How Much Do Social Media Managers Make

Back in 2011, an article on Business Insider said that social media managers tweet and surf Facebook all day. It seemed to be a perfect job where you just have to use social media all day. Today, this isn’t the case anymore. The job and life of a social media manager have changed a lot.

It has transformed into a strategic job over the years. It involves planning, analytics, content creation and management, team management, and much more. Here is an interesting infographic that shows how a social media manager spends an average day at work.

The job of a social media manager has become more challenging and hectic. At the same time, it is more rewarding. An average social media manager earns a lot more today than he/she used to earn 10 years back. Of course, you won’t just get paid for using social media, it isn’t 2011.

Social Media Managers Salary

So how much do social media managers make?

The salary of a social media manager depends on several factors but the experience is at the top of the list. The average salary varies a lot depending on the career-level of the social media manager. An entry-level manager will be paid less as compared to a mid-career or an experienced manager.


The average salary of a social media manager in the US, according to Indeed, is $44,807 per year. It, however, varies from city to city throughout the United States. Some states have a significantly high average social media manager salary.

Here is a list of the top US cities with highest average salaries:

  1. Boston – $59,642
  2. New York – $57,764
  3. Costa Mesa – $52,433
  4. Seattle – $51,479
  5. Los Angeles – $50,456
highest paying cities in US for social media managers


According to PayScale, the average social media salary in the United States is $51,423 per year. The lowest salary is $35K while the highest reported salary is $79K:

social media manager average salary

Social media managers aren’t just paid a base salary rather they earn bonuses, profit-sharing, and commission too. The exact breakdown varies from company to company but based on PayScale’s data from 3,608 individuals, a small portion of managers were getting profit-sharing and commission from their employers.

Here is an overview of the average social media manager salary based on experience:

social media manager salary chart
  • Entry-level social media managers earn having less than a year of experience earn an average salary under $40K a year
  • Early-career social media manager having experience between 1-4 years earns $49K per year
  • Mid-career social media manager having 5-9 years experience earns $61K per year
  • Experienced social media managers who have 10-19 years of experience earn $68K per year
  • Late career social media managers who have 20+ years of experience make $59K a year

This bifurcation clearly shows how salary varies as you gain experience and get better at social media marketing.


According to Glassdoor, the average social media manager salary in the United States is $50,473 per year. It can go as low as $35K per year and as high as $72K+ per year depending on experience and other factors:

average social media salary

Based on the data from these three platforms, the average social media manager salary in the United States is between $44K-$51K per year. 

The salary is variable and depends on several factors including experience, city, state, company, and others. Some companies pay less irrespective of your experience while others pay more irrespective of the candidate’s experience.

How to Make More as a Social Media Manager

If you are interested in increasing your salary as a social media manager and want to make more than other social media managers who are at the same career level, follow these tips:

1. Acquire Right Skills

There are certain skills that can give you an instant raise in salary. lists top skills and their association with a social media manager’s salary:

top social media manager skills

Social listening is the top skill that can increase your salary by a whopping 23.70%. There are 81 open jobs that require social listening skills. This is a great opportunity. Similarly, Adobe Analytics can give you a quick raise of 53.45% but it has only 2 open jobs.

Here is a list of the top skills that can help you increase your salary:

  1. Adobe Analytics
  2. Media buying
  3. Computer literacy
  4. Budgeting
  5. Creative writing
  6. Windows

What you need to do is look for courses, training, and certifications for these skills. Target one skill at a time that is in high demand. Get its certification. A certificate is the best way to tell an employer you actually possess a certain skill. Nobody will believe you otherwise.

2. Target Right Companies

Social media manager salaries vary from state to state in the United States. No, you don’t have to relocate to a high-paying state or city rather target companies in the right states.

For example, Boston is the highest paying city in the US. What you need to do is target companies in Boston that are looking for social media managers instead of your home city. If you get a nice offer, relocate.

Here is an overview of how social media manager salaries fluctuate throughout the US:

social media manager salary in US states

Targeting the right companies based on their location is the best approach to get paid more as a social media manager. You can apply a filter in any job portal and get open positions in your desired state or city.

3. Get Relevant Degree

If you don’t have a bachelor’s degree yet, get one today in one of the following three fields:

  1. Advertising
  2. Communication
  3. Marketing
top college degrees for social media managers

If you already have a bachelor’s degree, consider getting an online master’s degree in one of these fields. All the leading US universities offer online master’s programs (both part-time and full-time).

A part-time online degree is your best bet. You don’t have to leave your current job (which means you’ll keep getting experience) and you’ll get a relevant degree that will give you a boost in your salary.

What’s better?

Final Thoughts

How much do social media managers make is an open-ended question with no exact figure. In fact, nobody can give you an exact figure. The average salary is in the range of $45K and $51K per year. The actual salary depends on numerous factors such as experience, skillset, location, company, degree, etc.

If you want to get paid more as a social media manager, focus on your experience, skillset, and company’s location. You’ll be able to earn more than the average salary, trust me.

Featured Image: Pexels

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