Tag Archive for editorial calendar

Agency Advice From a Community Manager “Lens”

Have you ever had your favorite brand reply to you on Twitter? Have you then taken a screenshot of this tweet and posted it to Facebook where over 100 of your friends liked it? Well then maybe you have a community manager to thank for the best part of your week. Now, you may think the man or woman who responded to your brand-praising tweet is an in-house community manager, but these days more companies outsource community management to agencies.

Who’s the Subject?

This week I had the chance to speak with Emily Maupai, an agency-based community manager in New Jersey. Emily currently works at 3E Public Relations, which is an affiliate of SGW Integrated Marketing Communications, one of the Garden State’s leading integrated marketing communications firms. After receiving a B.A. in Advertising from Rowan University, Emily now manages many consumer and B2B clients in industries such as health and beauty, restaurant, food and beverage, franchising, automotive, telecommunications, broadcast, and financial services.

Screen Shot 2014-03-06 at 4.22.23 PM

A screenshot of my FaceTime interview with Emily

I was actually able to intern for this marketing communications company a few years ago, and I know first-hand the hard work and dedication she has put into her work to build communities for her clients. Specifically, I spoke with Emily about one of her clients that she describes as a “professional lens company.” (For privacy sake, the company asked that specific information about their clients be withheld)

Why User Generated Content is the Best Kind of Content

As Emily has been growing the brand of this client for two years, the brand has become an opinion leader of the professional broadcast and cinema community. But what kind of content does she post to keep her community engaged? As discussed in class, it is important to decide if user generated content is the right fit for your website. For Emily’s client, the answer to that question is yes. Because her community is very heavy in content creation she always asks them to share what kind of projects they are working on and to share any behind-the-scenes shots they are legally allowed to post, and she says they normally do.

Author Richard Millington of Buzzing Communities supports this method as he says, “The best content for a community is content about the community.” When users are sharing these personal, behind-the-scenes shots it makes the page about the people in the community, instead of a solely a big advertisement for the brand. It also provides a reason for members to visit the page every day; to see if their content was featured, or just to see any new content from their online friends.

(2012, 01 03). Calendar-Clip-Art-Free [Web Photo]. Retrieved from www.schoolforlittlepeople.com

(2012, 01 03). Calendar-Clip-Art-Free [Web Photo]. Retrieved from www.schoolforlittlepeople.com

Plan For Success

Emily and her team emphasize the role of an editorial calendar. Specifically, they try to plan out a month’s worth of content so that they are always prepared, but also they leave room for timely and relevant news breaks.This allows the brand to embody all of Social Fresh’s benefits of an editorial calendar by being timely, organized, and professional. Emily also values having a positive relationship with her client, and she has noticed that the brand team appreciates seeing what you are going to put on the web on their behalf before it goes live.

What’s the Best Part of Being a Community Manager?

To end the interview I thought it would be fun to ask Emily what her favorite part of her job is. She summed it up nicely by saying she enjoys connecting people and helping them more easily find the information they are looking for on the web.

Questions for the Audience

  • Is the community management industry moving more towards agencies?
  • Do you believe it is helpful to have a community manager that is removed from the all-consuming, in-house brand environment?
  • Do you agree with Emily’s client approval process, where they send the planned posts to the brand before they hit the web?

Let me know in the comments below!

What do magazine journalists and community managers have in common?

photo

http://www.flickr.com/photos/angelabowman/8450025763/

Entering college in 2009, I knew I wanted to be a magazine journalist. My ultimate goal was to create a magazine that caters to all women of color. Although still a passion of mine, I am exploring other fields to broaden my perspective on the vast world of communications.

In doing the #cmgrclass readings for this week, I found a lot of commonalities in how community managers and magazine staff writers and editors prepare for content creation.

Throughout this post, I am going to focus specifically on the editorial calendar. All major publications have an editorial calendar in which the staff refers to before going to print. It’s essentially the element that keeps publications structured and organized. Our readings have indicated that community managers also use this method to ensure consistency when writing compelling and engaging content.

