My Media Day: Nicky Glenn, social media manager, SNS Group

NICKY Glenn is social media manager at Glasgow-based picture and video agency, SNS Group.

He submitted this on Tuesday, April 1.

What exactly is it you do?

At the moment I’m like a digital builder, building things online instead of with bricks. At SNS, we’re currently in the process of increasing our general presence, online. With the digital world being such an important part of media these days we decided it was time to really jump ‘onboard the train’ and that’s where I come in.

Once we settle on the various social media platforms we’d like to operate on it will be my job to (a) create our pages/accounts before (b) taking the lead on the control of each platform. It’s up to me to ensure that relevant and exciting content is produced and shared over the correct channels and with the correct people. This will include images, video content, blogs and more. I’m also heavily involved in the creation of policies relating to our online presence and ensuring staff at SNS know everything they need to know about this new world.

Our new strategies are very much in their infancy, a work in progress, but there are exciting times ahead for me and for SNS Group.  If I’m asked this same question a year from now, when our foundations are established, I’m sure my answer will be considerably different.

What did your working day today or yesterday comprise?

Yesterday was a very segmented day for me. It was also my first day back from a spell of annual leave so, like everyone else in this industry I’m sure, I had a lot of emails! 871 to be exact. I do read my emails all day, every day, even when on holiday, but I still had mountains to get through.

Once I got beyond my inbox, a fair portion of my day yesterday was spent with the company MD and a few of our heads of departments, in the boardroom. With the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games creeping ever closer we have regular ops meetings.

Yesterday’s meeting was a combination of looking at how we’d approach things in the build-up to the Games before moving onto a more in-depth look at how we aim to tackle things when the Games kick off on July 23. There are so many logistical things to look at here, with the clock slowly ticking, so these are pretty heavy-duty meetings. That said, we’ve got to make the most of the planning time we have left, so we all appreciate the importance of getting the relevant bodies together.

Once clear of the 2014 meeting it was onto afternoon conference for me. Again this daily catch-up is attended by someone from each department. We use these to firstly go over the events of the current day, highlighting the positives and the (occasional) negatives. We then discuss in detail our plans for the following day, ensuring all jobs, be it photography, design or video, are set up properly and have all the necessary briefs available for our ‘guys on the road’. These conferences also allow each department the opportunity to know the plans of the other departments which, at times, is essential. With two of these conferences a day, in the AM then the PM, it really helps us stay ahead of the game.

The final few hours of my day saw me back on the picture desk for an evening. We had a commissioned job that required a live editor, so I took the reins on this. I was the middle-man between our photographer at the job and the client awaiting images. Each time I received a batch, they were checked over, retouched if needed, and filed in a client-specific gallery where they immediately become available for download. Any specific requests went through me to ensure the photographer was continuously fed the appropriate information to complete the job to a high standard. This job, like all of our commissioned work, will be finished with a follow-up call to the client in the next day or so. These calls are simply to ensure the brief was met and the client is happy. It also allows the clients to give us a bit of feedback, if needed.

Just before leaving for the night I sent an overnight memo to the entire office, passing on any new and/or relevant information I’d become aware of since our afternoon conference. This keeps everyone up to speed and is a very handy email to read before starting work the next day.

Not the most glamorous of days on my return, but a productive one nonetheless!

How different or similar is your average working day to when you started?

In a nutshell, massively different!

Coming from an image background, having spent more than eight years on the SNS picture desk, four of those as deputy editor, the change in role means my days are completely different. I haven’t left that behind completely, though. I’ve always loved the cut and thrust of dealing with jobs in real-time. Working to deadlines to keep the Press happy, clients happy (and my boss happy), is something I wasn’t ready to move away from altogether. I can still be found overseeing the image output from the many many jobs our photographers complete in a day, as well as the output of our video department, but my involvement on these things is now far less than it was.

The way technology and industry priorities have changed over my career so far is quite scary. That alone means things are very different. We didn’t have to worry about how we looked on Twitter or Facebook back then, as they didn’t exist. Websites, in general, were less important and the internet was a bit ‘iffy’, for want of a better word. ISDN lines were the hottest way to send files when I started. That took an age, whereas, now, huge files can be sent in a matter of seconds.

The biggest difference to my days now, though, is the sheer volume of output. With broadband making delivery so much easier, everything we do is on a much larger scale. No complaints though, I love letting people see what we can do.

How do you see your job evolving?

Tough to answer with certainty but, with the digital world ever-increasing – and social media becoming such a huge part of everybody’s business life and personal life – I can only see myself becoming more immersed in life online. If things continue to go well I can see myself being less involved in the day-to-day content production side of things, more involved in the client-facing side of things. It will be a wrench to move away from a part of my job that I’ve always enjoyed but I want to give everything I can to continue the progress we’re making at SNS Group.

Technologies will continue to change and my job will change with them. Who knows, maybe one day I’ll have a whole squad of social media editors working alongside me!

What gives you the most job satisfaction?

Plain and simple: matched ambition. It’s great to go home every night knowing that our office is full of people with the same drive, goals and visions as me. After a couple of transitional periods at SNS, everyone is now settled and pulling in the same direction.  Even after long days, aggro-filled days and days of disappointment, which everyone experiences from time to time, I still come into work the next day ready to go at it again. Working with a great bunch of people always helps but the main thing that gets me up in the morning is the excitement of what the future holds for us. First up? A mammoth 2014.