Top 20 Social Media Interview Questions [+ Sample Answers]
Feeling nervous about your next job interview in social media? Fret no more and get ready with this list of top social media interview questions. Find out why recruiters ask these questions, and how to answer them, with this post.
Social media interview questions test your knowledge of various platforms and their potential to uplift a brand. So if you want to impress your potential employer, you need the right information and thorough answers for your next job interview.
With this in mind, you’ll find 20 social media interview questions and answers below. You’ll also find out why these interview questions are asked, along with useful background information to inform your response. And if you need help phrasing your answer, you’ll find templates you can modify according to your experience.
- Why do recruiters ask these interview questions?
- Social media interview questions and answers for freshers
- Q&A for experienced candidates
- How to get social media experience
While questions are divided by experience, they’re all loaded with information about social media. Being well-informed helps you prepare for any questions you may not find below. You can also prepare by taking on real social media tasks, either by managing your own accounts, or working with a business in need of help.
Let’s get this post started by finding out:
Why do recruiters ask these interview questions?
In general, social media interview questions test candidates on five things:
- Knowledge of social media concepts and platforms
- Understanding of lead generating strategies
- Technical skills
- Social media marketing and digital marketing know-how
- Behavioral tendencies
Recruiters want to understand how much you know about social media. Do you rarely use any platform? Are you aware of their functions beyond posting a message? Can you find and use social media tools outside of what’s already there?
They also want to know if you’ll be a good fit for the organization. You might get the pass even if you’re a quick learner, if they feel like you can’t adjust to their work environment. On the other hand, they may pick you over others if they think you’ll settle in much faster.
Your best bet at getting rid of all this uncertainty is knowing how to respond. You don’t even need to memorize your exact response. All you need to do is understand how the question works, and have the right information for the best answer you can give.
And so, you can start by reading these questions for fresh graduates, and candidates with no prior formal experience with social media.
Social media interview questions and answers for freshers
Social media in your life
1. What’s your favorite social network?
Your potential employer wants to gauge how much experience you have with social media. They want to know if you understand one platform more than others, if you use it for work or leisure, and if you know how to maximize their potential usage.
Moreover, your interviewer may want to see if you’re honest about how you present yourself on social media. A study conducted in 2017 revealed that 70% of employers screen candidates using social media. Be wary of this, and keep things honest.
I prefer to use Instagram and Tiktok for my daily social interactions. Obviously, I use messaging apps like WhatsApp for group messages and texts, but I use those two networks for their convenience and content.
TikTok’s easy to use, and their FYP—For You Page—lets me find content that I like better than other video sites. Since it’s the popular app right now, there’s just more content for it. And a lot more companies are catching on that it’s not just a fad, and there’s a lot of money that can still be made there.
As for Instagram, I’m on there a lot because my friends still use it. It’s also useful for finding small businesses with cheap or specific products that I want to buy. The hashtag feature’s still useful for discovery too, and the little UI improvements made it easier to scroll through.
2. Do you try to keep up with trends on social media?
Using social media is not the same as keeping up with trends on that network. You have to prove that you’re capable of staying on top of daily changes in the industry. You may even want to go a step further and show you’re capable of identifying what trends will stick, what the competition might try to innovate, and what your potential employer should get a head-start on.
There’s a ton of reliable social media-focused sites out there. I’m an avid reader of their blogs, and I make sure I’m subscribed to the RSS feeds of big social media news sites. On the commute, I listen to podcasts instead, since they also cover the latest developments across all platforms.
I also keep an eye on discovery feeds. Twitter and Instagram do a great job of showing me trends I’m interested in. It’s easy to make lists of popular hashtags and influencers to see what’s going on in topics I’m not so familiar with.
And at the end of the day, I browse the emails I get from Google Alerts. I set up alerts for topics I want breaking news of, so I don’t miss anything worthwhile.
