You can be a brilliant cook at home for your friends and not have what it takes to run a professional kitchen. Delighting customers day in, day out in a restaurant despite the stressful conditions requires solid professional skills and passion.
Well this is also true in social media. You can post funny stuff on Facebook for your friends and get lots of likes, read plenty of posts by renowned experts, assist to conferences. All that won’t make you an expert, but you will certainly learn a lot. If you want to be of any value to your customers and communities as a professional in social media, nothing will replace real day-to-day community management practice.
Experience drives value in community management
For this new post, I wanted to stress the importance of daily experience when it comes to growing communities online. As I’ve discovered using Swiss Marketing Twitter acccount & Facebook page, building an active community online and IRL is the result of a lot of work, posts, listening and patience.
From what I’ve come to learn more recently running different social media platforms for Alp ICT, Western Switzerland’s High Tech ICT Cluster, you learn everyday something new about the content you publish, the way you do it, the platforms you want to use and the communities you are engaging. But to get there, there’s no secret, you have to do it for yourself and learn to listen.
Advice should be based on experience
When looking for good strategic advice on social media, entrepreneurs and managers should definitely look for professionals with day-to-day experience engaging communities.
What matters most is not the number of followers (or fans) of the managed communities, but the quality of the interactions generated.
– Are followers engaged in conversations or just getting information?
– Are fans commenting and discussing with other members of the community?
– Is the community manager listening, paying attention, showing interest?
To answer theses questions a simple advice: check the social media timelines & content produced by the professionals you are interested to work with.
Start doing and keep on listening
Using Social media platforms has never been easier. Anybody can open an account on Facebook, Google +, Twitter and start right away. Passing messages to your online communities, listening to their needs, giving a sense to your tweets and posts is more difficult.
If you want to use social media professionally, make sure you get involved in real projects. There are lots of real opportunities out there in startups, clubs, companies and projects to get started, so start doing and keep on listening.
Want to share your thoughts about this post? Don’t hesitate to post your comments. I’ll be glad to read them. See you soon 🙂