Consultancy assessing social media skill sets launches

NEW YORK: Former PepsiCo comms exec Mark Dollins, ex-Dell social media director Richard Binhammer, and digital consultant Shel Holtz have launched a consultancy to help agencies and in-house teams develop their social media skills.

NEW YORK: Former PepsiCo comms exec Mark Dollins, ex-Dell social media director Richard Binhammer, and digital consultant Shel Holtz have launched a consultancy to help agencies and in-house teams develop their social media skills.

The consultancy, called SME Squared, has created a list of 33 social media skill sets across beginner, intermediate, and senior levels. The criteria encompass four categories: content production, project management, leadership, and social-specific skills. Dollins, Binhammer, and Holtz then use data and analytics to measure teams against those criteria and identify gaps in social media talent, tools, or strategy.

The three principals launched the consultancy after finding many digital teams did not get specific enough about what kind of talent and skills were needed for social media programs, Binhammer explained. Social media staffers also need skills in areas such as blogging, podcasting, software, management, and strategy, Holtz said.

“A lot of organizations are hiring based on experience, but if you look at their strategies, there are certain social media skills required that weren't considerations in the hiring process,” Holtz explained.

Dollins, president of North Star Communications Consulting, previously spent 17 years in various communications roles at PepsiCo, most recently as SVP and CCO of Pepsi Beverages.

Binhammer worked as director of social media and community at Dell for seven years before launching his own firm, Binhammer Social Business & Communications.

Holtz has served as principal of Holtz Communication + Technology for the past 17 years.

Both Binhammer Social Business & Communications and Holtz Communication + Technology will continue to operate.

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