3. How did you resolve the worst experience you had on social media?
Right off the bat, you know that your interviewer wants to evaluate your crisis management skills and social media etiquette. While we advise you to be truthful, try to pick a moment that ended well, and shows your process for addressing unfortunate situations.
I had a disagreement on a friend’s Facebook business page once. An angry customer left a rude comment on their page that was full of misinformation. I corrected their claims, and my reply got them more upset.
I didn’t interact with them after that, as I didn’t want to add more fuel to the fire. Instead, I documented all of their comments for my friend, who managed to get to the bottom of the customer’s complaints. I also apologized to my friend for taking matters into my own hands.
Experience and background
1. What do you like about our social media presence? And what improvements would you suggest?
You’re essentially being asked if you researched the business before the interview. As a general rule for job interviews, you should research your potential employer so you’re not caught off guard by these types of questions.
Look up their website and, more importantly, their social media profiles. Check which platforms they’re on, where they’re active, and what they post. This helps you figure out their social media voice, reputation, and relationship with their audience.
I like this business’ informal, but reliable voice. Even if you talk to your audience casually, your social media team responds thoroughly and speaks with authority. I particularly like how effective your team is at conflict resolution; they’re never baited past an initial reply to take it to DMs, and complaints usually don’t escalate after the initial response.
As for suggestions, I’ve noticed that you’re more interactive on Twitter and Facebook. There’s not a lot of interaction on Instagram and LinkedIn, even if you get a decent amount of reactions there. Your team can interact with customers the same way they do on Twitter on those sites. You can try to post more interactive content, like daily tips, fun facts, or open-ended questions, to drive engagement up.
2. How can we create a giveaway campaign on Instagram using likes and comments?
Not every platform allows giveaways, and every network has its own rule about promos. Knowing the terms of service for every platform, including rules for clickbait posts, will save an unwitting business from suspensions and bans.
According to Instagram rules, you can use likes and shares for contests. But you have to use the correct hashtags, outline official rules, terms and eligibility requirements, start and end dates and times, state that it’s not sponsored by Instagram, and follow any state regulations about the promo or prizes offered.
Since your business offers body therapy treatments, perhaps you can run a like-and-tag campaign. You can offer a free full-body treatment at any of your branches to a randomized customer who likes your main promo post and tags a friend. Then, you can run posts every day until the end date to keep the engagement up.
3. What social media tools are you familiar with?
Your interviewer wants to know if you’ve ever used social media management tools, and if you need training in specific applications. Something to note: knowledge of in-platform tools, such as Meta Business Suite for Facebook and Instagram, counts.
I’ve used Hootsuite to manage all of my social media accounts since college. It’s free, and I don’t have to hop around websites to manage my feeds. I’ve explored other platforms, like TweetDeck and Buffer, but I feel most comfortable with this program.
4. Define social media marketing and how it helps a brand.
This is a simple test on what you know about a key component in most social media jobs. The one-liner for this is: Social media marketing is a type of marketing strategy that uses social platforms to market a business’ products or services. It has five core principles:
- Research & strategy
- Content planning & scheduling
- Engagement & response
- Analytics & reporting
- Advertising & awareness
This type of marketing is great for nurturing a brand’s relationship with their audience. Through social ads, word-of-mouth marketing, and relevant content, it’s also a great way to reach new audience members that fit a brand’s user profile.
Social media marketing puts planned content in front of your target audience for a specific purpose. What that does varies from changing your public image, directing more traffic to your website, to creating awareness for your products and services, and more.
You don’t really need to put any money into social media marketing either, even if social ads are cheaper than traditional advertising. Plus, it’s a surefire way of creating more exposure for your business. Everyone is on social media now, so there’s a higher chance that someone who needs what you offer finds your business at the right time.
And it’s not a pure sales tool either. You’re creating a loyal audience by offering them content that they find interesting, informative, or aspirational without clicking away from the platform—or by linking them to a trustworthy site, preferably, yours.
