Community Manager: Primary tasks and essential skills

Have you ever asked yourself if you need a community manager? The answer to your question is: Yes!

Doing digital marketing is no longer just an option for companies who want to grow and become more competitive. Digital marketing has become an essential part of the marketing strategy for any business that hopes to survive in the current commercial context.

Digital marketing is comprised of several intersecting pillars or cores. Included in these are SEO, content, data analysis, paid publicity, and, of course, social media. In an organization, the community manager is the professional in charge of managing this key marketing element as well as the company’s communication.

In other words, it’s the person responsible for making the social networking machine work correctly within the company’s digital strategy.  Today we’ll see in a little more detail what a community manager does and doesn’t do—and what their professional profile is. We’ll also discuss how to find the best community manager for your project.

What exactly does a community manager do?

First, we have to know the main objective of a community manager. This can be summarized as follows:  

Managing, growing, and developing the digital community around a company or brand in order to establish positive and lasting relationships with followers and potential clients.  

More specifically, the actions of a community manager lead to: 

  • Greater visibility and better brand reputation
  • Growth in followers, traffic, and subscribers
  • Increased engagement and conversions
  • Indirect improvement of SEO
  • Opening of new channels for customer service

As you can see, all of these factors intersect with other marketing actions. A community manager is an integral part of the company, but for this professional to be responsible for the whole marketing strategy would be an enormous job for just one person. Before taking a look at what a community manager doesn’t normally do, for the moment let’s focus on what they do:

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1.- Data analysis

Every strategy that works begins with an analysis of the current situation. When you hire a community manager, they will first seek to answer questions such as these: 

  • What is the current condition of the company’s social media and digital community?
  • What is the level of engagement, traffic, conversions, and reactions to posts?
  • What content or posts have the greatest chance of reaching the target audience?
  • What is the competition doing as far as social media actions and strategies?
  • What results are they getting?

To discover the answers, the community manager will dive deep into the metrics of your social media administration and the social context of companies similar to yours. Later, they will determine which steps to take, discard strategies that haven’t worked, and propose a strategy that will most likely include a monthly post and content calendar.

But the community manager’s analysis doesn’t end there. In reality, this professional is an ally who will permanently monitor the public’s response to your brand and seek to optimize it every day.   

2.- Marketing strategy

Although a community manager is a professional who specializes in social media, normally they have a lot to contribute while planning and developing your overall digital strategy. Sometimes, especially for small and medium companies that are just establishing an online presence, the marketing manager is also the community manager.       

If a larger team is in place, the community manager will still be involved in the details of the actions to be taken. Other professionals who also work as a team to consolidate the global digital strategy are SEO specialists, PPC publicity experts, programmers, etc.

3.- Content creation and management

Sharing the right content at the right time on social media is also the community manager’s job. He or she could be responsible for uploading posts one by one, or even writing the posts. In fact, this is the most common scenario for small businesses without a big budget.

However, ideally the company will scale so that the community manager can be supported by professional social media administration tools and an expert copywriter. The community manager can then focus completely on strategic planning of the editorial calendar and on results analysis.

4.- Communication and customer service

The community manager is also the person responsible for responding to comments, messages, questions, and concerns expressed by users on social media. Therefore, this professional needs to have excellent communication skills in addition to having the best handle on the brand’s tone, philosophy, and values of anyone in the company.

Companies that have very large online communities normally can’t function with just one person “behind the screen,” so community managers are often supported by one or several virtual assistants, or even a chatbot with automated responses.

5.- The press and public relations

Nowadays, the community manager also fulfills the role that used to belong to the public relations manager—you could say that this new profile absorbed most of the PR tasks. So, it’s also normal that part of their job is finding news of interest for the company, dealing with the media, obtaining press coverage, managing media crises, improving the company’s image within a certain sector of the public, etc.

What does a community manager not do?

