The following post is part of the Mindjumpers Network series and written by Brand Care Manager, Marlene Friis. Mindjumpers Network is a global platform of local country Community Managers, enabling international companies to execute and maintain brand communities in a structured, quality assured and cost effective way across markets with the aim of creating effect and value.
Being a global brand wanting to practice local community management, might seem like quite an unmanageable challenge. And it is most certainly not a job that is to be randomly put into the hands of just anybody! An increasing number of agencies are now offering global social media services to their clients, e.g. managing multiple Facebook communities across several markets for global brands. But having multilingual employees in your office, does not solve this task in the most optimal way. Managing a community is not just about getting the language right: It’s about capturing that uniquely local feeling, culture and context, which only a native Community Manager positioned in the local market is able to do.
Having a Community Manager present in the specific market not only enhances your chances for building closer relationships with potential consumers. It also secures that your online communication strategy is in alignment with the way your brand/product is actually perceived in the local market. Several factors are playing a role at this point, such as the language, the culture and the tracking of real-time happenings. In addition, the Local Community Manager needs to feel passionated about and love the brand, thereby also functioning as a brand ambassador.
Making a match!
Through Mindjumpers Network, we see the first step in helping a brand activate locally as finding the perfect Local Community Manager. It is about matching the brand with the candidate that is considered the most suitable one of all. It should not only be a candidate holding the right educational background or working experience. It should also be a candidate positioned in the given market in which the brand is aiming to execute locally. A candidate of the right gender and the right age who is able to understand what you are offering your customers in that particular market.
Let’s take an example: If you are aiming to do local community management for your young, hip brand, mainly directed to women, it does not make much sense hiring an older, male Community Manager, not able to relate to the brand identity by “living the brand”. The age, gender and personal characteristics all have an impact in order for the candidate to manage the fine balance of speaking on behalf of the brand while also taking the consumer perspective into consideration. A Brand Manager needs to feel confident that the Community Manager understands how to use the right tone-of-voice, ensuring that the brand message is well communicated and properly interpreted by the local community. The Community Manager carries part of the responsibility on how the brand/product is represented, which further emphasizes the importance of making a perfect match!
Improving further through on-going training
To continuously securing that the Local Community Manager is up-to-date with new developments within social media (especially the Facebook platform) and brand related news, we see on-going knowledge sharing as another valuable step through Mindjumpers Network.
By having an online platform, it is ensured that the Local Community Managers constantly develop and improve their knowledge on how to manage a community, as well as management of their communities can continuously be adjusted according to previous learnings and performance measures for the brand in the local market. In this way, a strong connection between the brand and the Local Community Manager is maintained. Furthermore, the Local Community Manager feels even more as part of the brand, which is a valuable element for a person already loving and “living the brand”.
Read more about Mindjumpers Network here.
How would you execute a local community management strategy for a global brand?