Happy Community Manager Appreciation Day! Being a community manager is a tough job. You are on the frontlines as an advocate for both the brand and the consumers. Dealing with issues, complaints, and positive and negative experiences can be tiresome. Having to post original, clever content on a daily basis (at least) can get difficult. In honor of Community Manager Appreciation Day, I’ve created a list of the top 5 ways to be a wonderful, fantastic Community Manager!
Looking at the community as a party, the community manager must act as the perfect host. As a host, the community manager must make sure everything is running smoothly, maintain conversations, and solve any problem that comes up. Party hosts must acknowledge all of their guests just as a community manager must acknowledge all their fans/followers/commenters. While a community manager does not need to make sure the chips and dip don’t run out, it is important to make sure there is always new information being shared with the community to encourage them to return.
Be a Bodyguard
While working as the community manager for a brand, it is very important to protect the brand’s online reputation. It is easy for negative comments to spiral out of control if not dealt with immediately. Acting swiftly when dealing with reputation issues is always the best method. Community managers are not only charged with protecting the brand’s reputation, but also protecting the community. Community managers are wonderful advocates for the brands’ fans. Having a direct line to a company’s consumers provides a great opportunity to notice any problems that may need to be brought to the attention of the management team. When working on issues between the brand and a community, it is important for the community manager to stay unbiased and work towards a solution for both parties.
Always Stay Cheerful
When dealing with a community of outspoken individuals, it is easy to lose your positive outlook and let negative comments get you down. Don’t let it happen! Keeping a cheerful, positive attitude is a wonderful way to turn a negative experience into a positive one. Keeping yourself positive will make it easier to work out solutions and problem solve. When managing communities, it is important to not let negative comments or experiences get you down. Having a friendly, cheerful community manager is a great way for community members to feel comfortable in sharing their experiences. I’m a big fan of exclamation points!
Being creative and “thinking outside the box” is one of the most attributes of community managers. Creating and posting clever, informative content on a daily basis can get difficult. A community manager needs to get to know his/her community. By knowing what types of posts will do well and what won’t do well, you will have the ability to set up a content calendar of successful posts. Unfortunately, the only way to get to know your community and what they will respond to is through a lot of trial and error. By “thinking outside the box”, community managers are able to share information and engage with their community in new and fun ways. Who doesn’t love a good “Caption This” or “Fill in the blank” post (when used as part of a content plan)?
Being patient is without a doubt, the hardest attribute listed here. When dealing with a community, it is often easy to get overwhelmed by community members who spam the page or continuously post about the same issues over and over. The key to being a patient community manager is having the ability to stay positive with both the community members and the brand. Being a community manager means having a strengths in both listening and working towards solutions.
Being a community manager is a tough job but with a good attitude, a willingness to help, and some creativity, it is also very rewarding. Solving problems and turning negative experiences into positive experiences are the things that community managers live for.
Now that you know what it takes, go thank your Community Manager for all of their hard work!
With 2012 over, we are going to start being bombarded with Top “whatever” of 2012 lists. Let me be one of the first to present you with a list of what I believe are the top 10 social media moments of 2012. These moments/events are not in any particular order.
1.) In March 2012, Invisible Children created a video showing the struggles of people in Africa and what they have been doing to stop it. Overnight, this video was shared millions of times, and #KONY2012 and #STOPKONY became international trending topics. Celebrities, like Oprah, Rihanna, Justin Bieber, and Bill Gates all began tweeting about the cause. At the time of writing this blog, the Kony 2012 video has 95,317,759 views on YouTube after being up only 9 months.
2. ) Oreo had a big year in social media (nice job, Oreo community manager!). With multiple viral messages, Oreo became one of the top brands on social media for showing personality.
My favorite example of brands having fun and showing personality was the conversation between Oreo and AMC.
With over 500 retweets, it’s always nice to remember that there is a person with a sense of humor behind the brands online. Oreo took a stand on June 25th by posting a picture of an Oreo cookie with rainbow layers of crème with the caption “Proudly support love!”. This support of Gay Pride Day caused quite the stir for Oreo, even after threats of boycotts, Oreo stood by their post. Today, the post is still gaining engagement with over 297,000 likes, 60,000 comments, and 90,000 shares.
3.) When Chick-Fil-A president, Dan Cathy, announced that he was “guilty as charged” of donating to anti-gay charities, the popular restaurant saw an explosion of posts on its social media properties. To try to fix the problem, Chick-Fil-A posted a response (that was more of a non-response, if you ask me), to Cathy’s remarks. This response fueled the fire and created multiple boycotts and angry responses. Without an official press release or responding to Cathy’s remarks, Chick-Fil-A paid the price for popularity on social media accounts.
