interview questions. 

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1. What would you change about social media and why?

Interviewers ask this to get a sense of the challenges, drawbacks, and areas for improvement that you notice in this field, as well as your ideas for social media’s positive, constructive evolution.   

Prepare your answer by reflecting on your experience with social media, both as a user and as a social media professional. For example, you may have ideas about content or analytics features you want social media platforms to add or how platforms set their terms of service. Connect your observations and ideas to the position you’re applying for.

2. Which social media channels and approaches do you recommend our brand use and why?

Interviewers ask this to get a feel for how much you’ve investigated the company, the insights you’ve taken from your research, and the ideas you already have for the company’s success in terms of social media.   

Prepare your answer by considering the industry that the company is a part of, its product offerings, and brand voice, as well as the observations you’ve made about its social media accounts, including engagement, content strategy, etc. What improvements could be made? What opportunities could be seized? During the interview, ask questions about the company’s social media campaigns and the results they’re getting so that you can tailor your answers accordingly.  

3. Provide an example of how you handled a social media challenge in the past. 

Interviewers ask this to gauge your resilience and ability to turn challenges into successes and learning opportunities.  

Prepare your answer by reflecting on past challenges. These might include posts that got negative feedback from followers or even full-blown social media crises. What actions did you take to mitigate the challenges? What insights did you gather and apply to future social media campaigns and initiatives? 

4. What do you do when a social media marketing campaign doesn’t perform as expected? 

Interviewers ask this to understand how you monitor campaign performance and course correct when needed. 

Prepare your answer by reviewing low-performing campaigns, what went wrong, and what adjustments you made to achieve the desired results. You could also come up with examples of hypothetical campaign mishaps and different measures to correct them. 

5. How have you used other marketing channels to enhance social media campaign performance?

Interviewers ask this to find out how you’ve implemented a multichannel or omnichannel marketing approach or worked cross-functionally with other marketing teams to create engaging customer experiences.  

Prepare your answer by reflecting on your experience with other marketing channels, such as email marketing, content marketing, SEO marketing, display advertising, affiliate marketing, and influencer marketing. How have these campaigns or initiatives worked alongside social media? What were the results? What ideas have you taken from prior experiences on omnichannel best practices? 

6. How would you present our brand and voice on different social media platforms?

Interviewers ask this to find out what you glean from existing public-facing content—including web copy, social media content, and email marketing—and hear your ideas on which platforms would align best with the brand.  

Prepare your answer by reviewing the company’s current online presence and coming up with a few ideas of which platforms to add or focus on. If this question comes up during the interview, consider asking the interviewer to summarize the company’s brand values, voice, and target audience and form your answer accordingly.  

7. How do you stay on top of social media trends?

Interviewers ask this to find out how much industry awareness you have and how you apply that awareness to your strategies within a company. 

Prepare your answer by reflecting on trends you are currently aware of, such as TikTok’s increasing popularity, the use of social listening tools to understand audiences, and the rise in online purchases through social media platforms. In addition, consider subscribing to sources of social media industry news, downloading the latest reports from trusted sources, and preparing your interview question answer accordingly.  

8. What social media tools and strategies do you prefer?  

Interviewers ask this to learn whether your prior experience aligns with the company’s existing social media efforts and ones they want to make going forward. 

Prepare your answer by gathering notes on the software programs, apps, tools, and tactics you prefer and why. For example, you may like using customer relationship management tools like Salesforce and Hubspot because of their integration capabilities and ease of use. You might also find it useful to investigate additional social media tools and prepare talking points on how the company you’re applying to work for might benefit from them. 

9. Can you discuss the importance of leadership on a social media team and what it looks like?

Interviewers ask this to discover your leadership style and experience and how that will translate to managing the company’s social media team, initiatives, and campaigns. 

Prepare your answer by reflecting on the multifaceted nature of social media. At any given moment, a team could be creating, monitoring, analyzing, and optimizing several social media campaigns at once. What are your ideas for motivating a team, keeping all campaigns organized, and achieving business goals? Be sure to ask the interviewer about the social media team’s current structure (i.e., team members, roles, and responsibilities) and form your answer accordingly.  

Read more: 11 Leadership Interview Questions to Help You Prepare

10. Do you have experience or training in project management? 

Interviewers ask this to gauge your preparedness for using project management tools and approaches to oversee the company’s social media efforts. 

