Trend: Some Community Management Activities to be Outsourced

As we continue to conduct research in the social business arena, it’s important to point out the trends in the space. In particular, a role that is so key to success for customer engagement (marketing and service) is the challenging (and often under-appreciated) community manager role.  Lately, I’ve found a few trends that community managers (and their bosses) need to be aware of, as the space continues to grow.

Third Party Community Management Specialists On The Rise:
Here’s what we’ve been seeing based on a few briefings and interactions I’ve taken in the past few months: 

  • Recently, I spoke to a group of community managers at Weber Shandwick (invited by Stephanie Agresta) a communications agency, they work closely with their clients and are often representing the brand on behalf of the client who is unable to scale with limited resources. They also offer an interesting service called Firebell which simulates crises in a safe environment.
  • A few days ago, I was briefed by Cap Gemini who offers BPO (Business Process Outsourcing, a term I’ve found most on the marketing side don’t know), and they are partnered with Attensity (software) to provide community management services and support.
  • While many community platforms offer CM services, Liveworld (client) has focus here and, is one of the seasoned mainstays in community management and offers services (and software) to brands that seek community management services on demand.
  • I’ve been briefed by Sean O’Driscoll at Ant’s Eye View and they offer a range of services at the strategy level for their clients but also offers community management and analytics services.
  • A few weeks back, Chief Strategy Officer Peter Kim from Dachis group briefed Altimeter on their various strategy, implementation services, including community management as a managed service.

Altimeter Data Shows Staff and Agency Spend Top Spends
If you look at Altimeter spending data in Social Business, we already see a significant amount of revenues going to internal staff as well as agency folks, and it’s interesting to see how boutique social media agencies overtake traditional agencies in spending, I’m seeing an increase of community management staff be on demand from agency and third party side.

Expect Emerging Markets to Offer BPO Services, Outsourcing Some Activities
Last year, I went out to Manila to meet with the local web, agency, and business groups, and met some folks who work within the established BPO industry, most of these companies are known to manage the overseas call centers that you speak to for customer support. While I found they were not ready for ‘social support’ I’m starting to get briefings and hearing how they are gearing up to move into outsourced community management.  Based upon my experience, I see a range of Community Management services, I’m open to adding to this, based upon your feedback:


Matrix: Four Levels of Community Management Services:

Activity What it looks like Trends
4) Strategy Often behind the scenes, they lead the overall strategy of how customers fit into multiple business units. Often does reporting and responsible for return on investment. This activity is likely to stay within the corporation as they have understanding of business goals, and key relationships
3) Brand Representation Represents the story of the brand (and of course that of customers) and is often a primary face of the company in online communities on an ongoing basis. Often within the corporation, sometimes this role is being held by agency partners, such as “Jenny at Axe” who was a full time Edelman employee.
2) Member Response Responds to frequent product inquiries such as “Do you have this or that?” or “Does anyone know how to X” Often this is being served by a Product Marketing Manager, Product Manager, or Customer service representative –all who have been trained and know where knowledge is. Like other customer service channels, expect more of this role to be shifted to third-parties.
1) Moderation, Curation, Analytics Often behind the scenes, this group reviews content, and conducts triage for the content. They also may curate content and conduct basic reporting. Frequently, I’m hearing these skills are being leveraged by outsourced providers as they have minimal impact to customer relationships, I expect this to continue



Expect A Change in Community Management Sourcing:
The one constant of business is that it is always changing.  Due to weak financial markets and inability for most to measure social business, scrutiny of resources is always top of mind, as a result, expect the following trends: 