4.) Hurricane Sandy or “#Frankenstorm” was one of the first large natural disasters to be documented on a variety of social media sites. Homeland Security, cities, and government agencies used social media to quickly get the word out about the state of the places hit and where people could receive help. During Hurricane Sandy and the following days, Instagram saw ten image uploads per second with a Hurricane Sandy related hashtag, which quickly spread to Facebook and Twitter. Users uploaded more than 800,000 images to Instagram using the hashtag, #Sandy. The website Instacane.com popped up to chronicle the disaster through images from Instagram. People began sharing their experiences with others through Facebook and Twitter. By sharing their stories in real-time, many people gained a comfort in social media knowing that they were not alone.
5.) 2012 was a big year for new social media platforms. Anyone, who has read any of my previous blogs or knows me, is aware that the biggest social media moment in my life in 2012 (other than beginning at Intrapromote, of course) was the discovery of Pinterest. Pinterest and Instagram became mainstream platforms that many people visit daily. Pinterest has passed LinkedIn as the third top social media site and is now competing with Twitter and Facebook. Pinterest hit 10 million unique United States visitors faster than any website has in the past. Instagram has taken off in 2012, as well. After being acquired by Facebook for $1 billion in April, Instagram now sees 7.3 million daily active users. More than 5 million images are uploaded to Instagram every day. It’ll be exciting to see how these platforms continue to grow and improve in 2013!
6.) On October 15, Felix Baumgartner jumped from 128,000 feet above Earth to land on the ground in New Mexico. This event, which was sponsored by Red Bull, was called “Red Bull Stratos”. With YouTube live streaming the event, approximately 8 million viewers watched Felix plunge towards Earth. This YouTube/Red Bull event has the most concurrent live streams in the history of YouTube.
7.) The entire 2012 Presidential Election could be followed through a variety of social media platforms. Memes, videos, and images filled our Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram accounts leading up to the big day.
On Election Night, Twitter erupted with election and voting trends. Throughout the day, Twitter received 3,000 tweets/minute about people voting. At 10:16 PM on the night of the election, Twitter peaked with 20 million tweets about the election. This made the 2012 election the most tweeted event in U.S. political history. Top trending topics for that day regarding the election were #Election2012 and also #Stayinline. When President Obama announced the news of his victory, his “Four More Years” tweets had over 128,000 re-tweets within 10 minutes of being tweeted.
8.) Mars Rover, Curiosity, provided the world with the first real-time look at Mars. It has also been providing us with FourSquare tips, as it explores the planet! When the Mars Rover checked in on Mars, it became the first check-in ever on another planet and the second check-in in space.
9.) 2012 was the year of viral music videos and parodies. In March 2012, the world was graced with the musical stylings of Carly Rae Jepson and her hit “Call Me Maybe”. With 364,354,474 views on YouTube, this video went viral fast with thanks to social sharing. This video was not only shared throughout social networks like wildfire, but it also sparked many parodies. Everyone had their own take on this video, from the Harvard baseball team to the U.S. Olympic swim team.
Another video that spread quickly by means of social media is PSY’s “Gangnum Style”. The video was the first to hit 1 billion views on YouTube. Like “Call Me Maybe”, “Gangnum Style” has provided us with many parodies, including a few political versions done just in time by the popular humor site, College Humor.
10.) The 2012 Summer Olympics will forever be known as the first social Olympics. The International Olympic Committee put strict rules on Olympians on what they can publish regarding their Olympics experience. Even with the strict rules, many athletes saw their social media followings explode. Gabby Douglas’ Facebook fan count grew from around 14,000 to 600,000 in two weeks. When Usain Bolt won the gold medal in the 200m final, Twitter saw 80,000 tweets per minute immediately following the race. Popular swimmer, Micahel Phelps’ Twitter followers grew to over 1 million throughout the course of the Olympics. When McKayla Maroney received the silver medal, instead of the anticipated gold, the image of her on the podium went viral quickly with the caption, “McKayla is not impressed”.
2012 was a great year for social media. Who knows what 2013 will bring!
Like most things, Pinterest comes with a set of rules to ensure its success and safe use for everyone. A few months ago, there was a lot of talk over Pinterest’s change in its Terms of Service. With a platform that was created around the idea of sharing other’s images, it can be difficult to keep track of copyright infringements, so the Terms of Service helps clarify some of that confusion. For those that can’t dedicate the time to dig through the Pinterest legalese, I’ve broken down a few important pieces to think about while using Pinterest.
