Summer is a hectic time for everyone, crammed full of vacations, kids’ summer camps, conferences and work (when you can fit it in). But just because you can’t go on a beach-reading vacation doesn’t mean you should temporarily stop learning. (Remember: you should try to go on some sort of vacation!)
We compiled a list of some of our favorite resources to keep you updated while you bounce around the summer months. No, this isn’t your standard reading list -- in fact, very few of these resources are actually blogs or books. They come in various formats -- including a newsletter, podcast and videos -- so anyone can find something that resonates.
This weekly newsletter (comes out every Friday) is always packed with resources I otherwise wouldn’t have found. Although it’s based out of New York City and focuses on that area, it’s useful no matter where you live. Their theme is customer support, but online communities are a big part of that. They connect the dots between the community world and the greater world in ways I wouldn’t always have thought of. And, at the bottom of each issue, they always have New York City-based community or customer support job listings accompanied by a fun GIF.
Patrick O’Keefe’s weekly podcast covers any and every aspect of community management. Each episode he interviews a new community professional. His guests come from diverse, wide ranging backgrounds in the community world, so each episode has completely different content from the next. He’s covered nitty gritty topics like copyright law or community onboarding, as well as diving into the history of community, more broadly.
There’s no getting around it -- community professionals need to write a lot. From endless emails and posts, to community guidelines and marketing materials, so many of your tasks involve crafting words. Which is hard if you don’t like writing or it doesn’t come naturally to you. Don’t worry -- Josh Bernoff’s blog helps you learn how to cut through jargon, write clearly and get to the point. This is one of our favorite posts -- Josh does a good job of parsing letters executives wrote to their employees and rewriting them with their true meaning distilled from the fluff.
Ever wish there was a community for other community managers? Well, now there is. Check out CommunityManagement.org -- a private online community build just for community managers. Create an account, read the discussions and participate. If you’re looking for more resources or need a second opinion related to your community, this is a great place to go for help.
CMX Hub’s blog is a tried and true resource for anyone interested in online communities. But their YouTube channel is equally valuable, especially if you’ve never been to their conference, CMX Summit (but have always wanted to go!). They record each session at the conference and then upload them to YouTube. They’re usually about one hour in length and give you incredible insight into how other community professionals have built community and overcome obstacles.
Although Twitter itself isn’t inherently a community, it’s chock full of community resources -- if you know where to look. That’s why we created this list of some of our favorite community resources on Twitter. We have a mix of community focused organizations, consultants and community professionals themselves.
If you love community by the numbers, this is the report for you. Every year since 2010 The Community Roundtable has put out their State of Community Management Report, each edition focusing on a different area within the online community world. The 2016 report is based on extensive research from 339 community programs surveyed. If you’re curious about what other communities actually look like, this is the report for you. Dive right into metrics on mobile usage and engagement, vendors, organization size and maturity, just to name a few topics.
What are some of your favorite community resources?