It occurs to me every now and then that I have terrible timing for some things in life, mostly because patience is not one of my strong points. Career-wise, it’s been occurring to me a lot this past year, as I’ve watched the association community management space blossom….about three years after I left it. Last week when I attended the Higher Logic Super Forum, while it was great to see so much enthusiasm about and focus on community management, it made me a little wistful that it couldn’t have been like that a few years back when I feel like I basically spent my life fighting the good fight about the importance of community management in the association space and lamenting the lack of community managers even as more and more associations launched private communities. Which led to being challenged about whether having a dedicated community manager is necessary to the success of an association’s online community.
Anyway, the bottom line is that I spent a lot of time over a lot of years writing about association community management, and it occurred to me last week–maybe now would be a good time to re-surface some of that old content since the time may have finally come for association community management. Because Squarespace’s archive and tagging functionality is so crap (that’s why I switched to WordPress), simply pulling together a feed of those posts isn’t working, so I’ve combed the archives and pulled these together in hopes that they might be of use to someone struggling to get internal buy-in for community management or just feeling the pressure of being a lone wolf in their organization:
- Why Community Manager Should be Your Association’s Next Hire
- Associations With Engaged Communities Have Higher Retention Rates
- Why Online Community is About More Than Community for Associations
- My 3 CMAD Wishes
- 2013 State of Community Management Report Stresses Importance of Community Managers (this one needs to be updated with data from the 2015 report)
- 31% of Associations Have Online Communities. Where are the Association Community Managers?
- What Associations Can Learn from Reddit’s Volunteer Moderator Revolt
- How to Showcase Online Community Wins for Membership Marketing
- Associations: Launching a Community? Who’s Managing it?
- Why I Quit Community Management
While there is a ton of content out there about community management, a lot of it (most of it) is geared towards managing community for brands or start-ups, not so much the unique challenges of managing community at a membership-based association or professional society. Tactics like “Piss People Off” might work for startups or brands, I’m pretty sure that if you want to keep your job in the association world, pissing off dues-paying members is something you probably want to stay clear of. #justsayin
So I know there are passionate association community managers out there, hopefully blogging. Who are you? Please post a link to your blog so I and others interested in association community management can follow.