- First of all, you can’t steal another companies’ name. When opening an account with a business name, you become
authorized to use that name. However, if you are not an employee of the company, then that is against the rules. Basically, don’t create false accounts. Easy enough.
- In Pinterest’s list of things not to do, which can be found on the Acceptable Use page, it states that users are not allowed to download User Content or Pinterest Content to use on their own. This includes automated scripts, spiders, robots, etc. It is also mentioned that it is against Pinterest’s policy to save and story personal information about Pinterest users. This rule was to prevent bots and automated programs to collect data throughout Pinterest about users and protect privacy in many cases.
- Recently, spammers, who have thousands of pins and boards, have invaded Pinterest. In short, the easiest way to identify a spammer is if they have a seemingly normal pin with a completely unrelated caption accompanied with a shortened or otherwise indiscernible link.
- One of the most controversial pieces in Pinterest’s Terms of Service is that the user must agree not to post User Content that is harmful. From Pinterest: “…creates a risk of harm, loss, physical or mental injury, emotional distress, death, disability, disfigurement, or physical or mental illness to yourself, to any other person, or to any animal”. This was portion was created in part to address a pro-anorexia group within Pinterest, Tumblr, and Twitter. With the ease of posting pins, these social networks banned together in an attempt to “outlaw” the viral “thin-spo” (thin-spiration) craze. There have also been groups with racy images that have been banned from Pinterest. Rule of Thumb: keep the pins G/PG.
- One of the most important things to realize about Pinterest’s Terms of Service is that once you’re gone, you’re gone FOR LIFE. So don’t get banned, because then you’ll have to hire a wedding planner.
There you have it! A few of the many Pinterest regulations broken down, but there are still a lot that have not been covered. Please check out Pinterest’s Terms of Service to make sure you knows exactly what is and isn’t allowed!
If you’re still not sure about this whole Pinterest thing, check out The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Pinterest Marketing written by Christine Martinez and Barbara Boyd and edited by Intrapromote’s Director of Social Media, Annalise Kaylor! This book will be available for sale on November 6.
A new social media network recently launched called Pheed. This network has taken many of the favorite aspects of successful social networking sites, such as Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, Instagram, and Soundcloud, and incorporated them into this new platform. Using Pheed, the channel owner is able to post text, video, pictures, or audio called “Pheeds”. Pheed even has the ability to create a new Facebook status or tweet from the platform.
Pheed’s cofounder, O.D. Kobo shared the reasoning to incorporate so many different options into Pheed to Fast Company, “…after two years I kept thinking, why can’t I do more? Why didn’t they introduce video? Why can’t I upload an album? Wouldn’t it be interesting if Instagram offered text? Would Twitter have been shaking in their boots a little bit? Maybe it was necessary for other platforms to come about.”
Kobo explains the evolution of the various social networks, “The wheel had to come about before the car,” he says. “There are stages, like how Friendster came, then MySpace, then Facebook, each one improving on and adding to the format. There was Twitter and now Pheed–the evolution of a genre.”
Introduction – by Dylan Price
Last week we asked the greatest social media community manager on the planet, Katie Hehn, to go without the internet in her personal life. The basis of the experiment is simple; let’s see if Katie can survive a week in the “Dark Ages”: an age where no search engines were available, an age where social media was writing a letter and dropping it to the USPS for delivery. Could one of the children of the internet revolution get resourceful in her adult life and accomplish the day’s simple tasks like it was 1996?
In Day One, Katie was tasked with finding, navigating to, and checking-in to a coffee shop that she’d never been to before. Check out the Day One recap!
This is how it went, from Katie’s journal:
As someone, who relies on Pinterest, for recipes, making dinner without the Internet can be quite difficult. The only cookbook I own is for Crockpots, which is weird because I don’t have a crockpot, so I was in desperate need of some recipes for dinner. My challenge on Tuesday was to crowdsource my resources to find recipes for a dinner entrée, side dish, and dessert. I ended up calling my Mema, Aunt Johanna, and co-worker Jessica for their recipes. Luckily, I received fairly simple recipes, but looking back now on it, I wish I had asked more questions to clarify a few things before cooking. The nice thing about the challenge was that it gave me an opportunity to talk to relatives, who I mostly communicate with over the Internet. The food that I made was good, everyone I called gave me wonderful recipes. Howevever, there were a few things that I think would have been different had I been able to find recipes online. The cheesy potatoes were made in a dish that was too big, if I had Internet that probably could have been avoided. I also added too much flour to the rosemary chicken. If I were following a recipe online, I would have had exact measurements (even though my Mema told me not to put too much flour).
