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Community Managers - What Is A Community Manager And How To Recruit And Hire One

A community manager is one of the most important and necessary roles in any community. A community manager oversees and manages an online or offline community, engaging with members to keep them engaged, providing support, and resolving problems as they arise.

What is a community manager, and how do you find one? Let's take a look at what a community manager does and how to find and hire one.

What Is A Community Manager?

A community manager, in general, is someone who connects and contributes to individuals in a community both online and in person. They cultivate relationships and keep members by maintaining them.

Community managers' responsibilities vary depending on the company or organization for which they work, but they are typically in charge of developing and managing social media campaigns, moderating online communities, organizing events, and engaging with customers and followers.

Why Is A Community Manager Important?

2 men discussing using tablet and laptop
2 men discussing using tablet and laptop

Community management is important because it enables businesses to connect with their customers and prospects on an individual level.

In today's digital age, more and more people are turning to social media and online communities for product and service information.

A community manager can contribute to the development of these relationships by creating engaging content, monitoring feedback, and responding quickly to inquiries.

Community management also assists businesses in identifying potential leads and measuring the success of their social media campaigns.

Job Description

3 people discussing on desk using laptop
3 people discussing on desk using laptop

The role of the community manager is to manage the environment rather than people. Concentrate on empowering the members, and the community will thrive.

As previously stated, founder involvement is required in the early stages of building your community.

Many of the initial tasks are not clearly defined, and it is also difficult to determine which tasks belong to which department and who is accountable. Founding members have skin in the game for this generalist role that requires support, moderation, events, and so on.

Even if you decide to hire early on, make it clear that the job description is for a leader, not someone who checks boxes.

Instagram is one successful company that hired a community manager early in their business.

Against every business textbook, Instagram first hired Josh Riedel, a community manager, to assist the founders in working through the company's early user concerns and doing customer development.

Customer Development

A community manager serves as a liaison between the company and the community. You have a lot of untested hypotheses about your business model when you first start out. Who are your ideal clients? What features or products do they desire? How should the product be delivered, priced, and so on...

These facts and insights are not contained within your building. To find them, you must do the legwork and delve deep into your community's trenches.

Community managers understand what makes their members (potential customers) happy and what makes them tick. These insights are also extremely valuable to the product team (but keep in mind that community managers aren't PMs and can be misled).

Skills Required

Community is an excellent department to begin one's career in a company. Because it provides you with insights into all departments, increasing the depth and breadth of your early experience exponentially. And your experience on the community team will be useful if you decide to move on to another department.

Outstanding community managers combine creativity, empathy, and systems thinking. You need someone who can set up processes, resources, and tools that can grow alongside you and aren't just responsive to what you can pull together at the moment, especially if you're scaling quickly.

As previously stated, the best place to find and hire community managers is within the community! They are already familiar with the company's history, products, and services.

Even during the interview process, ask if the candidate has done any research on your community because it demonstrates initiative and allows you to move deeper into the conversations rather than the usual, more generic questions.

Social Media Footprints

The social media profile of a candidate contains a wealth of information. It is not only useful for the actual job, which is traditionally social media management, but it can also be used to assess the potential hire's level of sociability and creativity.

Community jobs necessitate creativity, and at least some of it should be visible in their online presence. Nowadays, if someone has a surprisingly low social media presence, you begin to wonder why.

Finally, keep in mind that people are interviewing your company as well, and having a community is excellent brand signaling. Because of our strong online presence and community, hiring has become much easier for us across all departments. Another reason to get your community up and running for success, if you’re still on the fence.

Social Media Manager Vs. Community Manager

Community Managers Social Media Managers infographics on a weighing scale
Community Managers Social Media Managers infographics on a weighing scale

A community manager is someone who interacts directly with a brand's online community.

While everything in their profile should state that they are associated with the brand, they use their own social media accounts and post as themselves as they interact with other members of your community to help increase your brand's online presence.

They will also interact as themselves in favor or support of a brand in more private groups (such as Facebook groups or Reddit threads).

A community manager for a car brand, for example, might interact with specific tweets that use the brand's hashtag, join Facebook groups for brand owners, or participate in various Reddits about the cars.

This involvement would entail answering questions and responding to concerns or comments, sharing promotional content (giveaways, discounts, etc.), and more.

A social media manager, on the other hand, is someone who interacts with a brand's community on behalf of the brand.

This means they interact with the online community through the brand's social channels and platforms.

A social media manager differs from a community manager in that he or she acts as the brand itself, publishing posts as the brand, responding to questions or comments as the brand, and creating ads or sponsored content as the brand.

This alters the voice and tone of all content created and shared: it's not good form for a brand to gush and rave about itself, but it's completely expected from a satisfied customer.

A social media manager would be on Twitter, Instagram, etc. posting as the brand about updates to features, new releases, engines, and more – all as the brand.

People Also Ask

Is A Community Manager A Good Job?

If you enjoy interacting with others online or in person at live events, a community manager position could be ideal for you. It is also a position in high demand as more businesses recognize the value of social media and community development.

How Do I Get Community Management Experience?

A bachelor's degree in a relevant field, such as marketing or communications, is usually required for community managers. Learn about marketing, sales, and social media. Employers seek community managers who are knowledgeable about marketing strategies, sales techniques, and social media management.

How Do I Become An Online Community Manager?

An online community manager must be able to multitask and handle multiple roles. A bachelor's degree in marketing, communication, business, advertising, or a related field is required to work as an online manager. Employers prefer applicants with prior management experience and a track record of brand success.

Conclusion

Finding the right candidate takes time and effort, and finding a great Community Manager is no exception. Community managers are in high demand as the world becomes more online and social, especially in light of the pandemic, when mom-and-pop businesses must go online to survive. So, whether you're looking for a job or just want to learn more about community management, hopefully this overview will help you.

About The Authors

Keith Peterson

Keith Peterson - I'm an expert IT marketing professional with over 10 years of experience in various Digital Marketing channels such as SEO (search engine optimization), SEM (search engine marketing), SMO (social media optimization), ORM (online reputation management), PPC (Google Adwords, Bing Adwords), Lead Generation, Adwords campaign management, Blogging (Corporate and Personal), and so on. Web development and design are unquestionably another of my passions. In fast-paced, high-pressure environments, I excel as an SEO Executive, SEO Analyst, SR SEO Analyst, team leader, and digital marketing strategist, efficiently managing multiple projects, prioritizing and meeting tight deadlines, analyzing and solving problems.

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