What is a community manager?
A community manager helps to build, grow and manage a company's online communities. From managing social networks (on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter or LinkedIn), to sharing content, blogging, creating visuals, and moderating customer complaints, a community manager has an important role in today’s marketing environment.
Throughout this article, you will discover the key skills of a community manager, the difference between a community manager and a social media manager, and a list of the top tools for community managers.
Skills every community manager should master
A community manager is considered to be an ambassador for a brand. He uses a dedicated account with his name (not the brand’s name) to create stories around the brand and showcase its products and services to a community.
Indeed, managing a community is a lot of work, so here are 4 key skills that every community manager should master:
Exchange with a community and moderate comments
👤 Profile: spokesperson. A community manager leads and animates debates, and must also moderate discussions on forums as well as comments left on the company pages. He ensures that ethics are respected and has the expertise to handle delicate situations with users to avoid any controversies.
As the company's representative and spokesperson, he receives and redirects customer complaints to the department concerned or deals with them directly, ensuring that the brand has a positive image as it listens to the demands of its communities.
💬 Responsibilities: have exchanges with the community, manage brand infringements, moderate comments, etc.
🔧 Functionalities sought: comment management, conversational tools, pre-publication validation, etc.
Communication and influence
👤 Profile: influencer. Being a community manager is all about interacting with a digital community. Community managers spend a large amount of their time engaging with new and current members of their communities.
To increase brand visibility and gain notoriety across social media platforms, a community manager needs communication skills. This will help him to build and grow communities.
Moreover, he needs to develop strategies to improve the image of the brand with online communities. This can be done by listening to the needs of the community and finding solutions to them. Community managers can even give out voucher codes and other rewards to create goodwill in the community.
💬 Responsibilities: keep the community engaged, set up contests, find ambassadors, etc.
🔧 Functionalities sought: community management, messaging, creation and manage contests, etc.
Empathy and judgment
👤 Profile: moderator. A community manager must be able to empathize with a community and know how to respond in a way that reflects the brand’s values and identity.
As a community manager, you are often the hub of the community. And in this role, you’ll be presented with many challenges that require empathy.
You will need to have empathy and judgment to show the community that you are listening to them and that you are providing solutions. And, without empathy and judgment, you will fail to keep members and, therefore, grow your community.
💬 Responsibilities: identify pain points, provide solutions, monitor the brand’s e-reputation, etc.
🔧 Functionalities sought: comment management, social media monitoring, positioning reports, etc.
Monitor and analyse trends
👤 Profile: watchman/researcher. Monitoring and researching information is a job that takes up a large part of a community manager's time.
A community manager has to monitor the competition and social media trends. Then create reports, metrics and statistics to analyse past actions and adapt future ones.
💬 Responsibilities: manage all social networks, create interactive dashboards, monitor the brand’s e-reputation, etc.
🔧 Functionalities sought: social network monitoring, reporting, competitor marketing activity, positioning reports, etc.
The difference between a community manager and a social media manager
A social media manager manages a brand’s account on social networks. He uses an account with the brand’s name, creates content and has exchanges with customers.
Acting as the brand, the social media manager has to make sure that his content and messages are in line with the values of the brand. A social media manager deals with people who are already familiar with the brand.
Whereas, a community manager, will post as a brand ambassador using an account with his name, not the brand’s name. His goal is to grow his brand’s community by participating in discussions, finding new customers and listening to the current ones.
It is therefore very clear that this job consists of many types of tasks that cannot be improvised. And, this is why we created a list of tools that will help you master your community management from start to finish.
[Selection] Our handpicked tools for community managers
Here is a list of tools that we recommend for community managers. They offer a plethora of features and you should consider what your daily tasks consist of when choosing one.
Keep in mind that this is just our selection. There are other community manager software that exists to cover your needs. It's up to you to choose the right ones!
Social media management platforms
Agorapulse is an all-in-one social media management software that allows you to manage and monitor multiple accounts on the most popular social networks (such as Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, YouTube and LinkedIn).
On a single platform, you can :
- plan posts and the publish content,
- create reports and dashboards,
- moderate comments, mentions and private messages, etc.
With Agorapulse, you can also manage your Facebook community thanks to its CRM module, and improve your relationship with your followers. Agorapulse is an intuitive and efficient solution that saves community managers a lot of time!
Buffer is a social media management platform that community managers use to plan their posts, share content across all social networks and develop a social media strategy.
Buffer’s list of features include:
- community management,
- automated posts with measured results,
- graphs with daily activity,
- tools to create stories on Instagram, etc.
Buffer is easy-to-use and its interface is user friendly, which allows community managers to manage their activity on social networks in record time!
Hootsuite is a social network management platform that offers many community management tools.
With Hootsuite, you will be able to manage Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and Google Plus accounts from a single interface.
Hootsuite’s list of features include:
- campaign scheduling,
- publishing content on social networks,
- activity monitoring with dashboards and KPIs,
- social network management,
- a competitive intelligence tool to inspire content creation, etc.
- integrations with other platforms and tools, such as Zendesk, Slack or Salesforce.
Reputation management tools
Mention is a marketing intelligence software that allows companies and marketing teams to track all information circulating on the web about their organisation.
With Mention, your business will be able to monitor what customers are saying about your brand across many social media platforms including: Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, Youtube, etc.
From following trending topics, to keeping up with hashtags, you will receive real-time notifications which will allow you to deal with topics in record time!
Tools to cover every task of a community manager’s job: the choice is yours!
No matter what tool you use as a community manager, they must ultimately support your core business, which is none other than the loyalty of your community. Your goal as a community manager is to create, grow, federate and animate a community, while having exchanges with them.
And, with the right tools, in line with your social media and web marketing strategy, you will be able to increase your efficiency and improve your brand’s image across all social media platforms.
What about you? What are your favourite community manager tools? Tell us more in the comment section below!