It may not be rocket science but it’s usually not as easy as it sounds.
Most brands release post after post to the sound of crickets, and every other week, you read about some sort of social media meltdown happening somewhere.
A community manager’s role is not only to get people to know about your community, but to get them to feel engaged and get actively involved in it.
We’ve been fortunate enough to help build a few communities and here are some tips from our community managers.
1) Understand Your Audience
Unlike the early noughts, it’s no longer enough to know just the high-level demographics of your target audience. We help companies build comprehensive buyer personas that help you understand the motivations, needs, and concerns of your core audiences. Understanding these not only helps to better engage with them, but also aids in the brand’s content creation efforts as well.
2) Research Your Industry & Competition
Take a look at your competitors’ Facebook page to better understand the customer service and engagement expectations that your audience has.
What are the main gripes that your competitors’ audience have? How can your company better serve them?
3) Create a Customer Service FAQ
We also need to find out what are the common customer service questions your customers typically ask. Most of the time, your front office staff will be able to provide you with what everyone needs to know.
4) Create an Escalation Plan
Sometimes a situation occurs that can only be resolved by involving your management team. For example, if you’re running a shopping mall and someone injures themselves on the wet floor and uploads a photo of the incident. Who do we need to call? How do we reach them? What is the first thing we need to do while getting in touch with your managers?
An escalation plan attempts to foresee common scenarios and outlines the necessary steps to take if it occurs. A lot can happen in a social media minute, and we need to be able to react fast.
5) Answer Questions
Answer comments and customer service questions to show your customers that your Facebook page or Twitter profile is a great resource for them. Be timely when you answer questions as sometimes your customers need the answer right there and then.
But of course, there’s no need to answer every comment and good judgement should be used.
6) Social Listening
Monitor the brand’s digital conversations to discover and understand what customers are saying about your brand and industry online. This provides us with great insight to customer perception and can also help nip any problems in the bud.
7) Humanise Your Brand
Social media is where you can take off the corporate mask and show the world that real people are behind the brand. People want to talk to people, not some faceless entity. Corporate speak tends to be ignored on social media. Show the people working hard behind brand, your CSR efforts and your brand story.
8) Showcase Customer Stories
It doesn’t always have to be about your brand. Your customers deserve the spotlight as well. Social media channels such as Facebook and Instagram are great places to highlight your customers and tell stories about how they are using or interacting with your products and services.
9) Ask Questions
It’s good to ask meaningful questions that get your customers to pause, think and provide considered responses. Get them to share their problems or success stories or their their fears and dreams. You want to show that you care and that you’re listening to them.