Social Media Strategist
The Role

The social media strategist will be an essential member of our newsroom leadership team. Along with the editor and chief and managing editors, they will develop and execute an ambitious social media strategy that ensures our content is reaching a wide audience, particularly in communities historically underserved by mainstream news media. 

The social media strategist will have the opportunity to think creatively and expansively about how we share our work with a focus on accessibility. The successful candidate will be an engaged user of social media platforms including Instagram, Facebook, TikTok, and more, and have an interest in staying up to date on how the newsroom’s target audiences use them. They will experiment with video, audio and other new formats, and develop the voice and tone of all our major social media platforms. They will help set and track targets for reaching the newsroom’s target audiences, and take the lead in proposing data-informed strategy adjustments as needed. 

The social media strategist will report to the Managing Editor, Innovation. This is a player coach role, and will require the social media strategist to both produce their own content and also work closely with reporters and editors to help them translate the initiative’s service and enterprise reporting to social.

The Newsroom

The decision to launch Mirror Indy followed an information needs assessment conducted by the American Journalism Project, which found that many Indiana residents do not feel they have adequate, relevant and accessible information about their communities and the decisions that impact their daily lives.

The innovative 25-person Indianapolis newsroom is filling these critical gaps by hiring experienced journalists with deep ties to Indianapolis communities, reporting on the local issues that residents care most about, including government, housing, jobs, education, health, and local arts and culture, with the highest standards of editorial integrity and independence, and distributed over a variety of platforms designed to broaden storytelling formats and engage a wide range of audiences.

The new organization’s top priority is to earn the trust of the communities we serve through two-way relationships and an innovative community-led reporting model; these efforts will augment newsroom coverage and aid in story development. We feature a community bureau, staffed by people experienced in journalism and community engagement, who are recruiting, training, paying and mentoring residents to collaborate on gathering information for their communities. These community reporting efforts are also driving newsroom coverage, aiding in story development and holding the newsroom accountable for being responsive to community needs.

The newsroom also provides information without barriers. Coverage is distributed across multiple formats and platforms, without paywalls or subscription requirements, to broaden storytelling formats and engage a wide range of audiences, no matter their literacy level, language or Internet access.

Responsibilities & Priorities
  • Work with the editor in chief and managing editors to develop an overall social media strategy that takes a creative and innovative approach to reaching as many Indy residents as possible, especially people who are currently less engaged with local news media
  • Plan, produce and schedule several pieces of social media content each day independently and in collaboration with reporters and editors, ensuring a diverse range of content that helps the initiative grow and sustain its audience, especially in underserved communities
  • Collaborate with and train reporters to produce versions of their stories for social media, helping them use audio, video and other tools to share their reporting with a wide audience
  • Take ownership of understanding social media trends and usage patterns, drawing inspiration from around the news field as well as other consumer-facing industries, and staying on top of algorithm and other platform changes to inform the newsroom’s social media strategy. Stay up-to-date on the latest social media platforms and who is using them
  • Help set social media targets; track performance and progress to goals, including generating regular reports to share insights with the rest of the newsroom.
  • Work with editors to develop social and sharing plans for the initiative’s most ambitious stories and service journalism
  • Develop a voice for the initiative’s social media content that is solutions-focused and inclusive/accessible/approachable
  • Manage the editorial calendar to meet an ambitious publishing schedule on social media

Consider applying if you have some of these skill sets:

  • Demonstrated commitment to local, public service journalism with a track record of producing and/or leading impactful reporting
  • Experience creating social media content that attracts an audience, or managing social media accounts for a news outlet or nonprofit
  • Entrepreneurial spirit—you can thrive in a startup environment where you are expected to learn as you go, think outside the box and build things from scratch
  • Stellar news judgment, editorial skills, and editing and copy editing skills
  • Strong communication and writing skills
  • Ability to work under deadline and prioritize work
  • Adept at problem solving, detail-oriented with excellent organizational skills
  • Experience with and/or strong understanding of building digital audiences
  • Ability to work evenings as needed
  • Interpersonal/communications skills - willing to negotiate and talk through issues in an honest and clear manner
  • Ability to interact effectively with a diverse group of individuals internal and external to the newsroom
  • Team player - help others and is supportive

Compensation and Benefits
  • Full-time role with benefits
  • Salary minimum: $60,000, commensurate with experience

We’re committed to building an inclusive organization that represents the people and communities we serve. We encourage members of traditionally underrepresented communities to apply, including women, people of color, veterans, LGBTQ+ people and people with disabilities. The Indiana Local News Initiative is dedicated to equal employment opportunities for all applicants and employees. We encourage people of all races, colors, national origins, ancestries, creeds, religions, genders, ages, disabilities, veteran status, sexual orientations, and marital statuses to apply.

What to expect in the hiring process

We hope to fill this role as soon as possible, though the hiring process can typically take from a few weeks to a few months. We will do our best to communicate with you about timing expectations throughout the process.Candidates who advance to later rounds of this process can expect several interviews, including with a panel of community members. Semi-finalists will be asked to complete a written assignment designed to help us understand your thinking and approach to the role, and you will be offered an optional prep session to ask any questions that will help you put your best foot forward in this process. We aim to truly get to know you, to help you fully understand the role you’re applying for.

Apply using the form below