To clarify, there are many freelance professionals who specialize in more than one of the pillars of digital marketing. We are referring to experts with the experience necessary to plan an editorial calendar with SEO content, manage paid ads on Google and additionally run social media campaigns, for example.

But, it’s important that we not confuse the community manager with a jack of all trades, nor think that the whole digital strategy from start to finish rests on the community manager’s shoulders. Many community managers have the necessary skills to carry out the following tasks, but they are NOT strictly a part of their role:

  • Website development
  • Multimedia content design and editing
  • Specialized content editing
  • Paid publicity campaign management
  • Programming  
  • Etc.

What is the profile of a community manager?

Generally, a community manager has a degree in something related to marketing and communication. In many countries, a degree now exists for this career. But regardless of their academic preparation, these are the characteristics that any good community manager should have:

A good communicator:

The main function of a community manager has to do with appropriately communicating the company’s message. That’s why this person has to be someone who understands how the user thinks and feels. They have to understand the characteristics of the target market and know the correct tone for addressing them.  

It almost goes without saying that the community manager also should have impeccable spelling and grammar, because just one Facebook post with a spelling error or unclear message can spark a wave of criticism.

Excellent service-oriented attitude:

No matter how healthy and responsive your online community may be, you will always have disgruntled users or trolls. Dealing with angry users and clients who use social media to air their complaints is never easy and doing it assertively and tactfully requires a large dose of empathy, patience, and service orientation. The client and the company’s positive image have to come above everything else.

Goal-oriented:

Being a community manager isn’t just responding to messages and posting the company news. It’s making real commitments to short-term and long-term growth. For example:

  • By what percentage should the fanpage followers increase this month?
  • What amount of growth in conversions from social media do we want to achieve with this campaign? 

 The magic of digital marketing is that its results are perfectly objective and measurable, and a social media professional should never lose sight of this.  

Enjoys technology and innovation:

All digital marketing professionals share this trait. They should be truly passionate about new technologies and trends that are determining the future of their field, because how else can they stay competitive and on the cutting edge in an environment that is constantly changing and evolving?

Creativity above all:

Finally, a good dose of creativity and originality is indispensable. It’s not just about “going by the book.” A community manager who dares to innovate and experiment can get extraordinary results with minimal resources, or even create trends through social media strategies.

What tools does a community manager use?

Mainly social media, which at the company level generally already has a designated suite for data analysis and ad management. However, there are many other tools that are designed to manage various social networks, schedule posts, and respond to automated messages all from one place. Some examples are Mlabs, Hootsuite, and Buffer.

 Additionally, a community manager normally needs a good task organization tool to plan their editorial calendar, especially if they work on a team. Two good options are Asana and Slack.

 Finally, Google Trends, Ubersuggest, and Answer the public are just three options for exploring what people are talking about and what information they’re searching for.

How do you find the best community manager for your business?

 Marketing needs are different for every company and startup. At Workana, you can find hundreds of professionals who are experts at social media management. Each one has a very different profile, experience, and professional skills. Your ideal community manager is definitely waiting for you among our great community of freelancers.

To find him or her, follow these simple steps:

How can social media serve a company?

 In case you need additional inspiration, we’ll share with you some examples of projects in the community management category on Workana:

 As you can see, the different activities of a community manager are very versatile, and the range of proposals is very broad. Don’t hesitate to create your project and begin building an online community, growing your sales and scaling your business with a personalized digital strategy.

The 5 best community managers on Workana

If you’re seeking only the best, here are five profiles of our HERO-level community managers. You can contact them directly or invite them to bid on your project:

Carlos T.

Paola R.

Ana P.

Aurenys Q.

Juliana B.

At Workana, our commitment is to help you grow with the help of the experience and quality of our best freelancers. You now have all the information and advice you need to find a community management ally to free the potential of your brand’s network.

 What are you waiting for? Create your project today and start receiving bids and fabulous ideas that adapt to your budget.

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