Prepare your answer by reviewing different project management tools you have used or want to try. Some examples include Social Pilot, CoSchedule, and Sprout Social. In addition, investigate project management as a broader approach to launching projects and bringing them to completion and prepare to discuss how a social media team can benefit from this discipline. 

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How to prepare for your social media marketing interview

In addition to familiarizing yourself with potential questions you’ll need to answer, be sure to reserve time to prepare for the interview experience. Here are some strategies: 

1. Expect the interviewer to ask some basic introductory questions. 

In addition to the in-depth questions we’ve explored in this article, you’ll need to prepare to answer a few basic questions—often posed at the beginning of an interview. Common questions of this type include: “Tell me about yourself” and “What inspired you to apply for this position?” 

You can think of these questions as “icebreakers,” giving you and the interviewer a chance to build rapport before launching a more pointed discussion of your qualifications. 

Read more: Practice Interview Questions: How to Tell Your Story

2. Build interviewing skills. 

Having some baseline interviewing skills can be the key to feeling confident in a conversation with a potential employer. Practice the following skills before your upcoming social media manager interview and commit to honing them over the whole of your career: 

  • Reflect on the latest social media trends and industry challenges and how you’ll address them specifically in the position you’re applying for.  

  • Research the company, its brand values, mission statement, products and services, leadership, customer base, news, and competitors. 

  • Review the company’s social media presence, brand voice, and engagement on different platforms and in recent campaigns.  

  • Stay calm and relaxed during the conversation while making eye contact and listening carefully to the interviewer. 

Read more: 11 Interviewing Skills to Benefit Your Career

3. Prepare a few questions to ask the interviewer. 

Asking the interviewer questions throughout the conversation can demonstrate your enthusiasm for the role and help you gather the information you need to make the right career decision. It’s a good idea to prepare a few questions in advance and listen carefully during the interview for opportunities to ask qualifying questions about anything you discuss with the interviewer. 

Read more: 30 Career-Focused Questions to Ask in an Interview

4. Know your salary expectations. 

It’s important to have a firm sense of the salary you expect or desire in a new role, even if the subject doesn’t come up during the interview. When you have a numerical range in mind and the rationale behind it, you can walk into an interview confident in your earning potential and qualifications. 

Spend a few minutes researching the salary average for social media manager jobs on various career sites and the factors that can affect it, such as experience, education, and skills. For example, Glassdoor reports that social media managers earn, on average, $52,236 per year. This number includes base pay and additional compensation such as tips, commission, and profit sharing. Someone with a year or less of managerial experience is estimated to make $47,972, while someone with more than 15 years of experience could make $94,985 [2]. 

Read more: How to Negotiate Your Salary: 10 Tips to Earn More

Build job-ready social media skills with Coursera

Taking online courses can be a great way to gear up for an upcoming interview and set yourself up for long-term career success. Check out Coursera’s Professional Certificate programs, offered by industry leaders such as Google and Meta:  

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Google Digital Marketing & E-commerce

This is your path to a career in digital marketing. In this program, you’ll learn in-demand skills that can have you job-ready in less than 6 months. No degree or experience required.

4.8

(9,957 ratings)

265,930 already enrolled

BEGINNER level

Average time: 6 month(s)

Learn at your own pace

Skills you'll build:

Marketing, E-Commerce, display advertising, Email Marketing, Search Engine Optimization (SEO), Customer loyalty, Marketing Analytics, Customer Outreach, Website Structure, Customer Awareness, Google, Search Engine Marketing, Social Listening, Social Media Bidding, Customer Engagement, Social Media Analytics, Social Media Branding, Email Writing, Email list segmentation, Email marketing strategy, Email marketing analytics, Contact management, Digital marketing KPIs, Spreadsheet management, Presenting to stakeholders, Media planning and strategies, Fulfillment and delivery, E-commerce platforms, E-Commerce Strategy, Seasonality, Job preparedness, Customer Relationship Management (CRM), Portfolio preparation, E-commerce store optimization, Building customer loyalty

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Article sources

1

Hootsuite. “Social Media Trends 2023, https://hootsuite.widen.net/s/f2tmbwkljp/.” Accessed January 5, 2023. 

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