Being a community manager isn’t just about Tweeting, Pinning, and Facebooking all day long. It takes determination, passion, and an incredible amount of skill. Community managers wear many hats, and their workday certainly doesn’t end in time for happy hour. If you’re considering a career in community management, make sure you have the following qualities in the bag:
1) Strong Communication Skills
A successful community manager will have strong communication skills. In many ways, community managers act as a brand representative for multiple companies, so strong people skills are also a must-have. Strong communication skills will come into play both online and in person.
Be outgoing, be friendly, and be relatable. This will help you succeed and branch out as well. Engaging with the audience is crucial. Monitor forums, reply to threads, answer user questions; whatever it takes to make personal connections across multiple social media platforms. A community manager’s finger must always be on the pulse of the community.
Being empathetic requires the ability to actively listen. Community managers must always be actively listening to their communities’ needs. Be aware of feedback, and make a point of adjusting accordingly when feedback comes your way. As a community manager, it’s important to understand what types of people make up your audience.
If you can’t relate to your target audience, you’ll never get anywhere. Personal touch is everything. Remember, you want to sound human, not like an automated robot. Be sure to answer any questions that come your way in a thoughtful, sincere manner. And engaging with users doesn’t have to be done solely on online platforms. Connecting directly to users on the phone or in person (when appropriate) will show your commitment, and will increase your appeal as well.
As a community manager, you are expected to grow within any community you interact with. It’s important to research extensively what communities are buzzing, what’s trending, and so forth. This isn’t a run of the mill 9-to-5 job. When you’re a community manager, you’re always on the clock. Your days will be filled with hundreds of tweets – some angry and others happy.
As Adobe Community Manager Rachel King puts it, “Good or bad, something huge can happen at any time, and when it does, social is the first place it hits.” A truly successful community manager will look at their job as a lifestyle, not just a career.
Community managers oversee multiple social media platforms. They are required to track feedback and report findings, trends and other information to their employers. Make no mistake; being a community manager is very demanding. For this reason, good organizational skills are an imperative quality for community managers.
5) A background in analytics
It’s also highly recommended that community managers have a strong understanding of analytics. Being able to measure metrics of engagement is vital. Understanding how audiences are responding to various forms of engagement, and recognizing which efforts are working and which are not, is essential to the success of any community manager. A background in analytics will also allow a community manager to effectively perpetuate the growth of their audience.
Being a successful community manager takes a lot of time, dedication, and gusto. Community managers are becoming a vital entity among companies, as they are increasing the awareness and success of the businesses they work with. If being a community manager sounds like an appealing career path, make sure you’ve got the right skillset, then go into the field guns blazing.