  • An increase in offerings of community management services from “emerging” markets. While in many cases, I’ve found that community managers are often in the brand or agency side that are close to the corporate HQ, expect to see an increase of service providers from Philippines, India, and perhaps in South America.  They’ve over a decade of experience managing customer service operations for brands on channels like phone –and can benefit to use channels accents won’t be a distraction to the customer experience.
  • Brands to continue to outsource some community manager activities –while strategic skills stay in house. Expect that brands will outsource activities such as moderation/curation and often reporting, and rely on knowledge workers who have specific product information or key client relationships to stay close to the brand.  In the case of a few companies who enter the “holistic” formation, they will enable thousands of employees to respond –spreading the role across the company.
  • Backlash from embedded community managers –yet savvy will “skill up” now. While we see that the number of social media accounts a brand has to manage on the rise (data), this trend won’t be met without opposition, in fact, many voiced their concern on my Google+ page how outsourcing key relationships between brands and customers is what gets companies into hot waters in the first place.  Yet, I expect many community managers to move into high echelon activities such as community programming on the content side, reporting and analytics, and learning to manage outsourced teams.

While I’m no longer in a community role (I used to be on brand side for social media), I wanted to provide my perspective from my vantage point.  Lastly, remember that Community Manager Appreciation Day is every fourth Monday in Jan, every year (this coming Monday, Jan 24th 2012), and should be used to celebrate all community managers, whether on brand side, agency, or outsourced.

Update: Taking a briefing from Crowdflower that have some of these services, but it must go through their platform and API. They do crowdsourced BPO

91 Replies to “Trend: Some Community Management Activities to be Outsourced”

  1. Great post Jeremiah. Let’s say from the outset that I’m with Synthesio and we have an Engagement platform (Unity) that is used both by brands and outsourced customer centres (BPOs).
    My experience is that – although we’re still in the early days – BPOs are understanding the growing importance of social media interaction and they’re using it (a bit timidly though) as a differentiator of their offering. It’s a ruthless world that of call centres / BPOs, so they really need some differentiators and competitive advantage. Brands are a bit confused about all the catch-phrases, Social CRM being possibly the supreme one at the moment, but they’re getting the gist of what social media monitoring and engagement can do for them. Especially when ROI comes in quickly and conspicuously (after all ROI still makes everyone happy, CFOs and CMOs alike). All in all I guess that you got it right by calling this a trend, which I believe has legs and will go on for a while before becoming best practice shared by most brands.

  2. Good post here, Jeremiah, and thanks for including LiveWorld as an example. We’re seeing similar market trends based on our own conversations and client projects, including the outsourcing of some (or all) portions of social customer service to agencies. There are many brands for which outsourcing their “voice” just isn’t appropriate; but even in those cases, agencies can still manage less public — but still important! — tasks, including basic content moderation and brand response, insight tagging, and analytics. This can be particularly helpful when brands have neither the manpower nor expertise to manage this work themselves. 

  3. Good post here, Jeremiah, and thanks for including LiveWorld as an example. We’re seeing similar market trends based on our own conversations and client projects, including the outsourcing of some (or all) portions of social customer service to agencies. There are many brands for which outsourcing their “voice” just isn’t appropriate; but even in those cases, agencies can still manage less public — but still important! — tasks, including basic content moderation and brand response, insight tagging, and analytics. This can be particularly helpful when brands have neither the manpower nor expertise to manage this work themselves. 

  4. Great post Jeremiah! At The Community Roundtable we think of some of the activities likely to be (or already) outsourced as “moderation” work, not community management. It makes sense for this activity to continue to move to 3rd parties, imho. As far as the other components of the role, I’d encourage companies to take a close look at their goals/strategy before moving it to a 3rd party. When we talk with our members it’s clear that they evolve their view of the community/social opportunities for their business based on their 360-view of the current initiatives. I’m not sure this would happen if they weren’t as plugged into the day-to-day activities. 

    As you point out, it’s important for community managers to continually grow and evolve their skills to move into a more strategic role in their organization. We’re biased, but we see TheCR as an essential resource for community managers that want to “skill up”, as you call it. We’re fortunate to have a well rounded membership that’s willing to share their experiences, giving all members a unique perspective into the evolving role of community management. 