I’ve never had to listen and write down a recipe over the phone because the Internet has always been so readily available to me. After writing down recipes not very accurately, I would have been more precise. I realized after I got off the phone that I didn’t ask for a single measurement while on the phone. Rookie mistake.
My favorite social media platform is currently Pinterest. If you know me or have read any of my blogs, this is very clear. I have held “Pinterest parties” where my friends and I will craft or cook things from pins we saw on Pinterest. I am 100% the demographic that Pinterest is aiming for. Before I fall asleep, I browse through Pinterest every night. I’ve had to live without Pinterest before since it is still relatively new. Before Pinterest, I was not nearly as crafty or skilled in cooking (I’m still not very skilled). Pinterest makes people better! It helps you share ideas and make your world a little bit more pretty and sparkly.
Other than that, it was a successful experiment! I am really beginning to miss social media. Not being able to browse through my timeline throughout the day has made me feel very out of touch (but I am being very productive at work!). So far, the only thing that I’ve given up that has affected me is not having access to social media. Not being able to Google or browse the Internet as usual has not caused me as much frustration as not being able to communicate via social media.
Introduction – by Dylan Price
Last week we asked the greatest social media community manager on the planet, Katie Hehn, to go without the internet in her personal life. Katie is a great candidate for this type of torture mostly for her age, being just barely over double digits when Intrapromote was founded, but also the degree in which she is immersed into social media personally.
The basis of the experiment is simple; let’s see if Katie can survive a week in the “Dark Ages”: an age where no search engines were available, an age where social media was writing a letter and dropping it to the USPS for delivery. Could one of the children of the internet revolution get resourceful in her adult life and accomplish the day’s simple tasks like it was 1996?
This is how it went, from Katie’s journal:
Today was the day that this experiment began! Day 1 is already a bit frustrating: once Dylan changed my Facebook password, I realized that my Spotify account would no longer work. So annoying. I am always signed in to Facebook to monitor our client’s accounts, so I always have access to my personal Facebook account. I’m already missing my Facebook and Twitter…I have no idea how I’m going to get through the next few days!
The week before I gave up the Internet, I tweeted 80 times, posted 12 Facebook statuses, posted 6 pictures on Instagram, and re-pinned somewhere around 200 pins on Pinterest. To say that I am not social media obsessed would be putting it lightly. I am also the type of person that will Google the random questions that pop into my mind throughout the day. I do not watch the news or read a newspaper; I get all of my news from the Internet and social media. I listen to Spotify throughout the work day and have a subscription to Hulu plus. I do not know how to get anywhere without the Mapquest app on my iPhone. I am connected to the Internet in every possible way.
Dylan’s first challenge was for me to find a FourSquare special without using any Internet, including FourSquare. Lucky for me, I knew what area the coffeeshop was located in, so I didn’t need to attempt to use a map or a phone book. Thank goodness. However, I did need to confirm with my mom over the phone that a street number of 2060 means that its on 20th St., not 2nd St. Once I got there, it was closed, but I made it there! Once I was there, I “checked-in” by calling 5 friends, just to let them know I was there. While on the phone with Dylan, he made a good point that if I had the Internet, I would probably have known that the coffee shop was closed.
Living in a world without FourSquare or GPS would be such a sad place. Can you imagine not having the opportunity to check-in wherever you go and possibly be surprised with a “check-in special”? Those specials are such great surprises! I like being able to go on FourSquare and see who I’m beating in points or who I just ousted as the mayor. (Side note: The day before I gave up the Internet, I was outsted as the mayor of the Butterbeer cart at Harry Potter World at Universal!) The friends that I called to let them know where I was were pretty annoyed that I was calling to let them know I was at a random coffeeshop. Could you imagine annoying people letting them know where you are throughout the day or would people just not care? I guess constant FourSquare updates filling up Facebook and Twitter feeds can be annoying too, so with or without FourSquare, you are still annoying people. But doesn’t everyone want to know where everyone is every minute of the day? We need to figure out a happy medium.
I haven’t gone crazy yet, but I really just don’t know how people survived without Facebook and Twitter. I keep thinking “oh, I should tweet that”, but nope. I can’t.