Social media platforms are associated with significant digital transformations but also carry some uncertainty for organisations seeking to capitalise on their affordances while developing new professional roles. This article explores the characteristics and contexts of social media work and the different approaches of organisations as they enter a second wave of application, moving beyond participation to data extraction within conditions of continuous connectivity and community management. The article uses hybrid methods: analysing job market data and in-depth interviews with 18 social media strategists and workers from 13 different organisations. The analysis is informed by critical accounts of digital labour, and emphasises organisations' strategic search for new affordances such as analytics that extract additional value from carefully managed communities. The findings reveal how social media work has become diffused across industries, and is understood 'ecologically', as a capability that operates right across organisations within a dynamic and changing media environment.