In summary, social media marketing helps promote brands, increase traffic and sales, unearth valuable audience data, and enhance customer experiences.
5. Our business has Facebook, LinkedIn, and Youtube accounts. Should we add more?
The real answer is: it depends. If the organization is B2B, they don’t need to be present on as many networks as a B2C one. Look up the business beforehand so you know which platforms they can benefit from.
Since you’re a law firm that specializes in corporate affairs, I think these three platforms are good enough. LinkedIn is a must to connect with professionals who may need your services. Your Youtube videos on corporate law are very popular, and your Shorts perform on the same level.
And you’ve mentioned earlier that more of your partners are on Facebook than other sites, so it’s better to encourage them to become more active there than force them to build a presence on other platforms.
6. What skills do you think you need to develop for this role?
You need to develop self-awareness for this one. You’re being asked to evaluate what skills you already have, what needs improvement, and what you’re lacking. Don’t be afraid to tell the truth—it’s better to get hired and trained, than land the job and have nothing to show for it.
I don’t have much experience using social media management tools. I’m a frequent user of social media, but I’ve never had a need to use any of their advanced features. But I’m confident that I can learn to use these tools quickly, since I’m already familiar with the networks they manage.
7. Is there such a thing as a “best time” to post on social media?
Another question that depends on a lot of variables. There are articles that recommend times based on aggregate data, and for the most part, this information is reliable. But you should still take your audience’s time zone and most active times in account, to ensure that your content is delivered and noticed in a timely manner.
It depends on when your audience is most active. Sites might recommend Tuesdays to Thursdays from 9 to 10 AM, but if your accounts have low engagement during those times, then you should schedule your posts at different times.
Most social media networks also have a function that recommends the best times to post, based on audience data. Overall, I recommend mixing these strategies up rather than sticking to one way of scheduling posts.
8. Are SEO and SEM important to social media?
SEO and social media are connected. While social media has no direct influence on page rankings, social signals or page activity can drive traffic to the main site, and even appear on the SERP previously occupied by the business.
These page activities vary. Linking to a post on the main site, having content shared or reposted, and maintaining an active page tell search engines that a site is trustworthy, which can bump a website’s ranking up.
A good social media presence indirectly helps your website’s SERP results. Think about it: if a teaser you post on Twitter gets a lot of engagement, more people click through to the full post on your site, it gets shared and backlinked by other sites, and you get a lot more organic traffic than you would’ve without promoting it on social media. All that activity sends signals to Google and other search engines that your content is relevant for the keywords you’re targeting.
1.How do you tell a colleague that the campaign they’re running isn’t performing well?
Even if your technical skills are head and shoulders above the rest, it counts for nothing if you’re constantly ruffling feathers over it. Recruiters want to know if you can give detailed, quality feedback while remaining tactful and professional.
I’d ask my co-worker if we could discuss their campaign over lunch or during our spare time at work. I wouldn’t open with my observations; rather, I’d want to make sure that it’s just us, so they can have some privacy if they react strongly to my comments.
Of course, I’d avoid using accusatory language. My criticism should be actionable and matter-of-factly. I know I can be straightforward without being condescending or hurtful to my colleagues.
2. Your co-worker just made a major faux pas while interacting with your audience. How do you resolve this brand reputation crisis, and how will you confront your co-worker?
Handling negative comments and brand reputation crises well is vital to social media teams. But in this question, your interviewer wants to know how you’d handle this crisis, and your team. Think carefully about how you’d handle both as audience sentiment and team morale are important to your job.
First, I need to address the crisis. If it’s with a customer, I’dmessage them privately if their complaint is legitimate. For any ill-advised comment or post, the offending content must be removed, and a sincere apology should follow. We can’t ever get defensive, unless it’s reasonable to defend our brand.
What our team does on social media affects public perception of the business. As part of this team, I have to ensure that we’re transparent about our response to any crisis. I’ll also let the team know that this is a learning experience, and that we resolved it quickly, and with accountability.
