Tamara Heller started working at Your Social, a Dutch full-service social media company, in July 2012. As Community Manager, she's the most important link between brands and their fans. She's the digital voice within the communities of Weight Watchers, ERU Balans (a Dutch cheese brand), and Landal GreenParks (a European network of holiday villages).
What Are a Community Manager's Must-Have Competences?
TH: "Community managers wear many hats. Not only is creative copywriting a big part of our job, focus on the analytical and strategic side is really important as well. Having an eye for design, constantly updating yourself on what happens in the social media sphere, and always being on the lookout for new content ideas is crucial. Community managers don't always deal singularly with the typical love brands, so being able to place yourself in a brand's mind is critical."
How Does Being a Community Manager Enrich Your Life?
TH: "Besides working for a great social media company, I'm personally also very active on social media. I'm addicted to scrolling through my Facebook timeline, Pinterest boards, and Instagram feed! Personally, I really enjoy how big brands incorporate news events and holidays into their own feeds. Basically, I'm able to do the things I enjoy in my spare time for my job as a community manager. How awesome is that?!"
What Kind of Mindset Does Your Job Require?
TH: "Above all, having a creative and flexible mindset is key because creating engaging content is a continuous process. I can't just stick to one strategy and expect it to work for all clients, which is why performance based community management is so important. Don't just look at what competitors and other communities are doing, but also learn from how your own fan base responds to your content and dive into the insights of your brand's key influencers. Really get to know your community, and improve your performance.
Secondly, a creative mindset is also necessary to easily pick up on social trends. Whenever Facebook launches a new design, like they did with the introduction of timelines, we have to easily respond to it with new designs. Furthermore, I consider Pinterest "a platform to watch", and I'm constantly updating myself on how it evolves for our clients' benefits."
Content Marketing is a Big Part of a Community Manager's job. What's Your Take on it?
TH: "Big companies and agencies clearly know how to create original and surprising content. But more importantly, this content needs to contribute to a brand's story. If social media posts are only for the purpose of creating many likes and 'applause', brands are just failing to create quality conversations that align with their strategy.
Social media posts aren't only for the purpose of creating many likes and 'applause'.
It all comes down to this: brands need to build relationships with (potential) customers. Every Facebook post, Tweet, or blog article should be a part of that. But let's just be honest about it. Due to the multitude of channels brands encounter it can be a challenge to distribute their content, which makes it difficult to share a coherent story. Brands shouldn't forget to correspond to the customer's."
Weight Watchers is One of Your Clients. Which Campaign Are You Most Proud of?
TH: "I was able to work on a cool project for Weight Watchers in the Netherlands. The brand offers a complete lifestyle and encourages people to make drastic changes in their lives. It's not just about dieting. In April 2013, we launched a multi-platform Facebook game called 'Versla De Verleiding' (English: 'Beat The Temptation') and consequently took 'gamification' to the next level. By playing the game, you not only found out why healthy eating and exercising is was important but also why it's okay to indulge in your favorite treats once in a while.
This insight aligned completely with Weight Watchers' new approach to 'innovation'. The goal was not only to acquire fans on their Dutch Facebook page but to create awareness for the Weight Watchers program. The campaign was a huge success! We counted more than 10,000 players, and the Facebook page acquired nearly 4,000 new fans. However, the most remarkable thing was that the campaign provided instant ROI, and we were able to earn back all of our media costs!"
This post originally appeared on the Engagor blog.