Social media has grown substantially over the past few years as a way to communicate and create connections with others. More recently, companies and organizations have come to realize that social media isn’t only for personal use. It has been proven very useful to companies as a marketing tool to increase brand recognition, create more customers, traffic, and conversions, and is a cost-effective way to advertise.
Applied Development (AD) is focused on our social media outreach and how social media can be used to further connections with current and potential clients. This summer, AD hired Social Media & Communications Intern Stephanie Skolka to help further these initiatives. The beginning of the new school year marks the end of Stephanie’s internship with us as she heads into her junior year at University of Maryland. She is pursuing a degree in Communications and Public Relations with a minor in General Business.
As the Social Media & Communications Intern, Stephanie helped further our social media presence on multiple channels. Her primary goal was to generate original content to display AD’s capabilities and advertise our skills to current and potential clients. Stephanie describes her role at AD: “Some of my tasks included creating a content marketing plan for account based marketing and developing and updating a content calendar. It was important to develop these tools to help guide me in creating a mix of re-shared content, along with a strong emphasis on original content. I wrote articles, created info-graphics, found current and relevant news to share or respond to, brainstormed creative ideas for posts, and developed posts to announce company events.” In addition to brainstorming and researching ideas, Stephanie was in charge of the more strategic side of social media marketing. “I was responsible for measuring and tracking our interactions with clients and followers on social media channels to see how many people we would reach with our posts. I decided what type of content to use for each social media channel and the best times to post. I also altered the tone and language of each post depending on what social media channel I was using.” To create relevant content, Stephanie had to understand our short- and long-term goals, and then create a plan of action to achieve each one using social media. “I was responsible for knowing our capabilities and how to market them to clients. I also conducted an audit of our current social media accounts to know what we needed to improve or keep the same. I worked with a team to build strategies that best suited our company’s needs and goals, measured our progress in achieving these goals, and learned what went well and what we needed to improve.”
Looking back at her time at AD, Stephanie describes some of the challenges she faced. “When first starting this internship, I had to learn how to use social media in a professional environment. I have grown up with the development of social media and it’s something I use for my personal life. But when using it for a business, every move is a calculated way of taking steps to achieve your company’s goals. There is a science to using social media for a company. It was a challenge for me to adjust my tone and language use when posting on behalf of a company, rather than for myself.”
This internship helped Stephanie develop new skills and knowledge that have helped her professional growth. “Through my internship with AD, I learned how to use new technologies and software designed for social media marketing such as Hootsuite, Google Alerts, and Google Analytics. I gained experience in developing marketing plans, and how to focus on company goals and create strategies to achieve them. I was able to work collaboratively to develop and implement these plans.”
AD wishes Stephanie the very best in all her endeavors, and we’re sure she has a bright future in Communications and Public Relations.