Do you know that person who thrives at being a social media community manager? Maybe they’re the same people who are the life of the party – the purest extroverts who love being the center of attention and can remember names and faces with no problem. The person who can, literally, talk to anyone. Then….there are the rest of us. Being a social media manager can be a lot of fun. There’s a lot of room for creativity, you get to write in a relaxed, fun style and you have your fingers on the pulse of what your brand means to your followers. It can be pretty cool. On the flip side, managing social media can be exhausting and can involve a lot of weird hours and weirder internet trolls. Here’s some tips on managing social media manager burnout:

1. It takes a village.

In a perfect world, social media management doesn’t rest on one person on your team. Maybe there is a lead social media manager, but when it comes to moderating and scheduling content for the page or account, the entire team should be involved. Frequent content brainstorming meetings should take place with key members of the team and multiple members of the team should be admins on all social media accounts. It’s not fair to expect one person to constantly moderate a social media account and the more eyes on an account, the less likely a PR disaster will occur and issues can be brought to management’s attention faster and dealt with quickly.

2. Set Boundaries.

It’s true that the internet and smart phones have turned us into 24/7 social media consumers. This isn’t necessarily a good thing for people in general, but for social media managers, it can be one of the first things that leads to burnout. If your business truly requires monitoring seven days a week, consider creating an “on-call” schedule so the weekend or evening responsibilities are shared. I once started a new job and was instructed by the VP that managing the Facebook page was easy, “On the weekends, all I need you to do is check the page in the morning, the afternoon and before you go to bed.” After a year of that, I resented my job, the Facebook page and that leadership thought this was acceptable. Don’t put your employees in that situation – set clear boundaries on what is expected and remember that very few people will enjoy working 7 days a week long term. If you’re a social media manager currently in this position, don’t be afraid to draw some personal boundaries. It’s a lesson I wish I had learned earlier and been brave enough to do. It’s also okay to state clearly on your Facebook page when you will reply to messages and what your hours are. You can now set up Instant Replies and Outside Business Hours messaging by going to Settings > Messaging. This allows you to set expectations with people who message your page and give them an idea of when they will hear back from you. Here’s some language you might use for a message like this: “Thanks so much for contacting { Your Business }! Our business hours are 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. M – F. We will get back to you soon. If you need immediate assistance call { Phone Number } or visit our website at { URL }.” This language can also be used in your page’s terms and conditions.

3. Trust the Community

One of the most amazing things I’ve witnessed as a community manager is how quickly an engaged community will jump to protect a brand they love. This doesn’t mean a community doesn’t need to be moderated. Even with the most stringent profanity filter turned on, you will have comments that are inappropriate and need to be hidden or the user blocked, but in most cases, with the communities I’ve managed brand ambassadors will step up and shut down negative comments or defend the brand (often they do a better job than you could have done as a spokesmen). Nasty comments and internet trolls can grate on your nerves as a community manager, especially if it’s your first gig. Over time, you’ll develop a thicker skin and recognize that engagement is engagement. If people are reacting to your post, even if their opinion is negative, it helps drive your page engagement. And let’s face it, you’ve done such a good job building your brand on your social channels that those brand ambassadors I mentioned above are going to respond to these comments, thus boosting your engagement even more.

4. Automation is Key

Being organized is key to managing your social media calendar. I’ve seen this done a lot of different ways – everything from using a crazy complex Excel spreadsheet to a tool like BufferApp, Hubspot or Hootsuite. Each tool has it’s pros and cons (another post for another time), but if you don’t want to lose your mind, some type of automation is necessary. Here’s the thing about social media automation – it’s awesome and handy, but rarely can you set it and forget it. Once you’ve scheduled posts, make sure to start each morning refreshing your memory on what you’ve scheduled. Some brands only schedule a few days out, but others schedule weeks at a time. Events and news change a lot in a short amount of time. The last thing you want is for a pre-scheduled post to be seen as insensitive or off-base. Take the time to check the schedule and adjust accordingly. Leave room for candid or timely posts in your schedule. Automation is great because it saves you time, but the beauty of social media is timeliness. Sharing news, reacting to trends and interacting with your community are all things that have to be done in real-time.

5. Remember that it should be FUN (or at lease enjoyable)

Like my dad would say, “It beats digging ditches.” Managing social media is a fun, time-consuming and challenging profession. If you’re not having fun, it’s time to talk to your manager about changes that might help you become reinvigorated about your job. Maybe this means sharing more of the duties with teammates or taking on a new project that has nothing to do with social media. Everyone needs a break now and then – it’s ok to ask for it. Every job is not meant for every person. If you find yourself managing social media and you don’t enjoy it that’s okay. Check it off your list and chock it up to experience. Now go find what you really want to be doing! If you’re overwhelmed with managing social media or your organization doesn’t have a social media manager contact us. We offer a full range of social media packages from coaching to full plans, strategy and management.


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