When I told people that my internship was in Social Media Marketing and Development, their first question was, “So, you write Facebook posts all day?” While I did indeed create posts for Facebook, Twitter, Instagram at Annenberg Center Live, it’s not as superficial as it might sound. Business social media is a science. It’s not the same as updating your status to share with the world what you ate for breakfast, or to thank everyone for their birthday wishes. Social media marketing is a science, and drafting copy for posts is not too different from drafting copy for an ad agency.
The world of marketing today is a new and exciting place thanks to innovations in technology and changes in how we communicate in the modern world. Businesses are constantly looking for young, “hip” people to take over their social media presence and teach them how to use it. That’s the expectation I’d faced in previous internships. However, at Annenberg Center Live, I quickly realized that this internship was different. The Annenberg Center has a certain level of mastery in social media marketing, and it had definitely perfected the “business” aspect of social media. Yet, it was struggling to fulfill the social media adage of the “70/30 rule,” dividing content between business promotion and “fun” content to engage the audience.
That’s where I came in. My days at the Annenberg Center always started with checking in on the various platforms and making sure we were engaging with our audience by liking, following, and favoriting posts and tweets from fans and artists. The rest of the day could really be anything, and I’m grateful I was given a lot of freedom in that regard. I wandered throughout the building taking pictures of the beautiful artwork in the lobby I had never noticed before — despite having been in the building perhaps hundreds of times for classes and shows. I worked on building an Instagram account from the bottom up, researching the best type of content to post for such a unique platform. I interviewed staff members about the incredible history of the Annenberg Center and its three theatres. I researched upcoming performers as well as previous performances and shows. I watched dozens of Ted Talks; I read several medical studies on the health benefits of the arts and countless articles about what was happening in the arts world in Philadelphia and beyond. I learned not only about social media marketing, but also about working in the performing arts and the arts world in general.