As for my co-worker, I’d talk to them after we’ve resolved the crisis. It’s not great for the team if we add tension to the room with a confrontation. Unless they’ve done something against our guidelines, or worse, my colleague just needs to realize the gravity of their situation, and perhaps undergo some retraining.
3. What kind of customer feedback should we respond to?
Negative feedback’s often seen as more valuable than positive feedback because it presents a team with problems they can solve, or improve on. However, not all negative comments are worth responding to, or have any value. Knowing which complaints are legitimate is valuable for a social media specialist.
At the same time, don’t forget to thank your audience! Engaging with them, and with new users, to help foster the kind of loyalty that keeps them coming back.
If we receive any complaints, it’s on me to analyze them. A comment that may seem purely negative might actually have some value if you take the time to read it. On the flip side, a long rant might just be that—something written by someone looking for attention.
Of course, I can’t spend all my time reading comments. I have to look for patterns to see if the negative sentiment’s repeated. The team can address it in one go.
If it’s a common problem, we can make a linkable, easy-to-access FAQ to cut down on the queries. And if it’s just attention-seeking, sealioning, and other forms of harassment, we won’t need to reply—we just need to remove these comments and block, if the account repeats the action.
4. How important is it to have good communication skills in the workplace, especially when you work in social media?
Anyone working in social media should rate a 10 in communication. Communication figures into how you develop strategies, work with your team, and engage with customers.
It’s in the name: social. No one on the team needs to be an extrovert, or a social butterfly, but we all need to be capable of effective communication. We have to be able to speak or write clearly and concisely, so we can deliver the right message to our audience.
Now, let’s move on to social media interview questions that require prior work experience, or knowledge of social media and social media marketing.
Q&A for experienced candidates
Note that if you’re interviewing for a social media manager position, you’ll find this post useful. It goes into detail about what the role is for, and what skills will get you hired. Even if you’re not going for this role, you can still use the templates and tools listed there in your work.
Without further ado, here are social media interview questions for candidates with previous work experience.
Experience and background
1. Why are you switching careers now? Why social media?
While you should tell the truth, carefully phrase your response. You should reassure your interviewer that you’re moving on for positive reasons, such as advancing your career, taking on a new challenge, growing what you know, and so on.
Try not to center your reasons on the negatives, such as low pay, bad management, or a stagnant career ladder. Additionally, if you’re moving on due to an external reason, avoid making it sound like that’s the main or only reason for your decision. Most of all, don’t share proprietary information that might get you into trouble, or make you appear unreliable.
I left my last job because I felt a draw to social media’s potential. Working with the social media team in my last job gave me a look at what they do, and what their work did for our reputation. I found everything fascinating, and seeing immediate and long-term results form their work felt great.
I’m enthusiastic about this role because it’s exactly what I want to do. I took courses to prepare for this role. I also handled a business’ social media accounts during an apprenticeship, and with my pre-existing skills, I know I’ll be of great service to this business as well.
2. Walk me through your process of explaining a social media campaign to a C-level executive who doesn’t use social media.
C-suite executives may not always know the direct effect of social media to a business. In this case, you need to deliver information clearly and concisely. This way, executives understand the importance of your work, and how to support your team for better results.
Before going to the technical details, I think this presentation should start by showing the benefits of the team’s last big social media campaign. There should be concrete proof that this new campaign will produce bigger results than the last one.
We can show them the process of how this campaign can act like a social media marketing funnel. This campaign can give us more leads, conversions, and sales—KPIs that they can understand. And we can always show that our business will appear more authoritative with this campaign.
Questions for candidates with social media experience
1. Which social media platform will you focus on to grow our business?
The answer depends on three things: business goals, demographic, and industry.
For example, if a business wants to reach an 18-24 demographic, Instagram, Snapchat, and Tiktok are their best bets. Should they want a shopping-centric user base, Pinterest is a strong choice. And if they want organic engagement with a specific community, contributing to Reddit communities is a must.
