Community manager vs. social media manager
In grade 3, Ms. Anyan diplomatically wrote in my report card,
“Colleen is a social butterfly. She should concentrate on her own work rather than always trying to help her classmates.”
Little did she realize that she had divined my destiny: online community management.
What exactly is community management? And how does it differ from social media management?
Let’s start with the name. I don’t really like the title community management. For me management implies control. I prefer to think more in terms of stewarding a community — being the conduit that connects people to one another and to resources and information. I’ve written about What makes a good healthcare community manager in an earlier post.
More perplexing to me of late is the blurring of the lines between community management and social media management. Fortunately, Rachel Happe from the The Community Roundtable articulated some key differences in a post last month: Want A Successful Community? Don’t Be A Social Media Manager.
Like Rachel and Rich, I too have always maintained community and social media management describe two very different jobs. But I’d like to hear your thoughts. Do you distinguish between the two roles or are they one in the same?