It’s time to get serious about community management

The management of an ever growing number of social media channels has been a challenge for social media practitioners for years. As more and more clients come on board, each with their own time allocation, the number of channels increases as does the number of people required to manage them – but as we all know “technology scales, people don’t”.

Done properly, community management means more engagement, but this requires more time for interactions. As a result, the cycle perpetuates and more fresh content is needed to be curated, located, edited, approved and published again.

All of this can quickly slow even a two-person community management team right down and affect engagement levels.

People are the problem, but not (always) the solution

Adding more people to the team doesn’t necessarily solve the problem either. There will be different writing capabilities, understanding of the content plan and team availability – all restricting the free flow of content, sometimes even its quality. We’ve all read about the case of the brand who has given the role of channel management to the junior in the office with most time on their hands…Habitat anyone?

To coin a new phrase “people are people, skills vary.”

2012 is the year of Social Media Platform Management

If 2010/11 was the year that social media monitoring became a staple part of your communications strategy, 2012 will be the year that belongs to social media management platforms even though systems of one form or another have been around for years.

The ability to:
manage many more, remote individuals (all of whom may have valuable contributions to make to your social media management channels)
specify different publishing and moderation rights
schedule content

make the content creation and posting process a much more time and cost-efficient team effort – without losing ANY of the top-line control that a social media team requires in order to manage multiple channels.

Likewise, email-driven workflows ensure that interactions of the slightest nature which require moderation or attention can be directed to the right individual at the right time. Add in reasonably sophisticated analytics and you have taken a huge step to solving the scaling and skilling problem so often associated with social media channel management.

But it doesn’t all have to be about the technology – applying simple principles and processes can make a world of difference. Take a look at some of the slides below:

CIPR North West – Social summer 12: Community management tools and techniques

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