John Naisbitt, Futurist & Writer
Gone are the days when the big bosses said: ‘Do we really need a community manager? What the heck do they do anyhow?’
Businesses today are readily turning to plugged-in communicators who can manage online communities. Community management is a recognized career these days.
If you are a community manager - check out these predictions, care of Mashable.com, on where the job is headed now.
Digital Trends 2012
1. Timing is key
Check out online tools like SocialFlow and Page Lever to assess the best times to post social media updates. Your audience is checking in at certain times of the day – you had best suss out when that is, and tap it!
2. I made this!
Use-generated content is proliferating. Fans and followers are grateful for acknowledgement, engagement, and the curation of their online content contributions (that you incidentally will get the opportunity to leverage). It’s a win-win for everyone. Check out how Mashable features YouTube videos created by community members in their weekly Cover Song Face-Off series.
3. Mobile behaviour
Did you know that nearly 1/3 of U.S. mobile users access social media on their devices? Get to know your audience’s mobile behaviour. Smartphones and tablets are the new digital frontier for community managers to connect and interact with fans.
4. Break it down
Don’t overlook niche social networks like Pinterest and Stamped. The audiences might be smaller on these niche networks but they are highly concentrated and dedicated. They provide focus group like environments – they are highly-targeted hang-outs that provide an opportunity to connect with specific demographics.
Mashable rightly points out that Twitter and Facebook are often so congested it’s tough to pinpoint communities that share a common interest with your brand. So don’t neglect the spaces in-between.
~ Thanks to Mashable Community Management Predictions for 2012