    Thanks for turning the spotlight on this important topic. 

    Jim Storer
    Co-Founder
    The Community Roundtable

  5. I agree that most outsourced work is not going to be the community managing part of the job. I would never outsource the ‘brand representation’ part of my job, but I would be willing to pass along the tech support & troubleshooting part. A really important part of my job is to be the face of the brand and give the abstract brand identity a concrete face and personality. On the other hand, I’m the face of the community within the company and like you said, I need a 360-view of that community in order to truly represent their interests. I think that outsourcing is more about the community manager learning how to scale while still remaining the community manager. 

  6. Jim keep up the good work.  I’ve referencing your team’s work to a few community managers agreed, they must “Skill up” and get more advanced skills –and learn to outsource non-strategic activities. 

  7. Thanks Tera

    Many brands (like Axe body products) have worked with their agencies that are representing them with success.   I think we’re already seeing this happen for some time.

  8. Thank you Fabio. where are most of the BPOs located at that you’re working with?  

    What percentage are they using the new media channels compared to traditional?

  9. Yes, I should have mentioned that I’m speaking from startup experience and I’m guessing that large brands would handle community management, and outsourcing, in a much different way.

  10. So, if read another way, it seems as if the community management business is already becoming commoditized — yet with smaller margins? That doesn’t make it sound like a business many firms would want to get into right now. Or am I misreading this?

  11. So, if read another way, it seems as if the community management business is already becoming commoditized — yet with smaller margins? That doesn’t make it sound like a business many firms would want to get into right now. Or am I misreading this?

  12. France and UK (with multiple locations, including off-shore). In terms of percentage it’s hard to tell, but among the big players a good – say – 33% are equipped (or in the process to) with the technology to do real-time engagement. And of those there a 50-50 slip between partnerships (like Capgemini) and development of their own IT solution.

  13. Yes and know.  Day to day operations can be shifted to third parties, but community strategists think bigger –they want to get all of their employees and customers to participate –that scales. 

  14. Thanks David, I liked how Edelman provided real engagement (we watched closely) while being true to the brand, and disclosing the relationship.  Good practice. 

  15. Hi Jeremiah,

    The Japanese company has been primarily focused on Japanese sites with a focus on Facebook and Twitter in addition to communities. They are now moving into English moderation and are looking for large scale communities to moderate. They set up an english Facebook page (http://www.facebook.com/GaiaX.Official.EN) as a start. They’ve contact us and several of our competitors to partner.

    Their approach, as well as others from emerging markets such as UAE and Brazil is similar to those that did the same from India in early 2000. They want the tasks that most community managers want to outsource – post review, site support for users, and measurement.

    Mike

  16. Hi Jeremiah,

    The Japanese company has been primarily focused on Japanese sites with a focus on Facebook and Twitter in addition to communities. They are now moving into English moderation and are looking for large scale communities to moderate. They set up an english Facebook page (http://www.facebook.com/GaiaX.Official.EN) as a start. They’ve contact us and several of our competitors to partner.

    Their approach, as well as others from emerging markets such as UAE and Brazil is similar to those that did the same from India in early 2000. They want the tasks that most community managers want to outsource – post review, site support for users, and measurement.

    Mike

  17. What metrics do companies typically use to gauge performance of outsourced providers in community management activities?

  18. I’m having a hard time wrapping my head around outsourcing community engagement.  And yeah I get, but it sounds counterproductive in the long tail.  And who builds a community and then distances themselves from it in terms of hands-on immersion?  What’s the point?  This sounds like the marketing mind of a brand trying to be social vs. just being social.  

    I understand and acknowledge that communities grow and become labor-intensive if built upon a solid foundation (i.e., value proposition for members) which ultimately demands even more time and attention to its needs, but to outsource your conversation is to essentially raise your finger off the pulse of that very same community you so passionately founded, and if there’s no passion in it you are most definitely a marketeer and others may not see it but they’ll inevitably feel it.

