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All Articles / Marketing
All Articles / Marketing

How to become a Community Manager

There’s no denying social media has changed the way we communicate forever. These days, we don’t use social media just to share holiday snaps or photos of our baby or birthday, we use it to connect with businesses we love. Business we want to buy from. Businesses who create a world we want to be a part of.

Developing and building a brand is one thing, maintaining and sustaining a company’s brand is another thing entirely. This is where the role of Community Manager, also known as a Social Media Manager, comes in.

As social media is an ever evolving thing, so too is the role of a community manager. And with no hard and fast rules about who or what a community manager is, where do you even begin when it comes to gaining formal qualifications to break into the social media community manager industry?

That’s what we’re here to help you find out…

What is a Community Manager?

A community manager helps build and maintain a company or business brand and online community. They’re the link between the brand and their customers and are usually, but not always, part of a larger marketing team. They not only understand the brand and the image the brand wishes to portray, but they also have a deep understanding of what the consumers want and need from the brand.

It can at times be a fine line to walk. This is why having the right tools and education is crucial if you want to become a community manager brands want to employ and consumers want to engage with.

What does a Community Manager do?

While it’s true the community manager job description may differ between companies, there’s a few key elements you’ll find across most community manager roles. They include but aren’t limited to the following:

Manage a brand’s digital presence across all social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, Snapchat, YouTube and TikTok. As you may know, this can grow to many millions across all social media platforms for the most successful brands. A little daunting but exciting, yes?

Create content to engage with consumers and build trust in your brand. Not all content works across all platforms so understanding the platform and more importantly, who’s there is a crucial part of the role of a community manager. The Tik Tok community will love, love, LOVE a cute video of the brand’s team dancing across the lunch room in onesies. However, the LinkedIn crowd are less likely to be quite so amused. You’ll need to know your audience.

Engage, interact with and respond to consumers who are part of the brand’s online community. This includes Facebook groups and any other platforms where the brand is active. Depending on the brand’s Tone of Voice (TOV) this may be welcoming, warm and empathetic. It may be fun, funny and a little sarcastic.

Complaint handling which can be anything from someone having a bit of a whinge to a person with a genuine concern seeking real help. This is a delicate part of the job requiring a thick skin, deep empathy and great communication skills.

Know what’s happening in the world. Has there been a major happening that aligns with your brand? Has a direct competitor made a mistake you can ummmm ‘take advantage of’? Or have the marketing gods smiled down upon you and *insert name of mega star celeb or pro athlete* has been randomly photographed holding or using one of your brand’s products? A good community manager knows when and how to jump on pop culture moments to build brand awareness. The moment could be super-fast so you’ve got to be on the ball.

Crunching the numbers. Analysing the metrics will be a key part of any community manager role. It helps you monitor what’s working and what’s not quite so successful. You can identify patterns, consumers’ responses and even keep an eye on your competitors.

Relaying all this information to the internal stakeholders. This is where you get to show off all your fantastic marketing skills and engagement strategies with the people behind the brand.

As you can see, being a successful community manager is not for the faint hearted! And not every person will suit every brand (and that’s okay).

Because we use real industry experts and thought leaders as our course trainers, you’ll get real world training. Part of this means, by the time you finish your community manager course, you’ll already have a good idea which brands (or brand types) you’ll be best suited to.

How much can a Community Manager earn?

According to the most recent SEEK information, Australian Community Manager roles were offering between $60,000 and $100,000 with an average salary of $80K.

What skills should a Community Manager have?

Communication – as a Social Media Manager, communication is key, so you’ll want to have strong verbal and written communication skills. You’ll be expected to communicate with a variety of stakeholders including (but not limited to):

  • internal stakeholders
  • consumers
  • your marketing team
  • non consumer external stakeholders (such as collaborators or influencers)

Time management – the world of social media moves fast. As well as executing carefully crafted and highly strategic marketing campaigns alongside the day to day brand marketing, you’ll also be expected to think on the go. Maybe responding to complaints, a news story or major world event.

Be proactive – have a great idea you think would be brilliant for your brand? Speak up. Noticing some trends that would benefit your brand? Jump in. See a celebrity, influencer or other person of note using, carrying or smiling anywhere near your brand product? Get in there to brag, post and always tag the celeb. An unexpected celeb endorsement can make a brand, quite literally, overnight.

Flexible – your job is to market your brand but you also need to respond to consumers. And they can love you or leave you again, literally overnight. You’ll need to show flexibility every single day in every single way. The face of social media is rapidly changing and you need to be able to change right along with it. If your brand loves Facebook but your audience has moved across to Tik Tok, dust off your onesie and brush up on your dance moves because you’re going with them.

What qualifications do I need to become a Community Manager?

As previously mentioned, there’s no absolute community manager job description which means there’s not just the one course or degree you can take to become a community manager. Marketing is one of Australia’s fastest growing fields, with a projected employment/positions growth rate 30 percent higher than other jobs. And you may be managing millions of people on a daily basis across a variety of social media and communication platforms for your brand.

That’s why at Monarch Institute, we offer a range of marketing courses including our Certificate IV in Marketing and Communication and a six month Certified Digital Marketing Professional (CDMP) Course (we even have a CDMP course especially for our Kiwi cousins).

The course any aspiring Community Manager needs is our award winning Diploma of Social Media Marketing. Nationally recognised and delivered entirely online (we even have RPL available), before you know it, you’ll be working in your dream job and helping to build a brand you can be proud of.

In a world navigating its way through the strangest of times, it’s comforting to know there’s an industry with the capacity to do so much good while also offering such future growth potential.

If you’re thinking about a career as a Community Manager (or any other marketing professional), check out the options for online education Monarch Institute offers its students. A real world education for real world jobs. Members of IPA receive a discount to all Monarch courses.

Get in touch today on 1300 738 955 to find out more.