Marketing Salaries: How Much Does a Social Media Manager Make?

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  • In August 2022, the average income for social media managers was $53,060.
  • Social media manager pay varies based on factors like industry and experience.
  • Professionals can work in an agency or as a freelancer.

From cat videos to viral tweets, social media managers are in charge of connecting with audiences through social media.

At the core, social media managers are digital marketers who help businesses reach their audience through various platforms. They work in a wide array of settings and may have anything from a high school diploma to a Ph.D., though most hold a bachelor's or master's degree.

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Regardless of what industry you want to go into, social media marketing is a useful skill for a variety of careers. Marketers also have a lot of professional flexibility, and their abilities are in high demand.

What Is the Average Social Media Manager Salary?

According to Payscale data from August 2022, the average salary for social media managers is $53,060. However, many social media marketers focus on a certain type or aspect of the industry, so there is a lot of variation. Their salary is often dependent on experience, education level, and employer. Specialized training or unique experience in the industry can help professionals negotiate higher salaries.

Highest-Paying Social Media Management Jobs

High-paying variations of this job generally require specialization or experience. Here are some common titles and salaries.

Highest-Paying Social Media Management Jobs
Social Media Manager Job Average or Median Annual Salary
Social Media Senior Strategy Manager $125,040
Social Media Campaign Manager $63,120
Community Manager $63,120
Social Media Content Manager $48,610
Social Media Specialist $47,030

Data from Payscale, August 2022

How Much Social Media Managers Make in Your State

Since social media managers often work remotely, the state they live in isn't particularly important. However, there are still income trends, so location is worth considering. For example, marketers often make more in states with a higher cost of living, like New York.

Median Salary for Social Media Managers by State (2022)

Data sourced from ZipRecuiter

The Highest-Paying States for Social Media Managers (by Median Salary, 2022)
Social Media Manager Public Relations Manager Marketing Manager Entry Level Editor
  1. New York
  2. Washington
  3. Massachusetts
  1. Arkansas
  2. New York
  3. Washington
  1. Arizona
  2. Montana
  3. Wyoming
  1. Arizona
  2. Montana
  3. Wyoming

Data sourced from ZipRecuiter

Editor's note: Some of the salary numbers above may be based on relatively small samples, and potential salaries could vary widely depending on the employer.

Job Growth for Social Media Managers

With the growth of social media, the demand for social media managers and related careers is increasing. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), job demand for marketing managers is projected to increase by 10% from 2020-2030.

Related fields are also projected to grow, but at a slightly slower pace. The BLS projects that jobs for public relations managers will grow by 9% from 2020-2030. Since high growth is predicted to continue, this is a reasonable field for people looking to change careers or join the workforce after college.

What Marketing Field Pays the Most?

According to the BLS, marketing managers made the most in the field in 2021, with a median salary of $135,030. Additionally, the need for this marketing career is on the rise. The BLS projects a 10% growth in the demand for marketing managers from 2020-2030, making it feasible to pursue a career in this field.

Recent college graduates can also explore this career since it only requires a bachelor's degree. However, most marketing managers hold an advanced degree or several years of experience in the field. Experience level also influences earning potential.

According to BLS data from May 2021, the top-paying industries for this career are:

  • Technical services
  • Company management
  • Finance
  • Manufacturing
  • Wholesale

More Education Leads to a Higher Social Media Manager Salary

Bachelor's in Marketing Salary

While not necessarily required, a bachelor's in marketing is the most common way to become a social media manager. Right after college, graduates can find a variety of marketing positions in sectors like content creation or digital advertising.

Public Relations Manager

A public relations manager is in charge of establishing and maintaining a company's brand. While they might go to press conferences and oversee press releases and social media content. They also develop a relationship with key influencers and journalists.

Average Salary
$72,420


Market Research Analyst

Market research analysts look at trends and predict market conditions. They might also gather poll information or other data on consumers or competition. They are key to helping businesses plan strategically for the future.

Median Salary
$63,920


Marketing Manager

Marketing managers evaluate data about market trends and consumer needs to develop an effective marketing plan. They often produce and oversee everything from paid advertisements to social media engagement.

