The Evolution of Community Management

Be Creative Vector

By Jessica Chen

Community management has been around in some form for almost a decade, starting in the mid-2000s with forum moderation, evolving to what it is today. It is common knowledge that this form of brand representation is now an essential component of any company’s social media presence and overall business strategy. So how has it changed? Let's take a look at the evolution of community management.

Then:

Community management has served as an almost instantaneous bridge between brand and consumer, allowing countless people to voice their opinions, so long as they have an internet connection and a social media account. Consumers understand that this is one of the best ways for their questions, comments and complaints to be heard and addressed. Community management humanizes brands and allows them to connect with people.

Now:

Recently, more and more brand marketers are branching out from traditional practices to experiment with varied types of responses. While they are, of course, still providing helpful information, customer support and a friendly presence, some marketers are using their responses to showcase their creativity.

Clearasil recently posted a video called “Interruption” featuring a scene involving a son's mom catching a glimpse of his computer screen before he abruptly slams it closed. This served as the launching pad for a new tactic in social media: using community management to reveal brand new custom creative. When people commented, Clearasil posted 7 different videos with scenarios for what Steven was watching. These videos were a great way for Clearasil to prolong the lighthearted mood of the post, and to introduce fun, innovative content.

Community management can be as creative as you want. As long as you keep in mind the intended voice, brand, and purpose, feel free to mix it up by using different forms of content in your responses. After all, it’s all about engagement and what works for the brand and community.

How have you seen community management evolving?