What’s the difference between a social media manager and a community manager and why does it matter?
This is a tricky question to answer because over the years job titles (looking at you, social media rockstars, ninjas, and gurus!) and key responsibilities have become much more fluid in order to keep up with the ever-changing digital landscape and business needs.
We like to think of community management as a set of responsibilities rather than a job title because there’s a lot of overlap. In our Community Skills Framework™, we identify the essential skills exhibited by successful community managers.
So, let's compare...
What is a social media manager?
What is a community manager?
A social media manager is the voice of the brand on social channels. They walk the brand walk, talk the brand talk as the brand. It can be one person running the show or a team of twenty, but they’re so good at being the voice fo the brand you’d never know. Social media managers spend the majority of their time on content strategy, content creation, and customer care.
A community manager is an individual who has a public persona within a larger organization. Their key responsibility is to facilitate relationships with like-minded community members - which might include employees, brand advocates, customers, or members.
A day in the life of a social media manager:
A day in the life of a community manager:
- Creates and curates marketing content on behalf of the brand
- Schedules posts and monitors comments and engagement
- Listens to conversations about the brand and interjects, if necessary
- Analyzes social media metrics, which vary from brand to brand, depending on key performance indicators (KPIs)
- Provides customer care and escalates issues to the customer service team
- Manages the interface between two communities/groups/networks (in effect be a translator)
- Participates in the conversation personally
- Creates the environment the encourages the intended outcome
- Influences activity of the participants
A lot of organizations are trying to shift from social media management to community management, which isn’t an easy task. However, with a strategic foundation, executive buy-in, and clearly defined expectations, a new community can be built to scale with measurable ROI.
Do you need more knowledge about a specific facet of community work? Need to bring your team up to speed and on the same page quickly? Keep scrolling...
We offer workshops designed to bring your team up to speed quickly. Whether you're starting fresh, or need to get a team of stakeholders on the same page our live workshops have helps hundreds of marketers and communications professionals reach their community goals.
Foundations of Community Management
While community and social media management overall, community has a language and cadence all its own. This foundations level course is designed for teams that need to get on the same page with the basics of community management.
During this workshop, we offer research-backed perspectives, examples, tools, templates & exercises, from over ten years of global community building, to teach you how to:
- Frame and execute your role strategically
- Practice community management actively not just reactively
- Focus on strategic value, not just community value
- Scale yourself; moving from engagement to enablement
Online Community Strategy
The foundation of a successful community is a well-defined strategy that integrates tools and methods with business goals and processes and aligns an organizations' goals with member needs.
The Community Strategy Workshop sets you up to succeed to define and execute a community strategy that keeps engagement high and delivers ROI. This workshop is designed to:
- Explore the needs and motivations of members and your organization
- Define shared purpose and value for your community
- Identify key behaviors that generate value
- Deliver a clear, crisp community narrative
- Develop a high-level community roadmap to ensure that you reach your community goals
We've spent over a decade working with global community leaders fine-tuning the programs, tactics and tools that make online communities successful. We've distilled the best of these research-backed resources into individual bundles focused on common community challenges.
A community by and for community professionals. We vet all new members to make sure they fit the strict definition of a community manager, ensuring you’re surrounded by people who do the same work you do and have experience solving the same problems you face.