Median Salary
$135,030


Master's in Marketing Salary

For most social media marketers, a master's degree in digital marketing is unnecessary. However, it can allow you to increase your earning potential or specialize in a niche. It also makes you more competitive for high-level jobs.

Senior Social Media Strategy Manager

Senior social media strategists are in charge of conducting and interpreting market reports and making a marketing plan accordingly. They also research and coordinate with influencers and other third parties to create cohesive marketing campaigns.

Average Salary
$125,040


Art Director

Art directors are in charge of creating graphics for anything from magazines to social media posts. They represent brands visually and create artistic designs that connect with their audience.

Median Salary
$100,890


Sales Manager

Marketing and sales have the same ultimate goal: to increase profits. Because their position deals directly with the business's success, they have the potential to earn a lot, especially from commission.

Median Salary
$127,490


Doctorate or Ph.D. in Marketing Salary

According to Payscale, the average salary for all careers with a marketing Ph.D. is $77,000. An advanced degree might be for you if you enjoy research and academia. A Ph.D. in marketing also allows people to become highly specialized in a certain kind of marketing.

Senior Product Manager

Lead product managers are in charge of a product throughout its entire lifecycle. They usually do everything from coordinating with engineers to design the product to creating a marketing strategy to sell the product. Since the success of a product can make or break a company, this position is well-paid but can also be stressful.

Average Salary
$128,600


Marketing Professor

Professors teach the next generation of marketing professionals. They often focus on a specific topic, like social media or video marketing, and teach their specialty and related subjects. They also conduct research and publish scholarly articles.

Salary
$82,420


Marketing Director

While marketing directors can have various education levels, ones with a doctorate in marketing are usually at large companies or oversee large teams. They develop and oversee all aspects of a marketing plan and implementation.

Average Salary
$92,610

Frequently Asked Questions About Social Media Management Salaries

What state pays social media managers the most?

New York pays social media managers the most. Washington and Massachusetts are also good options for people wanting to pursue this career path. However, it is common for people in this career to work remotely with companies in other states or countries. So, someone could live in Idaho while working with a company in New York. Because of that, it is hard to say that social media managers living in one state consistently make more than others.

Additionally, states that pay the most also often have the highest cost of living. For example, the BLS reports that the average annual expenditures for a New York resident totaled $75,275 in 2019-2020, while in Florida, this number was just $53,147.

Can I become a social media manager without a degree?

Yes, you can become a social media manager without a degree, but a bachelor's degree is the minimum requirement for most positions. Candidates with many years of experience can secure marketing jobs without a formal degree, but postsecondary education makes applicants more competitive. Many social media managers have a bachelor's degree in marketing, communications, or a related area.

To increase your odds of getting a good start as a social media marketer without pursuing a degree, you can use online courses and certifications. You can also learn digital marketing skills from some coding bootcamps.

How much can I make as a social media manager?

According to Payscale, social media managers make an average of $53,060 per year. The top 1% of social media managers make $99,000 each year.

How much a social media manager makes depends mostly on experience. Potential employers and freelance clients are especially interested in seeing portfolios of successful social media campaigns or related experience. So, having a lot of experience and a good portfolio is key.

How and where digital marketers work also impacts their salaries. For example, freelancer marketers might make more money but usually don't receive benefits.

What does a social media manager do?

Social media managers are in charge of social media marketing (SMM). They often work with an agency or directly with businesses. They might focus their efforts on a single platform, like TikTok, or work across multiple platforms.

Social media managers create organic marketing or paid ads and often work with clients to identify specific goals and growth metrics. Regardless of how and where they work, their end goal is to make money for their clients either directly or indirectly by engaging with audiences across social media platforms.

What is social media marketing?

Social media marketing is using platforms like Facebook and Instagram to help businesses connect with their audience. Different companies or organizations may have many different goals like establishing a recognizable brand, increasing website traffic, or generating new sales leads.

Marketing goals are often measurable metrics like earning more page likes or increasing the number of comments each post gets. Social media marketers often consider their clients' unique goals and develop a specific action plan or content calendar to reach those objectives.

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