How to Be a More Creative Community Manager with Content Marketing
This week’s “How To Tuesday” post is about how community managers can get more creative with brand building and engagement. These tips come to you fresh from Italy, via my friend Fabrizio Faraco who is leading the way with social media marketing in the land of frothy cappuccinos and seaside villas.
(Ah, sorry! I got dreamy there for a moment! I haven’t been to Italy since 1997, which was way too long ago.)
Appropriately enough, Fabrizio and I met via social media. Have you ever met a social media community manager that can’t be found on social media? Fabrizio is not that kind. He’s everywhere!
I asked Fabrizio which digital marketing methods and social media platforms he uses to reach out to clients and build his business, and he answered:
- Business blog
- Facebook personal page
- Facebook business page
- Facebook groups
- LinkedIn networking
- Twitter lists
I actually think we’re connected on most of those. It looks like a lot, when you see it in a bullet list. But most people, Fabrizio included, focus on interacting effectively on two or three platforms. The rest, especially bookmarking and content curation tools are effective for sharing your articles and blog posts and those of your community. It’s important to interact, not just dabble.
Social Media Meets Content Marketing
Fabrizio shared some great tips for creative and effective social media management through content marketing.
Tip #1: Use the Tools Effectively with a Goal in Mind
As we’ve discussed, dabbling on many platforms is not as effective as really engaging with people on a few. Fabrizio has spent a considerable amount of time getting comfortable and familiar with as many social media tools as possible so he can share his social media expertise with his clients. But the social media tools are not the goal; they are merely a vehicle to take you to your goals.
“I’m using content marketing, i.e. creating valuable content optimized for search engines, and that content is used for engaging people in social networks,” he said. “The ultimate goal is building reputation while creating strong leads. It’s a cost-effective solution for small business.”
These techniques are just catching on in Italy. Fabrizio shared that there are very few companies who use content marketing back home, and even fewer who are targeting small business, so at the moment he is able to keep a corner on the market.
Tip #2: Creatively Involve Multiple Contributors
A community manager can only develop so much content. The thing that Fabrizio has found to be most effective with his clients is to get multiple contributors involved throughout the organization.
“Go around the company and ask every employee which are the most frequently asked questions clients and prospects ask. Start from your phone calls. From your FAQ. When you collect these questions let all people in your company speak and produce content. People like real people to talk about your brand – not only the marketing guys.”
Tip #3: Creatively Involve and Build Community
“How to engage people can be quite frustrating,” Fabrizio said. He suggests involving the community in the decisions about modifications to your products or services. “Build a community as a club with gamification. Reward the community members with mentions and tangibles.”
He told the story of how he helped an event products company to migrate into event management by implementing a Customer Club and awarding special “VIP” perks to clients who participated in other clients’ events. The result was that the organization increased its client base by 100%!
Thank you for your great tips, Fabrizio! I have enjoyed sharing your ideas on How To Tuesday.
To your success,
p.s. Do you have some great tips to share? Please take a few minutes to take my survey so I can cover your ideas in a future post.