Digital media serves as an extended branch of a corporation’s advertising, promotions, marketing, public relations and information technology departments. Individuals working as digital media specialists have highly-specialized skills that focus on new media such as Internet marketing, video production, graphic design and social media. A bachelor’s degree is generally required for entry into the field, although some specialists may gain their skill set on the job. Because digital media specialists generally focus on an individualized field such as television production, social media, graphic design, web design or other disciplines in new media, responsibilities may vary depending on the specific position.
A digital media specialist uses specialized software to create media ranging from email marketing to YouTube videos and even landing pages for purposes of Internet marketing. She might also be responsible for creating an entire suite of marketing collateral such as brochures, websites and business cards for her company. Digital media specialists must come equipped with knowledge of software such as Photoshop, Illustrator, Dreamweaver, Flash and/or InDesign, which are commonly used in the production of graphic design, Internet marketing and social media. Advanced digital media specialists must also have knowledge of Final Cut Pro, Audition, QuarkXPress, iMovie or even animation-based software such as Maya. Some HTML or CSS knowledge is also desirable, as some responsibilities may fall heavily under the Internet and web design categories.
Social Media Responsibilities
Digital media specialists are commonly responsible for a corporation’s social media and online presence which may include the management of Facebook and Twitter, and some niche social media channels such as Pinterest, Reddit or Tumblr. Responsibilities include managing each social media channel by updating the accounts with relevant articles, videos and blogs, maintaining a consistent corporate voice throughout all communications and responding thoughtfully to inquiries or complaints that arise from social media correspondence. Digital media specialists who concentrate on social media will generally create much if not all of the digital marketing materials for a corporation including blogs, videos, web pages, podcasts and/or online bulletins.
Some digital media specialists are managers of departments with others working for them to achieve the overall goals of their respective department. A manager's responsibilities could include leading a team of assistants, writers, editors, web designers, graphic designers or filmmakers. Managers must assess, define, create and implement a well-defined plan for a corporation’s digital strategy including ways to improve multimedia communication centered on information technology and/or marketing and public relations.
Technical and Non-Technical Writing Responsibilities
Most digital media specialists are responsible for much, if not all, of the technical and non-technical writing duties for the corporation. This could include writing press releases, blogs, brochures or articles. Likewise, a digital media specialist must also write technical communication such as manuals, transcripts or even writing in HTML or CSS for the creation of websites or additional web pages.
Ruth Altman writes on business, lifestyle and careers. She holds a Master of Arts degree from Pepperdine University in addition to a bachelor's degree from Harvard University.