    Let’s focus on authenticity.  Let’s do the work ourselves.  Let’s speak from our own mouths and from those closest to the brand.

  19. This is in line with what I”m seeing. I run the largest personal blogger community for Gen Y on the web, and within have quite a few highly skilled CM types…many of who are acting effectively as outsourced resources. Most of the strategy remains in house…in fact I think that executive level roles will increasingly demand knowledge of the needs that a social/transparent brand demands as it relates to managing community and customers. Community is increasingly a C-Level job description…but the background analytics, planning, responsiveness, and execution are able to be handled by strong third parties.

  20. Agreed, there’s a huge risk here: “hey everyone were social” and then saying “our agency will deal with you”.   

    The question brands must answer (and I hope the Matrix above crystalizes it) is what can we safely outsource without giving away our authenticity, while helping us scale?

  21. It depends on the business objectives.  Communities can be used in many ways, here’s a high level list

    1) Marketing engagement at lifestyle: Like “BeingGirl” which actually is for young women, sponsored by Tampx.  Assume they’d measure intent, sentiment, engagement, and preference/call to action.

    2) Customer advocacy community:  The Microsoft MVP group allows there thousands of top customers to talk to each other, and their goal is to evangelize.  Assume they’d measure spread, velocity, sentiment, and call to action.

    3) Support and Implementation:  Companies like Best Buy’s customer community, they would allow engineers to self support.  Assume they would measure reduced support costs and increased CSAT.

    So there’s 3 examples (I actually have over 15 use cases) hope that helps.

  22. Great breakdown and very timely. I’m seeing the same thing in my day to day and scale is an issue for most large brands. The risk of an unauthentic voice is one to consider, but my larger issue with outsourcing engagement is the lack of transparency. Should it be an option, sure. Does it fit for everyone, no. 

    Community Managers should be able to focus on long-term strategy, but the fight to engage leaves many with their heads in the sand. I’m guilty and constantly find myself in that pickle.

  23. Great breakdown and very timely. I’m seeing the same thing in my day to day and scale is an issue for most large brands. The risk of an unauthentic voice is one to consider, but my larger issue with outsourcing engagement is the lack of transparency. Should it be an option, sure. Does it fit for everyone, no. 

    Community Managers should be able to focus on long-term strategy, but the fight to engage leaves many with their heads in the sand. I’m guilty and constantly find myself in that pickle.

  24. Scary stuff Jeremiah but I really hope outsourcing community management it is NOT a trend .I am with Miles Maker on this one. Surely we should be encouraging engagement to be genuine. Of course there is a role for third parties eg on campaigns, but not as main community manager, perlease.

  25. Hi Jeremiah, thank you for your comments.  I’m looking specifically for metrics that measure the “outsourced provider” scenario.  

    Like Miles, I believe in keeping the authenticity of the conversation.  At the same time, we are thinking that parts of community management can be outsourced (tricky part is to identify the right parts) so we can scale.  So one of the metrics I’m looking to find/build/create is one that provides insight into the impact of outsourced providers in the community– how do they help i.e. better answer rates, how do they hurt i.e. affects peer-to-peer interaction.I think there is something for us to learn in the earlier iterations of outsourcing.  When everyone started outsourcing various processes overseas, it took a while for companies to realize that there has to be a match between need and skill.  There has to be good listening, support structures, and cultural understanding.  And we can’t just throw ingredients over the fence unbaked with no instructions and expect a custom wedding cake to show up.  

    We’re faced with the same challenge in outsourcing community management pieces.  

    What I’d like to hear from this thread are tips and gotchas on the way to outsourcing…when to outsource and when to keep things in-house…how to measure the return on the outsourcing efforts…

  26. Once again, Jeremiah’s ahead of the trend.  I’ve found that there are people with personalities and psychologies that are aligned with building community and others that aren’t.  It’s important that you identify the people in your company that are natural community builders.  If there aren’t any, then your company will actually do better by outsourcing community management to people who love doing it.  

