ESM Digital's Higher Ed Marketing Blog

6 Qualities of an Effective Community Manager

Your school needs to maintain an active dialogue with your varied constituencies if you expect to remain relevant. Your social media “community” says a lot about who you are, what you offer and what you stand for so you need trained professionals with stellar community-building skills.

The community manager role not only requires an individual to be able to effectively and constantly update any given community, but to also tap into that community to report results back to you.

Effective community managers share these 6 qualities:

Strong communication skills. Community managers need excellent communication skills. Whether they are responding to comments, writing blog posts or directing prospects to admissions, they need to communicate clearly and with purpose.

Sound judgment. A large part of the community management process involves multiple facets of decision-making. The manager must know when to share, what to share, and how to share, depending on the audience, events and culture.

Organizational skills. Community managers often manage multiple platforms at one time, while tracking feedback and sharing that information with other employees and clients.

Analytical background. The ability to pinpoint, understand, and effectively convey concrete social media metrics as a result of online efforts helps to capture the value of a community manager’s work from a client point of view. The community will not always tell you it wants. Analytics, on the other hand, can provide you with better insight into exactly that. This helps community managers filter and refine their content and enhance the success of their strategies.

Empathy. A community manager must be able to effectively communicate with the audience(s) they manage, and that can only happen if the manager knows where that specific audience is coming from, and to put him or herself in their shoes. They are constantly dealing with clashing personalities in a single forum, so they need to tap into the perspective of the audience to guide their engagements within the community.

Dedication. Unlike some other positions, there really is no end-of-day when it comes to managing a community. Online communities do not log off when you do, or sleep when you do. Community management can be viewed and better understood as a lifestyle rather than a job.

Your prospects and future students live in social media communities –you need to build yours! Listen to what they are talking about and use that intel to provide them with stronger and more interesting content. At Effective Student Marketing, we have a dedicated team of community managers who can help you. Contact us today for more information.

~ Alyssa Taliaferro