Daily Archives: November 1, 2013

Lessons Learned From a Panel of Community Experts

On October 15th, our community management class was able to conduct a Google Hangout with three people directly immersed in the world of community management and social media. Nick Cicero of LivefyreDavid Yarus from MRY, and Morgan Johnston from JetBlue were able to share aspects of their personal and professional experiences. Each of the social media savvy experts were able to contribute different pieces of valuable advice to the class and help extend our learning experiences from classroom activities and discussions.

Morgan Johnston shares advice with the class

Morgan Johnston shares advice with the class

Push The Limit Morgan Johnston discussed people who come into the field who don’t necessarily understand the rules within an organization. Questions like “You mean I can’t get away with this? Why not? Why are we doing this?” pushes people to be a better community manager. It’s important to ask questions and find out why people are doing what they’re doing, why they’re doing it, and how they’re doing it. Not only does it provide someone with knowledge, but it allows you to reevaluate policies that are being followed.

Social Is More Than Being Social Nick Cicero heavily discussed the involvement of social within different enterprise corporations. Community managers work with other departments such as marketing, public relations, and communications to ensure that the same information is consistently conveyed by the company. Because there will always be interplay between different departments., “you don’t have to be the hero even if you are the guardian.” Community managers hear what the community thinks and therefore feels a sense of ownership, but it’s important to remember that lots of departments that work together to promote the same idea. The different voices of these departments all have to shine through while wrangling many of the issues a company may face.

We Are All People On Either Side of The Screen Perhaps the most important piece of advice came from David Yarus, who reconnected social media back to the people and the more humanistic aspect of the job. He stressed that we were all humans on one side of the computer screen. He urged us to text people rather than send overly formal emails. People respond well when they’re treated as such. David said that remembering to be human gets you back real results.

Each of the panelists had different experiences that contributed to different advice that each student took away from the experience. All of the panelists spoke wondefully and I’m appreciative of the time they shared with us.

Do you agree with the advice above or have anything to add? Let us know in the comments below! 

Learning from a Community Manager Panel

In class last week, we were very fortunate to have a Google+ Hangout which included David Yarus from MRY, Nick Cicero from Livefrye, and Morgan Johnston from JetBlue. This was an extremely interesting chat because each of the men were from different backgrounds and their jobs and responsibilities were a bit different. They each offered unique perspectives on topics that we have been learning about so far this semester.

What the CM/SMM does according to the Panel

It was very neat to see each of the men’s opinions on the role of a community manager or social media manager within their organization.As for David, a community manager at MRY monitors and strategizes while working with creative,strategy, and analytic teams to construct the foundation for their strategy. Also, they are the ones that may be writing the actual posts that we see.

Morgan Johnston speaking to CMGR class

Morgan Johnston speaking to CMGR class

As for Morgan at JetBlue, he focused more on the social role, which was a bit different than the others. Social responsibilities were split up among 3 teams: corporate communications, marketing/commercial, and customer support. Corporate communications does the storytelling, the marketing/commercial focuses on creating content, and the customer support are the ones focused on engagement. So, when it comes to engagement, the customer support team is the part of JetBlue that responds to tweets and other social media engagement.

When it comes to Nick at LiveFyre, there are many different departments that work in different areas, but when it comes to community managers, customer service is the department. He states that there is a marketing team that focuses on marketing, and a customer service department that manages the communities. However, the marketing team works in tandem with the customer service team to find opportunities in social conversation.

Metrics & Analytics

We were able to get a glimpse of different tools that each company uses for monitor trends. Morgan and Nick talked about what their company uses. Nick stated that they use Hootsuite, which is a social media dashboard where you can manage multiple social networks, schedule different tweets and messages, track mentions, and analyze traffic. He states that they use it so that they can identify where specific instances are happening and maintain an effective level of communication.