    As long as you’re good about sharing important aspects of your company culture, trends and ongoing news with the outsourced company, and they have passion and expertise for connecting, then you’re business and it’s community will be better off.

  27. 3rd party community managers? How can they truly understand your brand and your culture if they’re not an active part of the team? Depending on your business, how authentic is it to have someone else speak on your behalf? 

    A community manager is your company’s cheerleader. This person is your heart and soul, rah rah sis-boom bah. Can you hire someone else to do it? Sure, that’s why booth-babes can be popular at certain conventions, right? But who is more effective at showing off your product? The product manager who has invested many late nights and weekends for something that they believe in? (You’ve seen ’em, they speak with passion and there’s a certain fire you can see in their eyes.) Or… the marketing agency you’ve just hired and maybe came in for an hour briefing? Sure, the latter might be clean and polished but at the risk of also sounding hollow. 

  28. Thanks for the Plug.

    Not all trends are good trends.  As a strategy and planning firm, Ant’s Eye View helps brands develop the strategy, implementation roadmap and operating model necessary to achieve their social business objectives.  We don’t provide outsourced community management services and actually, we’d generally advise against it.  I understand budgets and pilots may lead to short term trials with contingent resources, but sustained customer engagement is the job of the brand, not the low cost service provider.  If you want a lens to evaluate this, you might draw a continuum on a board.  On one end write Relational and the other end Transactional.  Then write down all the activities your community managers due somewhere on that continuum.  If the activity your community manager does on a day to day basis is on the transactional side (ie, a highly recurring customer support or care issue) your opportunity for success with outsourcing may be fairly high, but if your activities even approach the relational side of the continuum (thought leadership, product feedback, advocate engagement, content authorship, etc.) – well, I wouldn’t even consider an outsourced solution. 

    My 2 cents.
    Sean O’Driscoll
    CEO
    Ant’s Eye View

  29. Thanks for the Plug.

    Not all trends are good trends.  As a strategy and planning firm, Ant’s Eye View helps brands develop the strategy, implementation roadmap and operating model necessary to achieve their social business objectives.  We don’t provide outsourced community management services and actually, we’d generally advise against it.  I understand budgets and pilots may lead to short term trials with contingent resources, but sustained customer engagement is the job of the brand, not the low cost service provider.  If you want a lens to evaluate this, you might draw a continuum on a board.  On one end write Relational and the other end Transactional.  Then write down all the activities your community managers due somewhere on that continuum.  If the activity your community manager does on a day to day basis is on the transactional side (ie, a highly recurring customer support or care issue) your opportunity for success with outsourcing may be fairly high, but if your activities even approach the relational side of the continuum (thought leadership, product feedback, advocate engagement, content authorship, etc.) – well, I wouldn’t even consider an outsourced solution. 

    My 2 cents.
    Sean O’Driscoll
    CEO
    Ant’s Eye View

  30. Community Developer here. 🙂 Here’s how outsourcing should work, it’s about teaching a process to assist individuals and organizations to build communities using social networks and media publishing tools. A sincere Community Manager/Developer/Builder/etc. will take on a new client because she personally connects with the brand and not the invoice.

  31. Are those firebell guys for real Jeremy? I mean the website is kinda lame, and they don’t respond on Twitter either…kind of a weird vibe but that’s just me 🙂

  32. We can also use a little help sometimes. What’s the difference between outsourcing and/or hiring an intern that might only come in for 2 to 4hrs a week then?

  33. We can also use a little help sometimes. What’s the difference between outsourcing and/or hiring an intern that might only come in for 2 to 4hrs a week then?

  34. and why not then build your employees to learn a bit more about social media so that they might naturally want to spread the message across their own individual brands/accts? Right on, Brett!

  35. and why not then build your employees to learn a bit more about social media so that they might naturally want to spread the message across their own individual brands/accts? Right on, Brett!

