The Community Manager's Playbook: How to Build Brand Awareness and Customer Engagement

  • 5h 41m
  • Lauren Perkins
  • Apress
  • 2015

Savvy companies recognize the value of a strong community. Think of Nike and its community of runners, Nike+, and you’ll quickly understand that creating and fostering an online community around a product or brand is a powerful way to boost marketing efforts, gain valuable insight into consumers, increase revenue, improve consumer loyalty, and enhance customer service efforts.

Companies now have the unprecedented opportunity to integrate their brand’s messaging into the everyday lives of their target audiences. But while supporting the growth of online communities should be at the top of every company’s priority list, all too often it falls by the wayside. That’s why brand strategy expert and digital marketer Lauren Perkins wrote The Community Manager’s Playbook (#CMplaybook on Twitter), a must-read guide for business and brand builders who need to strengthen their approach to online B2C community management and customer engagement.

As Perkins explains, if companies want to create thriving online communities focused on their product or brand, they must do more than simply issue a few tweets a day, create (and then abandon) a Facebook page, and blog every once in a while. Instead, organizations of all sizes must treat community management as a central component of their overall marketing strategy. When they do, they will be rewarded handsomely with greater brand awareness, increased customer use and retention, lower acquisition costs, and a tribe of consumers who can’t wait to purchase their next product.

Perkins not only teaches readers how to build an engaging community strategy from the ground up, but she also provides them with the tactical community management activities they need to acquire and retain customers, create compelling content, and track their results along the way. Distinctive in its comprehensive, step-by-step approach to creating online communities that are fully consistent with a company’s existing brand voice, The Community Manager’s Playbook:

  • Explains how excellent community management provides a competitive advantage with a large impact on sales
  • Provides an in-depth overview of brand and business alignment
  • Teaches readers how to identify their community's online target audience and influence their needs and wants
  • Details the appropriate online channels through which content should be distributed
  • Champions the use of an agile approach through repeated testing to maximize the return on every company investment
  • Discusses the many diverse metrics that can be used to measure community scope

Today, there is no brand strategy without a community strategy. Companies that are not developing communities are losing control of their brands and missing opportunities to optimize their marketing investments. With The Community Manager’s Playbook as their guide, however, marketing professionals and the companies and brands they represent will be equipped with the tools they need to manage their online marketing efforts, engage their core customers at every level, leverage community insights into the product development cycle, and ensure that their messaging is heard across all corners of the digital landscape.

What you’ll learn

  • How to create an online community and entice new members to join the conversation
  • The online locales where you can and should be hosting your community
  • Why content is essential to community and how to determine what types of content will best fit the needs and wants of your consumers
  • Why community can be a tremendous source of consumer insight
  • How knowing what your customers need, want, and expect of you will ensure that your brand consistently delivers on its implied promises
  • How to develop a holistic community strategy and effectively manage resources through an agile approach
  • The tactical frameworks to support execution of a community strategy
  • How to define the role of community manager and hire for it

Who this book is for

The Community Manager's Playbook will prove indispensable to the supervisors of community managers, including brand managers and marketing hiring managers and directors, who are overseeing marketing and communication strategies and staffing for an existing corporation, agency, or client. Similarly, the book will appeal to entrepreneurial professionals who are developing their company's business and brand strategies and are in need of best practices to increase the scope of their brand marketing and community management knowledge. Finally, individuals who are learning the community manager role on the job and those who are trying to find a job as a community manager will find The Community Manager's Playbook to be an invaluable resource.

About the Author

Lauren Perkins is a motivational coach, digital evangelist, and brand marketer who devotes her energy to helping individuals and companies unearth and implement solutions that will make a difference in their businesses and lives. After beginning her career as a journalist at a local paper, Perkins was asked to join The Boston Globe, where she learned the necessity of asking hard-hitting questions, assessing the entire landscape, and diving deep to understand the why behind each story. That philosophical approach has endured Perkins's career shift to experiential marketing, brand management, and digital technology, topics that she consults on at Perks Consulting, which she opened in 2008 to modernize the intersection of technology and lifestyle. With the goal of providing holistic, consumer-centric strategies, Perks works closely with every client including eDiets, Laura Mercier, Cookstr, and Pfizer to align brand with business, products with platforms, and marketing with media. In addition, Perkins is a leading instructor at General Assembly, New York's largest technology and entrepreneurship campus. Currently she can be found leading classes on Community Management, User Acquisition, and Brand-centric Business Strategy.

In this Book

  • What is Community Management?
  • Not All Communities are Created Equal
  • Hired!
  • How Community Creates Business Value
  • CM Strategy Orientation and Setup
  • The ABCs of Landscape Analysis
  • Listening and Discovery
  • Building and Implementing a Community Management Strategy
  • Designing Community and Social Experiments
  • Performance Tracking and Measurement
  • Primary Platforms
  • Day-to-Day Management of Your Community
  • Storytelling