To bring our social channels to life and achieve the best end result, we often have to rally hundreds of employees and their time to attract followers to our pages. Running a social media community is like running a country. This includes all the achievements and challenges that come with it. By adopting the following best practices, we can ensure that our channels have constant engagement with loyal fans who continue to interact with these pages daily.
1. The key to keeping on top of your community
With thousands of interactions and multiple social channels, there is not one, but several important factors to stay on top of everything. To begin with, a large social team can be assembled across multiple markets with clear operational structure, roles and responsibilities, and of course, class management tools, to streamline the process. Alongside all of this, consistency is vital to ensure that all markets are creating content and communicating with customers and fans, in a way that is distinctive to the brand.
2. Setting and measuring goals
The main focus of community management is the customer experience and the journey they have with the brand on social media, while continuously representing the brand in everything they do.
As this is harder to measure on a daily basis, we turn to Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) such as response time, resolution time, and customer satisfaction scoring to evaluate the team’s performance.
For example, one of a brand’s major goals should be knowledge sharing as it is measured mainly by feedback. This can result in changes to the brand, service or product to improve customer experience.
3. Be unafraid to experiment
A brand should not be afraid to experiment. Generally, strict codes of conduct or lists of ‘do’s and don’ts’ definitely have to be implemented, but these should be kept to a minimum. Most of the time, it comes down to the experience of the team in handling conversations on a daily basis to highlight opportunities where they can interact in a fun way.
Having core values can help. For example, Careem, the leading ride hailing app in MENA, Turkey, and Pakistan, maintains a stance of being humble, supportive and fun. This follows through, in that order, when the social media team interacts online to ensure that they respond appropriately to conversations with their tone of voice, and also cater responses to the conversation we are having.
It also helps when one builds stronger relationships on pages, where key team members know the personalities of some people and can be a lot more open to talking to them.
4. Learn from social media mistakes
Every brand has a different purpose for their social media strategy; this can range from using their social channels as a digital billboard for their content, to an exclusively platform for customer service. Therefore, it’s hard to point out mistakes without knowing the role of social media in their organization.
However, there are a few key mistakes I have observed in general where brands are not taking advantage of the amazing opportunity community management can bring. A lot of brands struggle with understanding the persona of their audience – what they like, dislike or would want from them, despite even though they have a team talking to their customers on a daily basis who should be very well aware of their audience persona. If brands use a tool to monitor and track their conversations they can even break down conversation types, track sentiment and can even convert these into business cases.
5. Scaling social media management tools
Coverage geographic scope is probably one of the biggest obstacles for any brands. Operating from all over the globe, it is a necessity to adapt to various languages, mindsets, social channel usage and even the country’s sentiment – to suit one’s platform. Often, the scale will pose a challenge; at Socialbakers, we see some markets that are heavily dependent on social media content, this leads to massive engagement on some pages reaching in excess of 100,000 comments on some posts, organically.
This is exactly when dependency on tools came into play. With each channel having multiple touchpoints, for instance, Facebook has over five, and at scale, managing these conversations natively was not possible without missing out on at least half of the interactions.
Community management tools help filter through conversations, streamline the flow of incoming engagements, enable conversation tracking, tagging, and of course, provide team management features. In combination with the right social media posts, a smart approach to community management can last a lifetime, shaping priceless brand loyalty and customer advocacy.
Co-written by Alexandria McCulloch, Global Editor, Socialbakers