  36. And are you able to hire more social media staff as your company grows? I feel social media is simply an additional component of customer service, marketing, pr, QA, and even systems engineering all rolled into one. 

    Sure, you can hire someone else to do it, but why not invest more of that effort internally for authenticity? 

  37. Really? That’s quite interesting to hear, Derek. Would you possibly have a few examples of these outsourced community managers for us to see and how they might handle brand engagement?

  38. Agreed, Tyna. Love your wedding cake example! Because yeah.. you’re basically getting married to that outsourced agency when you let them speak on your behalf as you. 

  39. Hi David, so can I ask if Scott continues to stay on as the voice and personality of Slim Jim? Otherwise, what happens when the campaign is over? How authentic and sincere can that be for their brand if one day you have a passionate cheerleader.. and then one morning, nothing? In that case.. would Scott be more of an Edelman resource that is semi-permanently based with Con-Agra? 

  40. Right on, Jim! Great to connect with you through Jessica and @SMC. I’ll have to look into TheCR a bit more. Do you ever come to @JPedde and @KellyLux’s #cmgrchat? I’ve seen a lot of great ideas exchanged every week. 

  41. Agreed, I’ve really liked your answer, Tera. And Jeremiah.. it would seem as if these outsourced agencies might be quite similar to recruiters then in simply providing a temp-to-perm resource. At least, it’s hard for me to understand how a third party can truly capture a brand’s voice if they’re not on-site and working intimately with that company. 

  42. I have been to #cmgrchat a bunch of times (although not as much recently). Both my biz partner Rachel Happe and I try to join in as often as possible. We’re doing our best to help keep the CM role strategic. Check us out and let me know if you want to chat. 

  43. We’re seeing a huge rise in brands giving agencies such as ours more of a community management support role. I think it’s perfectly possible to speak on behalf of the brand as long as there is a close relationship with the business, and clear guidelines from the brand on overall strategy and tone of voice, which is usually developed in-house albeit often with agency help. There are the same advantages to using an agency as there are in other fields – bringing current thinking and experience from other businesses or markets, and out of hours or round-the clock management, for example. Often we’ll work with the brands to help them develop the communities themselves, and we always work very closely with the brand’s in-house community managers and / or their agencies.

    Good community managers can be briefed to do a fantastic job whether in-house or outsourced. Either way, the person (or people) who talk on behalf of the brand need to work in close partnership across a number of functions – not just marketing or PR. Community managers span customer service, sales, marketing, product development and the crisis team. The important thing isn’t where a community manager works, but how.  

    Blaise Grimes-Viort
    Head of Community Management
    http://www.emoderation.com

  44. We’re seeing a huge rise in brands giving agencies such as ours more of a community management support role. I think it’s perfectly possible to speak on behalf of the brand as long as there is a close relationship with the business, and clear guidelines from the brand on overall strategy and tone of voice, which is usually developed in-house albeit often with agency help. There are the same advantages to using an agency as there are in other fields – bringing current thinking and experience from other businesses or markets, and out of hours or round-the clock management, for example. Often we’ll work with the brands to help them develop the communities themselves, and we always work very closely with the brand’s in-house community managers and / or their agencies.

    Good community managers can be briefed to do a fantastic job whether in-house or outsourced. Either way, the person (or people) who talk on behalf of the brand need to work in close partnership across a number of functions – not just marketing or PR. Community managers span customer service, sales, marketing, product development and the crisis team. The important thing isn’t where a community manager works, but how.  

    Blaise Grimes-Viort
    Head of Community Management
    http://www.emoderation.com

  45. We’re seeing a huge rise in brands giving agencies such as ours more of a community management support role. I think it’s perfectly possible to speak on behalf of the brand as long as there is a close relationship with the business, and clear guidelines from the brand on overall strategy and tone of voice, which is usually developed in-house albeit often with agency help. There are the same advantages to using an agency as there are in other fields – bringing current thinking and experience from other businesses or markets, and out of hours or round-the clock management, for example. Often we’ll work with the brands to help them develop the communities themselves, and we always work very closely with the brand’s in-house community managers and / or their agencies.

