Welcome to Community Management 101.
Community Managers are a critical component in the successful execution of social media activities.
There will be a quiz on this at the end, so take notes.
The Rise of Community Management
Community Management is a necessary component of successful social media marketing, and socializing of businesses. Someone (or multiple people) need to be accountable for the adoption, development and growth of an organization’s online network.
Read on and you will learn what you need to look for in an effective community manager, who needs community management, and where to find an amazing community manager.
What you’ll need:
A tech and social-savvy individual, that loves your brand (or can at least fake it really well), innate understanding of the principles of customer service, ability to “think on their feet,” and an authentic interest in activating and inspiring stakeholders both inside and outside of the company.
Community Managers need to be organized, friendly, intelligent, resourceful and curious.
In most companies, community managers are “on their own.” Typically, companies hire some kid, fresh out of college, and make him or her accountable for representing the entire brand often without goals, guidelines or ground rules.
DON’T do this.
Instead, have a plan. Know what you expect and want from your community managers. Remember, these individuals are representing your brand online and the web has a long memory. Make sure that community managers are given guidance and direction. Let them know the ground rules, but give them the autonomy to fix problems themselves. Finally, ensure that your community managers know that they are not alone. In the event of a significant crisis, community managers need a resource to turn to, like an internal or external PR and crisis management team.
Who needs a community manager?
Are you using social media to market your business? You probably need a community manager.
The community manager is more than just a person with an internet connection that knows how to use Twitter. Community Managers are advocates. If you are trying to get people to change or adopt a technology, someone needs to provide ongoing support, guidance and excitement. I don’t have to tell you this, but people rarely embrace change. A person may embrace change, but to get a new technology rolled out internally, or a new marketing channel adopted externally, someone needs to be accountable for growing the community.
Where can I find these superheroes?
Believe it or not, these fine, skilled individuals are all over the place. Community Management is a hot, up and coming field. There is a whole group of people looking for work right now that are friendly and tech savvy, who would like nothing more than to get paid to use technology and get other excited about it.
In many cases, the perfect community manager is already working for you. You can spot them by their enthusiasm for the company or its products and services. They already have a tendency to talk with other people, and they may already be trying to use Linkedin or Twitter on their own to accomplish their objectives. Look through your company and find those people.
This has been Community Management 101.
More lessons to come.
All students are required to leave one comment below. Please read the following links for your homework.
- Getting Members Into The Community Mindset
- How Do I Get People To Use My Platform (or do anything)?
- Getting your feet wet in Social Media & Community