By Amanda Smyth Connor
One of the hot new jobs popping up for 2011 is the position of community manager. Online community managers carry four main responsibilities:
1. They serve as the online brand ambassador and work to establish and cultivate communities of users and members. They often serve as the voice of the community, as well as the liaison between the community and the corporation.
2. They track analytics and report back on what marketing and social media strategies are working and what’s not working.
3. They develop communications plans based on customer feedback to better serve the community, while educating other departments, like PR, marketing and social media, on how better to reach said community.
4. They develop content for specific sites to engage the community and keep them coming back for more.
Why should you befriend your local online community manager? #4 on the list above is “develop content.” That’s where freelancers become invaluable to a good community manager. One CM may be responsible for several sites and audiences. It’s rare that one CM would be solely responsible for all of the content creation, thus, it falls on their shoulders to hire the best freelancers and bloggers to assist in creating articles, site copy, blog posts, etc. And if you have some knowledge of SEO practices, you become even MORE invaluable to a CM.
So put out your networking feelers and see who in your mental rolodex might provide an “in” to a CM in need of great writers, like yourselves.
Amanda Smyth Connor has managed online communities and nationwide marketing campaigns for several start-up and Fortune 500 companies, and has been an editor for more years than she can remember.