    Good community managers can be briefed to do a fantastic job whether in-house or outsourced. Either way, the person (or people) who talk on behalf of the brand need to work in close partnership across a number of functions – not just marketing or PR. Community managers span customer service, sales, marketing, product development and the crisis team. The important thing isn’t where a community manager works, but how.  

    Blaise Grimes-Viort
    Head of Community Management
    http://www.emoderation.com

  46. Great article, Jeremiah, and on a topic (Community Management) that is long overdue for discussion and analysis.  As is so often the case, the uncertainty of definition presents a hurdle to understanding and I think the matrix is a great starting point. 
    Some thoughts on enhancements to the matrix:
    1. It would help to expand the “Trends” into Trends of Ownership and Trends of Execution e.g. Brand Representation could be Owned by the company yet Executed by an agency.  The outsourcing potential is in the execution rather than ownership.
    2. Moderation, Curation and Analytics should be split into 2 i.e. Moderation + (Curation and Analytics) or even into 3 as the associated activities are very different.  I interpret moderation as ensuring that everybody “plays nicely together” and only those who should participate are allowed to do so.  Curation and Analytics are about the management and usage of the content that is created by/for the community.
    3. We should consider adding an activity of Content Creation to the matrix.  This would fit with Curation and Analytics so that we complete content lifecycle:  Creation, Curation, Analytics (and Sunset?)

    I suggest that the extent to which outsourcing of some of the Community Management activities will occur will be dependent on a varity of factors including:
    – the extent to which the community is focused on being a general meeting place for people to interact on a topic
    – a forum for customers to provide input and feedback to a company and to other customers i.e. a customer service community
    - the extent to which a company wants to present its brand and its thinking while excluding competitors i.e. a marketing community 
    – the degree to which the community is designed to be a “member response” vehicle i.e. another customer service community

    This discussion thread is just scratching the surface of Community Management but I am delightred to see that it has started, and that is generating so much discussion. 

  47. Fabio, engagement is primarily on social platforms such as Facebook & Twitter but would extend to site/blog or Tumblr as well. Same for message boards if appropriate. 

  48. I run my own community at Crowdbooster, and it already feels a little shallow because the kind of interactions you have with your community is very brief on social media. I strive to meet my community in-person at events, talk with them on the phone, etc. I can’t imagine outsourcing this type of work.

    I agree with Sean O’Driscoll that you can probably outsource some of the customer support, but what these new social media channels are enabling us to do is to represent ourselves authentically to our customers and build a trusting relationship with them by being present, share our expertise, and help them when we can. That I don’t think can be outsourced.I think technology can scale to make things easier for the community managers (we’re working on this at Crowdbooster). Eager to see more discussion about this. When you outsource, I don’t think you’re going to be able to respond to your customers within a reasonable time, you’re also not going to be able to create the most relevant content because the context is changing too quickly. The outsourced operation will need to get approval every step of the way about what to say, and that’s not sustainable.

  49. Pingback: Quora
  50. Mike, would love to read some of case studies.
    China is an emerging market for many industries. Any potentials or obstacles there for community management?

  51. Mike, would love to read more case studies.What’s your thought about China? It’s becoming a huge market for many global brands yet the idea of “branding” and strategies are less popular. What’s your thought on outsourcing (if doable) community management to China?

  52. I’ll attest to Ricky Yean as a true community-builder. I appreciated the time he took to meet me in person as he was visiting the LA area. I like that he is very accessible and I think @Crowdbooster does a great job of hosting #SMOChat on Tuesdays each week.

  53. Pingback: PPC Network
  54. Pingback: twitter expert
  55. Pingback: Exercise Man Boobs
  56. Pingback: Remove Man Boobs

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *