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Share This Too: More Social Media Solutions for PR Professionals by Stephen Waddington, Rob Brown, Chartered Institute of Public Relations

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Chapter 9

Community Management

Paul Fabretti

Posting to social media channels is an everyday activity that most brands and agencies do but is rarely as structured and accountable as other communications activities. This chapter explores the many challenges of managing multiple social media channels and offers some simple solutions to get things done more effectively.

What is community management?

Before we can explore the challenges around community management, it's probably worth defining what we actually mean by community management. As with much social media terminology, it can mean different things to different people and if we professionals can't work to a consistent definition, what chance do we have of communicating clearly to consumers?

For the purposes of this chapter:

Community management is simply the nurturing of an audience, all of whom share a common interest.

That common interest could be a celebrity or a sportsperson but is frequently formed around products and brands. Typically, the person doing the nurturing is called a community manager and is responsible for a variety of things like:

  • The creation of visual content (to stimulate discussion)
  • Providing customer service or advice
  • Broadcasting (brand) messages
  • Managing (super) users or influencers
  • Moderation (naughty words)
  • Directing business change (feeding back within the business).

So whilst the role is relatively new in the spectrum of communications jobs, it certainly shouldn't be underestimated. Few people ...

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