You should create or evaluate a business’ user profile based on these 3 categories for a sure answer.
For me, creating a loyal audience of 25- to 34-year-olds starts with the platform. You want a platform with that age range that supports frequent interactions between business and customers. Based on my research, that platform is Twitter.
Twitter attracts the most consumers for that range, and it’s easier to engage directly with them through that platform. And since your brand wants to increase their US-based audience, Twitter’s the way to go, because the US is its biggest audience.
Since Twitter users spend a lot of time on the site, I’d keep a keen eye on our mentions for any customer feedback, and openings for good interactions. I’d also schedule tweets on times when our audience is most active. As for the content, I’ll stick with positive brand news, links to useful blog posts, memes, promo codes, and media that our users interact with the most.
2. How do you create “viral” content?
A firm grasp of pop culture and social media trends, strong creativity, and knowledge of which influencers and demographics to target can lead to content that’s highly shareable.
No one can promise virality, but I can assure you that I can make content that hooks your audience. Viral content is typically short, visually appealing, and has a catchy element that makes viewers want to replicate it. I’ll make sure the first 20 seconds—or less—is shareworthy.
I’d schedule the release during the periods when our audience is most active. If we have influencers or affiliates we can share the video with, I’d go for it, to increase distribution and visibility.
3. What are your KPIs for a successful social media campaign?
Here are a few KPIs that are easily trackable and have a visible effect on your campaign:
- Link clicks
The most important KPIs of a campaign depend on what the campaign’s goals are. But in general, the more numbers we have, the better it is. Of course, those numbers have to be positive. If a campaign has great reach for all the wrong reasons, it’s a big liability instead of a boon.
For example, if we’re running a series of posts to raise awareness for a new product, we want as many eyeballs on it as possible. High total reach, share of voice, subscribers, and shares are great, and we can compare that data set to what we get through organic search and other means of acquisition.
How to get social media experience
There’s no better way to answer social media interview questions than by gaining practical experience. Start by experimenting with your social media accounts. It’s free, you don’t have to coordinate with anyone but yourself, and you can experiment as freely as you’d like.
You can pair this experience with courses. Courses can teach you in-depth knowledge, on top of rewarding your efforts with certification. A certificate in social media marketing can be the boost you need in your next job hunt.
Another option is to find a business that needs your help, and is willing to guide you through the basics of social media marketing. Instead of an internship, where you might not learn anything related to social media, why not try an apprenticeship? You can develop relevant skills, and learn what’s needed in real social media roles and teams.
Need more help with your job interview or hunt? Read these posts:
- 21 Digital Marketing Interview Questions in 2022
- Entry-level Digital Marketing Cover Letter [+Template]
- Tell Me About a Time You Made a Mistake [Examples + Tips]
- Describe Yourself in an Interview: Guide, Adjectives & Tips
- Interview Anxiety: How to Calm Nerves Before an Interview
- Work Readiness and You: Why You Need It, and How to Improve It
Want other tips to get you ready for social media marketing—or other forms of marketing? Check these posts out:
Five years in journalism, two in proofreading, and eight in freelance ghostwriting. Creating content that's entertaining, informative, and actionable shapes my writing. When not scrutinizing my copy, I'm likely watching hockey.
Top Marketing Webinars for Digital Marketers in 2023
By attending these webinars, you will have the opportunity to learn from industry leaders, gain insider knowledge, and stay ahead of the competition.
9 Types of Digital Marketing to Choose From in 2023
Digital marketing is a dynamic field that offers diverse career opportunities. From search engine optimization to social media marketing, there are many specializations to explore. Whether you're just starting out or looking to switch careers, this guide will help you find your ideal digital marketing niche.
Subscribe to our newsletter for digital marketing resources
Become a better marketer with our digital marketing resources and tips shared weekly in your inbox.
Get started with Acadium
Build your marketing career for free or find marketing talent on any budget — fully remote.