Here at 3sixfive, we understand the importance of providing top-quality Community Management all year round. As the world of social media evolves and expands, users are spending more and more time on platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, adding to the ever-growing list of online spaces in which brands can reach their customers. However, those all important posts and messages don’t stop during evenings, weekends and holidays - that’s why it’s essential to implement a consistent Community Management strategy so that your business never misses any key opportunities to interact.
Community Management refers to the process of building and maintaining a community of people on social media who each connect with your brand in some way. They can be customers, guests and visitors, staff members, influencers or even just fans of your product or service. By managing and interacting with this community, your business gets the chance to network, provide customer service, make sales, control its reputation and ultimately establish a sense of brand love amongst its followers instead of leaving them feeling disconnected or ignored.
It’s also a valuable way to gather honest feedback, especially through the use of tools like Social Listening, where you can monitor and join in with conversations taking place about your brand online which may otherwise go unnoticed.
When putting together a Community Management strategy for your business it’s important to remember that your customers and fans will likely be spread out across a wide variety of different social media platforms. Although Facebook might be your primary community channel, for example, users on Instagram may also wish to engage with your brand - so it’s best to interact in as many places as possible, tailoring your tone of voice and response style to suit the best practices of each one.
You may even discover that your fans become more active at varied times throughout the day or week depending on the platform. For instance, with Linkedin being a professional networking space, it makes sense for users to post and interact during standard business hours, whereas sites like Twitter see increases in usage during downtimes such as breaks and commutes. According to this article from Neil Patel, weekends are a top time on Twitter for B2C businesses, demonstrating the need for out-of-hours Community Management.
Data from Facebook found that it sees a 26% increase in posts, photos and videos uploaded over the period between November and January, making the festive season an essential time of year for brands to get involved with their communities. While it may seem tempting to log off mid-December and wait until you return in the New Year to pick up any incoming messages and comments, being absent from your social media accounts during this crucial time could lead to significant engagements - and potentially even sales - being missed.
For businesses in the hospitality industry in particular, times such as bank holidays and Easter are often especially busy too, with guests and tourists wanting to book tables, arrange hotel stays and share feedback about their meals, drinks and experiences on social media. Don’t miss out on these key opportunities to build brand love and provide customer support by leaving their queries unanswered - implement a reliable Community Management strategy that covers every eventuality.
Another pivotal reason to provide Community Management 365 days a year is to keep on top of any PR disasters that may break out on social media and could be harmful to your brand’s reputation. Things move fast online - Hootsuite states here that more than a quarter of crises spread internationally within just one hour.
Whether the case is a food poisoning allegation at your restaurant, a dissatisfied former employee speaking negatively about their time working with you, or simply a post sent out by your business with unknowingly controversial wording, it’s imperative that you intervene and respond in an appropriate and timely manner, in order to avoid the situation escalating. Dilemmas like these can gain traction at any time, even outside of your business’ usual days of operation. Therefore, if you aren’t around to take control of what’s being said, your brand image risks being tarnished - not only in the eyes of its existing customers and fans, but its prospective ones too.