While community management is a relatively new phenomenon compared with traditional areas of management such as human resources, the concept has come of age since it came into effect at the advent of online communication. Community management sufficed in the early days of online communication when people relied on chartrooms and forums for communication. With the rise in social business, the role of the community manager has become has become necessary as businesses evolve so as to meet the needs and expectations of the social customer. Community leaders in different organizations perform diverse roles. While their roles may be characterized by diversity, most of their tasks revolve around community advocacy, evangelization of the company’s brand, development as well as actual communication and editorial planning, and acting as the liaison between decision makers in the internal environment and the external players who include the community.
The community manager should be placed as an interface between the customers and the decision makers within the company. The actual location on the organization chart should be connected to editorial, product and business development and product/service marketing. The community manager helps the internal decision makers to moderate their decisions with the information gathered from customers. The community manager also helps the internal structures of the company to improve on customer service since the information gathered from customers enables the manager to make an evaluation of the company’s position with regard to offering customer service. The community manager assists in collaboration and engagement in the improvement of the brand image. On the other side, the interface of the community manager assists the external community in outreach and dissemination of appropriate information that helps enhance the reputation and brand image. This means that effective playing of the roles of a community manager enhance communication between the internal and external environment.