Editorial calendars allow community managers to plan ahead. This will prevent the infamous writer’s block in the future. When you have a clear direction it’s much simpler when it comes to creating stories to share with your community. The calendar will also help community managers foster short and long terms goals for the evolution and progression of the community in the future.

In the documentary released in 2009 called “The September Issue” director R.J. Culter explores the most anticipated Vogue magazine issue of the year—the September issue. Readers and subscribers also informally know this issue as the fashion issue. Anna Wintour, editor-in-chief, is frequently captured referring to the editorial calendar in preparing for the publication’s largest issue of the year. The Vogue editorial calendar helps her see the completion of particular projects, look ahead to see what needs to be tackled, and continually track progress until the issue goes to the publishers.

In essence, community managers are doing the same when creating an editorial calendar. They will have an opportunity to delegate responsibility based on the number of incomplete components of a blog, oversee which tasks are currently in the works, and see if there’s room to address current topics that may happen throughout the year. In using this method, community managers allow room to create themes around the content they produce, which has the potential to attract advertisers. Planning ahead gives community managers time to carefully construct topics and pick an angle that will further engage members.

Like magazine journalists, community managers are expected to use a conversational writing style. Therefore, users feel an urge to comment and inquire about specifics. Community managers and magazine journalists also have to understand the difference between timeliness and timeless works. Covering current topics in a timely manner is important. You’re users want to have access to the information while it’s still relevant. Otherwise, they will look to other sources for the most up-to-date information.  It is also crucial to produce pieces that are timeless, meaning no matter the time frame, the information contained in the post can be useful and applied even years after it has been published.

As a community manager, do you use an editorial calendar? If not, in which ways do you manage the content being posted to your site? Share your stories with the #cmgrclass!

Everyone Blogs – And So Should You!

This week we take a look at blogging and how its use has risen over the past decade. A “blog” is an abbreviation for “web log” that allows a user (such as business rep, private individual, or ad agency) to post content that is available to everyone on the World Wide Web. Many businesses are currently using blogs to keep their audiences informed about the current state of their business. The popularity of blogs has risen substantially over the years, which has increased the need for companies to establish their own blogs throughout the Internet.

According to Joe Pulizzi’s guide, blogging has been a steadily increasing practice for most companies. Business-to-business marketers increased their use of blogs by 27%, making blogs the 3rd most common content marketing activity. The ubiquity of the Internet is responsible for such growth, which is now requiring companies to establish an online presence through the use of popular blogging systems such as Word Press.

Costs and Maintenance

6355220839_982b1263d5_mHow much is this going to cost my company? I’m sure that’s a common question asked by many business owners when deciding to create a blog. Referring to the previously mentioned guide, there are several aspects that need to be taken into account when attempting to calculate a cost for the blog. Depending on the types of platforms you use or resources that are employed, the costs can vary greatly. Some factors that will affect costs are the following:

  • Company size
  • Location (taxes, regulations, etc…)
  • Are you hiring in-house or outsourcing to an agency?
  • How much content is being posted and managed?
  • Hosting fees / ISP fees

According to Jay Baer’s article, calculating the cost and ROI for your blog can be done in 9 steps. The specific calculations are listed in the article (see link above), but seem to concentrate on assertions of how many hours per month your resources are spending on the blog management.

Overall, blogs are great way to inform and interact with your audience about content that’s relevant to your company and customers. This is a popular tool that is being used by companies around the world to establish a more direct relationship with their community of users.

327122302_bbc4a3935b_mWhere’s the content? Planning your community…

We’ve already discussed the benefits of having an active blog in your community, but what about internal management of content generation? How are you going to plan for future content? When will it be posted and made available to the community? When will the community post content?

Say hello to the editorial calendar. The benefits of the editorial calendar can be found here. The editorial calendar allows community managers to stay focused on mid to long term goals and provide members with regular initiatives to drive content creation. Such calendars can promote teamwork and allow for easy delegation of tasks.

In Closing…

Overall, blogs are a popular trend that is not going away any time soon. There are many different services on the net that enable a business to create a blog, but there are many steps needed to make it successful. The referenced guides promoted the concepts of successful blog posting and content generation that a business can use to further develop its online community via blogs.