Thanksgiving is great for so many reasons. It’s a time to share a meal with both the family you were born into and the “chosen family” you’ve created along the way. Despite the shared struggle that has been 2020 and 2021, there’s a lot to legitimately be thankful for. This Thanksgiving is the ideal time to reflect on what you’re feeling grateful for while eating amazing food and enjoying wonderful company.
Collectively, the team at M&P is very grateful for our social media manager extraordinaire, Morgan McCarns. We scooped her up before she could even graduate from the University at Buffalo, because the skills she brings to our team are invaluable. Since the early months of 2021, she’s been helping us deftly manage our social media marketing strategy. As the sole Gen-Zer on our team, she keeps our content fresh, all while reciting trending audio from TikToks that the rest of us Millennials may or may not be cool enough to know about ourselves. This digital creative agency certainly wouldn’t be the same without her creativity and out-of-the-box imagination.
To let her know how grateful we are for her incredible work, we’ve decided to highlight Morgan with a Q&A for Thanksgiving. Eat some turkey, watch the parade and don’t forget to tell someone just how thankful you are to have them on your team.
Morgan, a lot of people don’t quite understand what a social media manager does. I think people believe you just scroll through Facebook all day and make a quick post, but there’s so much more to it! Can you enlighten the less social media savvy about what you actually do?
Depending on the client, my tasks as a social media manager can vary widely. For some of our clients, I analyze social media metrics/data and provide recommendations to improve their social media marketing strategy moving forward. An example of this would be suggesting to a client that they incorporate more of a certain type of content because it performed well previously.
For others, I do the WHOLE shebang! This involves analyzing metrics/data, developing a social strategy for each platform, designing graphics, curating photography, writing copy, developing a hashtag strategy, and engaging with accounts in a client's niche on their behalf. Typically for clients like this, I will also audit their accounts and perform a competitor analysis on a regular basis.
Whoa! That’s a lot to juggle all at once. With so much content to create all the time, how do you find inspiration when you’re feeling a little blah?
If I am feeling stuck creatively, I almost always head over to a website called Savee.it. I would sum it up as Pinterest for creatives. There is a ton of really cool content created by people all over the world that you can draw inspiration from. Savee.it has everything from graphic design to traditional photography. I would highly recommend it to any other creatives looking for some inspiration for their digital creative agency job or otherwise.
If I am feeling stuck in life, I typically head over to Grace Beverly’s social media channels and look at her recent content to motivate me. As a young successful female entrepreneur, she has been an inspiration to me for years. I recently picked up her new book Working Hard, Hardly Working which was a great read.
As a social media manager, you work at home. With the pandemic, a lot of people have switched to working from home and are struggling to find work/life balance. How do you balance work and home life as a social media manager?
I think when you’re working as a social media manager it can be easy to feel like you need to be online ALL THE TIME. It was something I really struggled with initially but have since successfully navigated.
I focus on setting firm boundaries. I only allow myself to check client social accounts between the hours of 8am and 5pm, and keep my notifications off for all social media platforms so I’m not tempted to reply to comments in my free time. I have also made the habit of leaving my phone untouched for about the first hour of the day. This was initially very hard for me, but now I read for about an hour every morning before I even think about work, and it has not only made me more productive but has also had a huge positive impact on my mental health.
Last but not least I try to avoid my phone altogether on the weekends. I know that’s hard to believe coming from a Gen-Z, but it’s true! I often will leave my phone at home if I leave the house and try to focus more on enjoying what is going on around me rather than online. Everyone else’s updates will still be there when you pick your phone back up, I promise!
That’s a truly inspirational approach to work/life balance. I’m sure sometimes work doesn’t always feel like work when you get to create awesome content. What have you had the most fun creating as our social media manager?
I definitely have the most fun working on the M&P social accounts. Kaitlin and Zach encourage me to think outside of the box and push boundaries with our content when we can. Not everyone has the opportunity to spend the day filming TikToks and making memes, so I’m very grateful for it.
Speaking of gratitude...with Thanksgiving coming up, we’d love to know how you define gratitude and what you are grateful for this year?
I would say gratitude, for me, is the feeling of being appreciative of the things around you. This involves taking note of all the wonderful things and slowing down long enough to realize how fortunate you are.
I feel like the chaos of 2020 has put a lot of things into perspective for me, and helped me realize that I have been taking a lot of things for granted thus far in my life. This year I think I’m most grateful for my family. Both the one I’ve made on my own—with my boyfriend, Nick, and dog, Millie—and the one I was born into. I'm also grateful for all of the opportunities I’ve had throughout my life that many others, unfortunately, did not.
Any fun Thanksgiving plans?
We will just be visiting family this Thanksgiving, so nothing too crazy!
How have your Thanksgiving traditions changed over the years?
I used to spend every single Thanksgiving with my own family, but now I often go back and forth between my family’s house and Nick’s family’s house. Last year we had our own Thanksgiving celebration due to COVID and it was very disappointing because I cooked the entire thing and am nowhere near as talented as either of our mothers.
I’ve heard you’re crafty! Any fun crafting plans for Thanksgiving?
Not anything too crafty, but this year I have been put in charge of creating a charcuterie board, which I’m excited about. Who doesn’t love sampling cheeses? I know I do
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