Social Media Marketer Spotlight : Bethany Farr, Social Media Manager Taylor & Francis Group


In the second of the new series Social Media Marketer Spotlight, we interview Bethany Farr. Bethany is currently the Social Media Manager for a large global publisher, Taylor & Francis Group, leading on social strategy with oversight of 35 accounts which is makes life busy but never boring. Previously, she worked for Oxfam GB in communications and digital campaigns which was a great learning experience. 

Outside of her social media life Bethany is involved in a few different charity projects including Big Brothers, Big Sisters based in Oxford which are a great organisation providing long term mentoring opportunities for young people. 


5 in comms and digital campaigns, 2 as a social specialist.


What does your day to day work consist of?

It really varies! My team have oversight of 35 accounts across the business which range from corporate level accounts to subject level community profiles, we are never short of things to do. My role focuses on implementation of the social media strategy, reporting and analysis of the social data, social listening, best practice across the wider marketing department, management of our Salesforce tools and running campaigns. I would say that every day includes a bit of all of that but the variation is what I love about my role. I'm lucky to have two Social Media Executives in my team to share the work load with who are both brilliant. 

What are the challenges you face as a social media marketer?

Our audience is predominately researchers who aren't who most people think of when they think of social media marketing! This means that the way we use platforms and interact online is probably quite different to a great deal of companies but there are some academics out there who are passionate about using social to disseminate their research. It's just about making sure we dedicate time to understanding the best way to reach them and what works for this specialist audience, which should really be the same for anyone in a social media role. 

Are there any social media tools you use to make your job easier?

I use salesforce products; Social Studio and Ad Studio. I really love the social listening functionality in social studio which makes monitoring conversations relevant to our different customer groups, brand mentions and any issues a million times easier. 

There are so many changes in social media, where do you go to get the latest information and stay on top of your game?

A few different places. I read several different daily updates (including from Social Day/Lucy Hall), I get Whatsapp notification from Social Chain and listening to a couple of different podcasts. I have just added the new Twitter podcast to my rotation. Following others in social media roles on LinkedIn has proven useful to see their tips and what they are talking about, there is a really nice online community of social specialists. 

For someone looking to get into a social media role, where would you advise them to start? 

I think often people's idea of what being in a social media role is can be quite different from the reality and can vary a great deal from company to company. I would say start to have a look at some of the free resources, get an understanding of paid, read lots of blogs to make sure you are up to date. Be proactive in reaching out to social specialists online and asking how they got in to their role, most people will be happy to give you some feedback. 

What's been your best social media success story to date (Can be your own or client) and why?

Since joining Taylor & Francis I have been proud of the marketing department for being so adaptable in thinking about social media in a different way and being open to moving away from just posting updates to taking an engagement focused approach. This change was reflected in the fact that we achieved 3x our target for engagements in 2018.

Finally, has been your favourite social media campaign (Big or Small) this year so far and why? 

I'm sorry but I need to talk about Greggs and their vegan sausage roll. Their response to Mr Morgan and their engagement on Twitter was just brilliant, it was something all companies can learn from and made me a little bit jealous of whoever was running that activity.

Where to connect with Bethany:

Lucy Hall