Community managers have created a true strategy for word-of-mouth marketing, but there are certainly rules to this type of work. Those that follow them can successfully grow their brand. Those that don’t, can wind up in a boatload of customer service trouble — and much faster than you think thanks to socially savvy consumers.
Originally, community management was done by young interns, who did not have the full ability to run a brand online. A study completed by Social Fresh in 2013 stated that the average age of community managers has increased to those in their 30s. Additionally, the pay has increased to an average of $60k which competes with many mid-level jobs within the marketing industry. (See below for a infographic from Social Fresh for more details!)
Having said this, the last few years of experience have evolved community managers into a true voice behind a company. With every post and tweet, they represent the business and should embody its exact personality and tone. When one has this much power and those on the outskirts are watching, it’s imperative that a CM’s actions 100% reflect the brand’s messaging and beliefs to create a seamless extension of the business throughout the online space.
Community managers must be creative, flexible and willing to go above and beyond. Most importantly, CMs must be consistent. And because they’re “virtually visible,” they automatically gain more responsibility. Everyone (customers, competitors, etc.) online can see their responses 24/7.
Here are some general DOs & DON’Ts for community managers:
- Be an expert of your company (or product).
- Monitor, consistently.
- Encourage engagement by genuinely interacting with fans.
- Respond in a timely manner.
- Be a friendly, approachable personality!
- Listen to your fans and build relationships.
- Don’t be afraid to take some conversations offline to better help a fan.
- Truly resolve issues with the greater team to build a loyal community.
- Thank your fans and show appreciation!
- Be rude, sarcastic or defensive.
- Delete comments, posts, tweets, etc.
- Ignore people who are asking for help or answers!
- Be ambiguous with your responses to fans.
- Respond too quickly to those who may detract from your brand.
- Use your social presence to blatantly ‘push’ products or services.
Comment below to add any DO’s & DON’Ts that I may have missed!