My love affair with community management began when I worked for an indie gaming studio. The studio had since closed and the games are no more, but the community remains and so does the community manager....
This is my first post here so it is an introduction. It is also my view of community management and how I apply it to anything and everything, not just games.
I worked for a really cool Indie studio that developed social games. We had 2 games on Facebook (really good ones too!!) and for me, it was the best job ever. I honestly could not believe how lucky I was to land this job because it incorporated everything I loved and everything I was good at: Writing content, creating worlds (I wrote the in-game content too), marketing, social media and.... playing games! I mean really.... I got paid to play!
During that time, I helped form and maintain strong communities of players for both games. The most important thing I learned about myself as a community manager, was that I am a natural networker and that I have a gift in the sense that I can read people's mood even when they post it on Facebook. I can connect with the players and live the game through their eyes. This is what made me a true community manager and this is what allowed me to create content that matters for them.
When the studio closed I had to make a choice. Did I want to look for another job in social media management? Or did I want to do something else? One important thing to note is that I am based in Israel. Community Management here is...well.... not very popular, to say the least. Most people around me fail to understand the value of true community management and how it differs from "just social media management" or "just copywriting" or "just running ad campaigns" etc. Also most of the gaming companies (and there are quite a few) are located in the center of the country, whereas I live in the north. I can and I did work from home without any problem, but most employers here fail to see the benefit of having an employee who isn't tired from a long commute, who isn't in a hurry to get to the train and who can work outside office hours (when the community is up and active but the other staff members are already fast asleep).
I thoguht of giving up community management altogether but I felt it would just be wrong. This is who I am, I am a community manager. This is what I do. In my life and in my work. So I went free lance and I set my goal: to educate companies, brands, startups and other businesses about Community Management and to make it a standard for everyone and everywhere. So far... it's been going pretty well. But I have to admit I miss the gaming world! I work so hard that I have no time to play (my latest addiction is Path of Exile) and I wish I could work for and with another community in gaming.