Community Management: What It Is and What It Does
If content creation is king, then community management reigns as queen. While content caters to a somewhat broader audience, drawing consumers in with useful and engaging information, community management acts as a more personal touch, developing intimate relationships with audience members through one-on-one interactions. This is the process that truly sets the men apart from the boys and allows businesses to establish a loyal fan base.
Where Content Goes, Community Management Should Follow
Content is an essential part of inbound marketing, but it does have its limitations. While well-crafted content can attract a wide range of consumers and lead them directly to your door, it can’t actually “talk back” and interact with your prospective customers. Community management takes things a step further by maintaining ongoing conversations with readers. When someone has a question about the blog article he or she just read, community management is able to quickly provide answers. If an individual posts a complaint in the comments section beneath a particular piece of content, community management acknowledges the issue and provides a solution. And when a raving fan has great things to say about your brand, community management expresses their gratitude and amplifies the sentiment.
Producing content without a community management strategy is like setting your entire office up with a new computer network but without any IT support in place: it won’t do anyone much good in the long run. With community management, content can act as a springboard for conversations and sales opportunities for an extended period of time while nurturing customer relationships. Wherever there is content, then, there should be a good community management plan in place.
Benefits of Community Management
Still not convinced that community management is an important component in your social media strategy? Take a closer look at just some of what community management has to offer:
Community Management Delivers Fast Responses — In a fast-paced, digital world, consumers now expect immediate answers and results when they reach out to a brand. If an individual posts a complaint or question on a business’s social media account, they anticipate a reply right away. If a response doesn’t come quickly, the complaint can become amplified across social media, eventually becoming a major PR nightmare. With a good community management strategy in place, though, any issues can be addressed promptly, offering fast solutions before problems have the opportunity to explode into larger issues.
Community Management is Interactive — Content may be confined to the 140 characters of a tweet or a single image posted on Facebook, but community management doesn’t have these restrictions. Pairing the two, then, can expand the reach of your content. Broad content can enable you to set the stage for ongoing interactions with consumers by posing a question, setting up a joke, etc. From here, community management is able to continue the conversation through its replies to reader comments.
Community Management is Personal — Community management allows you to have personalized conversations with individual consumers in real-time. Not only does this develop positive relationships and brand loyalty, but it also allows you to create a very unique voice and personality for your brand — in other words, it makes you human!
Don’t miss out on important opportunities to develop ongoing relationships with your customers and build up your brand. Community management is what gives your inbound marketing strategy the personal touches necessary to close deals and grow your business.