Not too many people realize that a Community Manager is different from a Social Media Manager. Many people think that they are the same thing due to the fact that Facebook or Twitter can be communities and people that run them are managing them. The two differences amaze a lot of people and if you do not take a class in Community Management then you are not expected to know what the differences are.
A Social Media Manager according to WhatIs.com: “individual in an organization trusted with monitoring, contributing to, filtering, measuring and otherwise guiding the social media presence of a brand, product, individual or corporation.” Generally, a Social Media Manager is somebody that has different experience in business, focusing in PR and Marketing. This is the person that makes a good impression about a product or service through the use of social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter. They also try to encourage their audience to purchase or discuss a product.
Community Managers are a little bit different, they are the ones that are managing relationships not only with their customers but their brands. This person has a background in development, and marketing. A Community Manager generally will oversee a Social Media Manager to see that things are running smoothly while running a general interest community of their own.
After looking at the article “Social Media Manager vs. Online Community Manager: Same or Different?” I now see why people generally have a hard time being able to tell the difference between the two. Above, I did state the “professional” definitions, but I would say that a Social Media Manager deals with representing a good or service through social media outlets, while a Community Manager builds the relationships necessary to the growth of the company and groups audience.
Today many “online managers” will play both roles of a Community and Social Media Manager as many companies and organizations find that it is not a necessity to spend a lot of money to hire multiple people to do tasks that almost go hand in hand. I know someone that works for a major organization (to remain un-named at their request) whose title is Social Community Manager. He does everything from customer outreach and product promotion to answering customers questions about specific products or services. As a one person operation it is tough to do all of these tasks at once where you should really control your Social Media presence as a team.