5 lessons community managers should take from journalists

Since I am a part of this social media/advertising/digital/web/mobile gig, I follow and see a lot of brands on social media just to see what’s happening and what others are doing. As with all things in life, there are both good & not so good examples. Here are my 5 cents on how to work better with your brand(-s) and their content creation process.

1. Specialize

Every now and then somebody comes up with the phrase about how “brands are now media outlets”. Just like every magazine, TV show, radio, newspaper and blog (mostly) cover their own niches and don’t try to be everything to everyone, you too should find the things your brand and it’s followers are standing for and work from there. You can’t be good at everything, so choose your direction, go through with it and review the results. It’s better to be an authority on one or just a few subjects than to be a mediocrity on everything.

2. Research

When you have earned a trust and a community, you can’t afford to lose it. Whenever publishing anything, double check every fact. There is a very short road from hero to zero on social media. Reputation is your most valuable asset – without it you are just one of a thousand. Protect it from those “honest mistakes”, even if your sources are usually right, keep them checked.

3. Be consistent

Just like journalists, you have to create (you have this luxury) a schedule on when your videos, blog posts, tweets and everything else goes live. After that you just have to stick to it. It will both help you to plan your time and your readers – to know when to expect the posts they’re looking forward to.

4. Be worth it

Before publishing anything ask yourself – are you adding any value? If the answer is “no”, delete it and start from scratch. The last thing you want to be is the “noise”. I promise you – there is enough of it on the web. Think about it – do you want to be a blabber or a specialist?

Trust and time is the currency of social media – earn it. And the way to do it is to create compelling content that gives the added value. That’s what people will return for.

5. Look for the next big thing

There always will be things you’re aware of. The topics which you master will be the ones that will make your community to look for your advice, when someone needs one. But remember that while it’s easy to take other opinions to make up your own, there are things which no-one has noticed yet. Be the groundbreaker and explore new territories when looking for subject of the next blog post. Safety is good, but a little daring can go a long way and help you establish as the thought leader within your field of expertise.

What would be your advice? Leave a comment – I would appreciate that.