David Yarus speaking with CMGR class

David Yarus speaking with CMGR class

As for Morgan, they use a tool called ExactTarget Social Engage which allows multiple people to be involved and helps manage the conversation. This tool offers features that support engagement growth and makes it easy to scale up and deliver the kind of engagement that customer’s want. It was interesting to see that no one uses tools designed by the company, but it was very interesting to see the different type of tools that they use to monitor trends, since last week we learned about many different metrics.

 

Important Takeaways

Like previously stated, this was a very interesting panel discussion because of the different backgrounds and companies of the speakers. It was an eye-opening discussion when they all stressed how they work with so many other teams to make sure everything is consistent across the board. When I originally thought of a community manager or a social media manager, I would think of a particular department,  or a community management department. My thinking has now changed and this discussion has led me to believe that the more teams that work together when it comes to social responsibilities, the better. With all of these different people and departments, you get more layers of expertise and the group benefits as a result. Everyone working together can increase engagement and can produce successful social media/community strategies.

It was also interesting to see how many positions there are that have to do with social media and the community. While we really focus on social media managers and community managers, this discussion really showed how many careers are in this field. Who knew customer support could be where community managers reside? Who knew that marketing teams would work in tandem with community managers? It was great to see the connections and learn about positions in these exciting fields.

Nick Cicero speaking with CMGR class

Nick Cicero speaking with CMGR class

 

  • If you were to ask David, Nick, or Morgan a question, what would it be?
  • Have you worked with any of these monitoring tools like Hootsuite or SocialEngage?
  • Is there anything you would add?

 

Crisis Management and Social Media

Last week’s #CMGRclass panel was on Social Media and featured Morgan Johnston from JetBlue, David Yarus from MRY and Nick Cicero from LiveFyre as guests.

This panel was the second of three panels with the first on Online Content. One of the things that I thought worked better this time than the first time was that the guests interacted with each other outside of answering questions and jumping off one each other’s comments. The panel felt like more of a conversation between friends and colleagues than a Q&A; which allowed for a less formal atmosphere and yielded some interesting stories.

My favourite topic of conversation for the evening came towards the end of the night when Jenn asked them about crisis management. Jenn suggested they share an example of an “ultimate crisis” or how they were able to avoid one.

crisis management

Crisis Management courtesy of Kevin Krejci.

Yarus had an interesting perspective on crisis management, he works with “communities of influencers,” and the crises he handles are different than those of Johnston at JetBlue but one of the things I took away from his discussion on crisis management was the way he described the way he likes to handle them:

“We’re all people on this side of the screen and on that side of the screen, and I really try to influence that way within my team.”

The example of a “crisis” Yarus gave was when students began tweeting about a brand and the response was that the client didn’t want them and didn’t approved of them. Yarus then goes into a discussion on how easy it was for him to get in contact with the posters by texting them, explaining the situation and the tweets disappearing:

“We’re all people. I think we need to break down the barrier of ‘you need to send a formal email’ or send a formal letter, like, no, text them. That’s how I would want to be contacted…treat people as they are and I think you’ll get real results.”

Johnston had a much different take on crisis management and how social media is roped into an emergency response plan because it’s usually the “first indicator of an event or accident.” He hared a story of how he spent one Tuesday afternoon when he discovered a tweet from a customer describing how one of the flight attendants cursed out the whole plane and quit on the spot. He described that the crisis was handled by saying, roughly, “look, we know you’re interested, here’s what we can and can not tell you and here’s why we can’t tell you.” Like Yarus’ response to a crisis, I thought this was handled well – this acknowledges a problem, addresses it and shares as much information as possible so it doesn’t keep curious people in the dark.

Cicero had another interesting story to tell of how he was working with a company that had Subway as a client when they announced that Michael Vick had won Sportsman of the Year, shortly after leaving jail. Cicero describes receiving a “flood of negative comments all over the Facebook page, nonstop” and says the comments continued for month or two after the event. Cicero describes that the way the management team handled the crisis was to delete any posts that violated the rules and told his team not to respond to anything, that the PR team would handle everything.

Let me know in the comments below if you’ve heard of any crises taking place in a company that you think was handled well or could have been handled better.