Every Friday I post links to a few of the blog posts that I read during the week that I found interesting and insightful.
Included in this week’s round-up is a discussion about the evolution of a big community launch; what it takes to be a great community manager; how one railway company uses social media to reward regular customers; and six rules of online engagement.
The way most organizations approach communities is broken. The big launch doesn’t work. Targeting the big influencers doesn’t work. Issuing press releases, getting press coverage and gaining a larger amount of attention for a short amount of time doesn’t work.
Finally, great community managers work at great companies that believe in the idea and value of community. Companies that ask their community managers to routinely and repeatedly prove the value of community don’t offer the environment where a community manager can flourish. Community is a long term game and you can’t build long term if you are concerned that they’ll shut you down short term.
Last year the mayor of the station was approached unexpectedly and asked to turn on the lights, but this year Chiltern Railways adjusted the format, turning it into a competition. So with Christmas approaching, I set myself the target of being the mayor of Marylebone station this year.
Use social media to help you stay in touch with your customers in a personal way. In the “old days” this would be making a phone call, and there’s nothing worng with doing that today too, but you should also try to respond directly to tweets and other comments on social channels. You could also set up a loyalty program to reward return business, or offer discounts through social media channels to your most loyal customers to help them feel valued.
Think there’s something missing from this list? Leave a link in a comment, or tweet me @BenLaMothe!