Why is Community Management important?

Scaramanga take us through why Community Management is important in social media.

With over 3.6 billion people across the world using social media, the demand for brands to manage their community increases daily. Whether you use YouTube, Facebook, Reddit, Instagram, etc, the moment you press like, subscribe or follow, you’re involved in a community.

Being involved in a community can be as simple as following the company page for Apple on Facebook.

What is community management?

Community management is monitoring online communities, identifying and acting on engagement opportunities, while increasing the connection between the brand and its audience.

This doesn’t only involve multiple posts a day on your brand’s social profile. Instead of posting three times a day, why not reduce that to one or two, and use the time you would have spent on the third post

Your community is your target audience, users who engage with your brand online, or even current consumers who use your business. Focusing on community management is a must if you want to have a long-lasting presence, and gets more important as your brand grows.

The benefits of community management

There’s a variety of different benefits that end up coming from employing community management in your social strategy. The four key elements are;

  • relevancy
  • reputation
  • humanisation
  • monitoring

Relevancy

The demand for brands to manage their community increases daily. Community management allows brands to have a social presence that can transform regular consumers into loyal fans of the brand. It also lets the brand have a unique voice, and can give you an edge over brands that don’t have a community management plan.

The Twitter account for The Museum of English Rural Life experienced a huge boost in relevancy after posting a tweet and capitalising on the engagement to follow. An archived photo of a large sheep along with the text “look at this absolute unit” was all it took. (An “absolute unit is a person/animal of exceptional body mass and/or size).

The tweet has been retweeted over 25,000 times, liked over 100,000 times, and had over 30,000 comments. It went viral almost instantly and increased the Museum’s Twitter follower count from 10,000 to more than 30,000 over a short time period.

The tweet even caught the attention of Tesla Motors CEO, Elon Musk, who changed his profile picture to the livestock sheep which opened an opportunity for the Museum to engage with the entrepreneur and his millions of followers.

After the stats proved that there was a demand for this type of content due to the abnormality of the livestock shown, an entire social campaign went live which focused on informing and sharing black and white photos of livestock, vintage drawings of monumental pigs, and content featuring recently captured farm animals, while engaging and educating their newfound community.

The campaign saw the Museum increase its Twitter following to 100,000 followers just under a year after the absolute unit was tweeted, and the campaign helped the “museum vastly increase its social media following and welcome more visitors through its doors.”

Using a combination of meme culture and farmyard animals they were able to achieve multiple viral tweets and increase their social awareness and community to that of the levels of the larger museums (Leeds Museums, London Transport Museum, and Bristol Museum).

Reputation

If a user has taken the time to engage or post asking a question about your brand, it’s important you answer back or at least engage with them. By engaging with the user’s post, it helps strengthen that relationship with the user. This is important because it’s a public answer. Everyone on the platform can see how you interact with users, and how you handle any queries and form an opinion about your brand based on this.

Now, not every B2C or B2B brand should copy this approach for obvious reasons. While it can be seen as an unorthodox social approach, it’s still an approach that gets users interested and wanting to get involved more with this rogue brand.

Wendy’s has recently gone a step further and created an entire social media community event called National Roast Day, an entire day where brands can beg Wendy’s to roast them. It may seem strange but any brand that gets a roast from Wendy’s can expect large numbers of engagement and views on that day.

Humanisation

It is important to keep in mind that while engaging with other users, there are actual humans on the other side of the screen. Community management helps with this by allowing your brand to feel and become more human.

Humanising a brand allows you to come across as relatable to users. Any social media posts, online advertising or campaigns should be curated in a way that makes a connection with the users. Ignoring this will mean your brand appears distant and cold and in return, your room for growth will be diminished as well.

I manage a few community fan pages/groups on social media and it’s always important that we give any user that engages with us an immersive experience. One of the communities I own is Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp, a community based around the free-to-play social simulation mobile game with the same name.

In this recent post, the game made an announcement about its recent Valentine’s Day event, so, we reminded players that their in-game item was expiring, and some users decided to even share with us who they used the item on.

This creates the perfect opportunity for the page to engage with the comments and even offer insight into how the moderators of the page who play the game also did with theirs.

Small details such as the sign off with the moderator’s name after the comment is a vital part of humanisation, as users do forget that there is another human writing out the messages and comments behind the screen.

Monitoring

Monitoring is the best way to get the most accurate online conversations that are related to your brand and the community surrounding it. This includes monitoring an opportunity and approaching it, use a specific social platform’s search functions to see if any online conversations is going on about your brand or a conversation that your brand could jump into and help with. Monitoring helps you to create an optimal strategy so that you can follow the points above in more detail.

As a brand owner, you’ll more than likely be looking to grow and reach new users who may become consumers.

It’s important to focus on existing consumers and followers you may have online. That’s exactly where community management can help your brand.

Community management isn’t some fancy new thing, it’s a concept that has been around for ages and as each week goes by, becomes more and more important. Social strategies are adjusting to this as well, with community management playing a dominant part in the future for growth and brand presence. There’s no good reason you shouldn’t be looking to be more active with your community, start engaging!

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