Community manager appreciation day: pros and cons of community management

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With the second annual community manager appreciation day just around the corner, I thought it would be a good time to sit back and take a look at he pros and cons that come with online community management.

So without further ado, here’s my list:

The good

  • I get to speak to passionate, like-minded people every day. The customers I interact with on a regular basis, as well as my community mananger peers, feel strongly about the brands that they interact with.
  • As a community manager I have to be as passionate as my customers to really understand what they say and why. I’m never alone. Managing online communities is not just a nine to five job and whenever I’m up early or battling a case of insomnia I know my community is there.
  • My ability as a community manager is reflected in the success of my communities. A community that performs well is hailed as a good example of customer service or engagement and improves sentiment towards the brand.
  • I get to be the first point of contact for the brand I’m representing, so my professional and friendly portrayal is the key starting point for future brand engagement.

The bad

  • It’s often difficult to find the middle ground between chat and promotion. Being able to post a good range of content can take time and there’s a risk that I’ll be seen as too spammy.
  • A community never sleeps. I have to be available 24 hours a day depending on the needs of my community and I’ve accepted that not everyone has the same sleep patterns as me.

The ugly

  • Remaining happy at all times can sometimes be tough. There are always cases where something may rile you on your community, but you can never ever rise to it. Keeping a calm, professional face at all times can be difficult times, but maintaining composure is the sign of a good community manager.
  • Online communities come in many forms. Although the role has only come to public attention in the last few years, it has been around since message boards and lists first appeared on the Internet. Having said that, I get a lot of satisfaction from seeing queries through to the end, servicing the needs of both clients and community members and ultimately providing a comfortable place where brands and consumers can have an open friendly conversation.

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8 Responses
  • Jan 22, 2011

    That sounds like a pretty fair description of what I do. Thankfully I love every part of it!

    Sheldon, community manager for Sysomos

    40deuce Jan 22, 2011
  • [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Regator [Technology], Santi Chacon and Tobey Deys, Joanna Stratmann. Joanna Stratmann said: RT @freshnetworks Community manager appreciation day: pros and cons of community management [...]

  • Jan 23, 2011

    Good article – nice read! And cool infographic!!

    Very important to mention that a community never sleeps – It’s a 24/7 thing. Success will come to those that realize that.

    Thanks, and Happy Community Manager Day! :)

    Keri Jan 23, 2011
  • Social Media Marketing HQ | Learn Social Media From the Industry's Brightest Minds » Wrap Up of 2nd Annual Community Manager Day: Voices Around the World #CMAD
    Jan 24, 2011

    [...] The folks at Fresh Networks discuss the Pros and Cons [...]

    Social Media Marketing HQ | Learn Social Media From the Industry's Brightest Minds » Wrap Up of 2nd Annual Community Manager Day: Voices Around the World #CMAD Jan 24, 2011
  • [...] Happy #cmad per tutti quelli che gestiscono piccole o grandi community, ma senza dimenticare le micro, o anche quelle che non esistono, ma se esistessero “sarebbe bellissimo”. Quindi una buona giornata di passione e di lavoro per quelli che stanno dietro Wikipedia, a un gruppo sulle “foto in riva al mare ma con il sole contro” su Flickr, a quelli dei NG (esistono ancora!), a qulli delle mailing list, ai ragazzi di Facebook di Quora, di Twitter, ai notturni moderatori delle chat, da Sidney a Oslo andata e ritorno. Auguri. Condividi su…Email This entry was posted in Uncategorized, the unknown community management and tagged cmad, community manager, moderatori, the unknown community management. Bookmark the permalink. ← Le infografiche che ci raccontano quisquiglie. [...]

  • [...] recently, Dan Harris wrote a blog article on today’s 2nd Annual Community Manager Appreciation Day for Fresh Networks.  Fresh Networks’ blog is ranked #2 for Community Management, #8 for PR, [...]

  • Jan 24, 2011

    I think you pretty much nailed it. One of the biggest love/hate aspects for me sometimes is that you have to be an advocate for both your businesses decisions and your customers wants, it’s tricky when they don’t mesh. Great post!.

    GlennDCitrix Jan 24, 2011
  • David
    Mar 4, 2011

    If you’re going to use someone elses content (ie infographic) you should at least attribute to them, not just rip them off

    David Mar 4, 2011

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