The fourth Monday of January is International Community Manager Day, one of the newest and most booming professions in the digital market and, of course, in business.
Community managers or social media professionals are responsible for managing the interaction of a brand with its customers and followers through social networks.
And although it may not seem like it, it is a really difficult task, where you have to be very careful about what you say and how you interact with each member of the community.
History of the profession
The origins of the term 'community manager (online)' date back to 1995 with the advent of web-based role-playing games in the video games industry, involving a multitude of players. The roles have expanded to include a huge variety of responsibilities and skills including public relations, marketing, customer support and social media management. Game community management often includes communications support, open gaming community and IT developer. At its core, community management encompasses a little of each of these, while retaining its fundamental principle of ensuring open and rewarding communication between the developer and the community.
Although the term "online community manager" was not used at the time, the role has existed since online systems began to offer functions and features to support community building. These early efforts, in the form of bulletin board systems, had leaders known as system operators. The early 1990s saw the growth of major online. Key features of these services included communities that went by various names including communities of interest and special interest groups. Their leaders were referred to as "community managers".
What does a community manager do and what are their skills?
When you're a community manager, explaining your job can be frustrating, especially when you're dealing with family members or other relatives who find it difficult to cope with being regularly logged on to popular social networks such as Instagram, Facebook y Twitter, which are often filled with people who are not interested. We are quickly lumped together! To understand and know how to deal with this, you have to dive into the sphere of online community management to discover how important it can be for companies, their brands and certain personalities (artists, sportsmen, entrepreneurs and politicians, to name but a few).
What does a community manager do?
The role of a community manager is to act as a "bridge" between the cause for which he or she works (usually a brand, a company, etc.) and a community, i.e. a group of consumers or a loyal public with common interests. The community manager is the ambassador of the brand or company and must engage with real or potential customers by establishing lasting relationships of trust. It is up to the community manager to accurately measure loyalty to the company, the brand, using social listening tools to monitor feedback and engagement levels.
Why is the community manager not a social media manager?
The job of a community manager cannot be reduced to that of a social media manager. It goes far beyond that. While there is an overlap between their roles, with the community manager and the social media manager interacting with a community on the same social channels or platforms, there are clear differences. While a social media manager focuses on the logistics of content creation and distribution - managing a content calendar, posting to social networks and monitoring analytics - a community manager focuses on setting community guidelines and implementing them.
Moreover, the short-term goal is not the same, even when both professionals are working on the same channels. The community manager makes posts with the aim of getting customers to communicate with each other, a goal measurable by qualitative data such as quality or level of engagement. The social media manager will only make posts to pass on information or engage in conversation with customers. His action is then measured by the number of direct responses.