Self-Care for Community Professionals

Sherrie RohdeThere are people who believe that, in order to be a community professional, you must always be connected. Because the internet is always on, so must we be. But if you follow that belief to its logical conclusion, it ends in burnout.

We have to take care of ourselves. That’s a big topic on this episode, with guest Sherrie Rohde, who is the community manager for Magento and co-producer of #CMGRHangout. Plus:

  • Why community management isn’t for “rock stars”
  • The volunteer to community manager career path
  • Why good support forums need members who aren’t experts

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Learning from Theme Park Design

Scott MooreIt’s a new year and, as such, there is no shortage of people making predictions about the future of our industry. Don’t forget: the future isn’t what we predict – it’s what we (you!) do.

Scott Moore is my guest this week. He’s been working in community for more than 20 years, having spent time at Fujitsu, the Charles and Helen Schwab Foundation and We talked about how you can build empathy in your online community, plus:

  • What the early community management conferences were like
  • How you can encourage members who get off to a bad start in your community
  • What community professionals can learn from theme park design

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All the News That’s Fit to Print

Bassey EtimWhile some news organizations have run away from online comments, The New York Times has shined by embracing them and holding commenters to a level of quality that reflects their editorial work.

Bassey Etim is at the center of these efforts. He leads the 14-person Community desk, which focuses on comment moderation, while also helping the Times to unearth and maximize the value of their reader community – and the value they provide to readers.

We talked about how comments have improved the journalism at the Times, plus:

  • How Bassey hopes to build a celebrity class of commenters
  • The ROI of comments for news organizations
  • Why he’s excited for the Times to build community one-on-one with readers

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You Don’t Just Go Global

Rebecca NewtonCommunity management is not new. I know of several professionals who have been in this space for 20 years or more – including today’s guest, Rebecca Newton.

Rebecca has been responsible for community, moderation and safety at some of the largest kid-friendly online communities in the world. At AOL, she managed a volunteer program that numbered 16,000. At Sulake, Rebecca helped expand Habbo into 24 countries. At Mind Candy, she led a community of more than 100 million Moshi Monsters fans.

We talked about her experiences scaling moderation systems and navigating the legal hurdles tied to expanding globally, plus:

  • How the e-mint listserv started
  • The filtering vendors that Rebecca relies on to keep communities safe
  • What brought about the end of the AOL Community Leader program

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The Holy Grail of Community Management

Sarah HawkLaunching a podcast is a lot of fun! I’ve really enjoyed hearing from people who discovered the show following last week’s first episode.

This week, I talk with my friend Sarah Hawk, who I’ve known for many years, even before she joined the community industry and became a respected member of it. She is now the head of community at FeverBee and manages community efforts for UXMastery.

Sarah focuses on building addictive communities through smart software, UX and persuasive design. We touched on those topics, plus:

  • The experience you gain as a volunteer moderator
  • The difference between agency and brand-side community roles
  • What Sarah feels is the holy grail of community management

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When Marketing Automation Becomes a Community Problem

Bill JohnstonThis is the first episode of Community Signal, a new podcast for online community professionals, and I couldn’t be more excited. Not only to launch the show, which has been in the works for months, but to have such a wonderful first guest!

I’m joined by Structure3C’s Bill Johnston, one of my favorite thinkers in the community space. I couldn’t think of a more fitting person to help me kick off the show. He shared a fascinating story about what happened when marketing automation at Autodesk fell in his lap. Plus:

  • How Bill developed the community and social listening and response program at Autodesk
  • Why communities need to partner with networks
  • The community industry’s fractured leadership

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