The PR BlogDigital PRSocial Media ManagementA Community Manager's Job Description

A Community Manager’s Job Description

What exactly falls “under the jurisdiction” of community management?

Cover photo: @jerrysilfwer

Community Manager is an increas­ingly pop­u­lar job title.

I think of the com­munity man­ager (also known as social media man­ager) as a clas­sic­al con­duct­or ded­ic­ated to show­ing the online com­munity (the orches­tra) how to get in sync, nev­er through force or coer­cion, but by using the magic­al powers of sug­ges­tion alone. 

So, what exactly falls “under the jur­is­dic­tion” of the com­munity manager? 

Here goes:

Responsibilities of a Community Manager

I’ve out­lined sev­er­al typ­ic­al respons­ib­il­it­ies here:

  • Develop and drive the inbound mar­ket­ing strategy.
  • Adapt cor­por­ate mes­saging for social channels.
  • Manage online influ­en­cers and secure magic middle collaborations.
  • Transform social media chan­nels into cus­tom­er experiences.
  • Set up land­ing pages and com­pile lead magnets.
  • Drive traffic, interest, leads, and sales to land­ing pages.
  • Monitor the online com­munity pro­act­ively and reactively.
  • Analyse and optim­ise for increas­ing rel­ev­ant online conversions.
  • Run the email mar­ket­ing- and the autorespon­der program.
  • Strategically man­age fol­low­ers on social media.
  • Manage online reac­tions on owned, earned and paid platforms.
  • Deal with online trolls and handle online issues man­age­ment.
  • Continuously eval­u­ate and report on com­munity reactions.
  • Manage and engage the brand’s true fans.
  • Establish and execute a growth strategy for the brand com­munity.
  • Prepare and man­age any online crisis.
  • Manage online cus­tom­er ser­vice when it appears with­in social networks.
  • Train exec­ut­ives and spe­cial­ists on how to use social media.

The above scopes of work are some of the most import­ant pub­lic rela­tions activities. 

Recommendation: I use Mailchimp as my default email list manager.

Recommendation: I use Missinglettr to cre­ate and sched­ule my social media posts.

Recommendation: I use to cre­ate, man­age, and deliv­er lead mag­nets and con­tent upgrades.

Recommendation: I use Email List Validation to pro­tect my sender repu­ta­tion by keep­ing my lists free from boun­cing emails.

Recommendation: I use SamCart to host online courses and oth­er edu­ca­tion­al material.

The Community Manager Appreciation Day

Many com­munity man­agers I talk to tend to have this one thing in com­mon. They often feel under­ap­pre­ci­ated. No won­der the pro­fes­sion has its own day every 4th Monday of Januarythe Community Manager Appreciation Day.

Please sup­port my blog by shar­ing it with oth­er PR- and com­mu­nic­a­tion pro­fes­sion­als. For ques­tions or PR sup­port, con­tact me via jerry@​spinfactory.​com.

PR Resource: The Inbound PR Strategy

Inbound vs Outbound

The inbound mind­set is a fun­da­ment­al shift in pub­lic relations.

Instead of focus­ing on try­ing to spawn non-exist­ing audi­ences, PR can do so much more with exist­ing online pub­lics. 1See also The Publics in Public Relations (Doctor Spin).

If your inbound PR strategy is good enough, you might not even need an out­bound PR strategy.

Jerry Silfwer speaking about inbound marketing
Jerry Silfwer (Doctor Spin) speaks about inbound marketing.

Read also: The Inbound First PR Strategy: Beauty From Within

PR Resource: The Follower Contract

The Follower Contract

Many brands must rethink their approach to hav­ing fol­low­ers, fans, and sub­scribers. Having a brand com­munity is your priv­ilege, not theirs. How can you hon­our their engagement?

Think of every single fol­low­er, fan, and sub­scriber hav­ing this agree­ment with your brand:

Dear Brand,

  • Yes, I’m now fol­low­ing you. Congratulations (to you).
  • I fol­lowed you based on what you’ve demon­strated in the past, so don’t be sur­prised if I’ll stop enga­ging (or unfol­low­ing) if you do oth­er stuff.
  • You now have my per­mis­sion to provide me with the type of con­tent that first attrac­ted me to your brand.
  • I, the fol­low­er, will determ­ine any involve­ment on a future case-by-case basis.
  • My fol­low is not a ‘pay­ment’ for your past accom­plish­ments; my fol­low is an ‘advance pay­ment’ for what I expect from you in the future.
  • It would be best if you always pre­sup­posed that I’m inter­ested in myself and my friends first and then, maybe, in your brand.
  • Until we part ways, I expect you to be clear about my poten­tial involve­ment in your cause.

Best regards,
Your New Follower

Read also: The Follower Contract

PR Resource: The High Road Tonality

The High Road Tonality

An organ­isa­tion is the total sum of all its cowork­ers. Imagine tak­ing the most mature traits from each cowork­er and com­bin­ing them into one voice — the high road tonality.

  • Openness. A mature organ­isa­tion under­stands that every­one must be allowed to express their thoughts and opinions.
  • Fairness. A mature organ­isa­tion will see (and respect) both sides of a divis­ive argument.
  • Strength. A mature organ­isa­tion is con­fid­ent in its chosen strategies and acquired abil­it­ies, not because they’re per­fect, but because they are grounded.
  • Wisdom. A mature organ­isa­tion will take their time to explain com­plex top­ics without condescendence.
  • Humility. A mature organ­isa­tion under­stands that no one can have everything com­pletely figured out and that we all have learn­ing and grow­ing to do.

Read also: The High Road Tonality: Don’t Be Pushed Around

PR Resource: The Social Objects Workshop (SOW)

The Social Objects Workshop

To pro­mote word-of-mouth for your brand, you need an idea about what social objects to cre­ate con­tent around.

Social object = what people talk about with each oth­er. A social object could be a thing, a per­son, an event, a concept etc.

For your brand, there are dif­fer­ent types of social objects:

  • Curiosity objects. What do people seem curi­ous about with­in our brand’s sphere of influ­ence?
  • Fear objects. What do people seem afraid of with­in our brand’s sphere of influence?
  • Gap objects. What con­cepts or vocab­u­lary is miss­ing with­in our brand’s sphere of influence?
  • Mystery objects. What do people find mys­ter­i­ous with­in our brand’s sphere of influence?
  • Inspirational objects. What do people find inspir­a­tion­al with­in our brand’s sphere of influence?
  • Envy objects. What do people seem to envy with­in our brand’s sphere of influence?
  • Conflict objects. What do people seem to be fight­ing about with­in our brand’s sphere of influence?
  • Ego objects. How do people express their indi­vidu­al­ity with­in our brand’s sphere of influence?
  • Anger objects. What do people seem angry about with­in our brand’s sphere of influence?

Workshop: In the first half, spend a few minutes on each type of social object. Write each idea as one sen­tence on a Post-It start­ing with, “Have you heard…”. In the second half, run through the ideas dis­cuss­ing, “Is this some­thing real people would say?”

Read also: 9 Types of Social Objects and How To Use Them for PR

1 See also The Publics in Public Relations (Doctor Spin).
Jerry Silfwer
Jerry Silfwer
Jerry Silfwer, alias Doctor Spin, is an awarded senior adviser specialising in public relations and digital strategy. Currently CEO at KIX Index and Spin Factory. Before that, he worked at Kaufmann, Whispr Group, Springtime PR, and Spotlight PR. Based in Stockholm, Sweden.

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