Tl;dr version: The addition of a Community Manager will allow your Social Media Manager to work smart, not hard. Broad strategic thinking is strangled by the day-to-day tactical work involved in community management.
In my role as Social Media Strategy Consultant, I keep finding that Social Media Managers are being tasked with too much. They’re tasked with everything from developing an editorial calendar, building relationships with partners, to the tactical day (& night) work of producing content, publishing it on many channels, and supporting it with advertising.
Social Media Managers in this position are often overwhelmed and ineffective. It’s more than a sustainability issue. Yes, this person is probably overworked, but what’s really happening is they’re too deeply entrenched in the day-to-day needs of an online community (often in the hundreds of thousands) and it clouds the ability to think strategically.
For example: Let’s say you are trying to improve your Event Marketing strategy. You want to attract your target market five cities nationwide with lifestyle events. You wouldn’t ask the person on the ground running a local event, checking-in names to the door to do this work. Their strategic thinking will most likely only reflect the community within their immediate surroundings. You would instead lean on someone with a broader sphere of thinking.
There are a few caveats… First: you obviously need the budget for both a Social Manager and a Community Manager. There are many freelance Community Managers that could make this easier. Second: make sure your Social Media Manager appreciates the added role of management and planning required to set up a Community Manager up for success.
Then, as your Social Media Manager is freed from the tactical work, be prepared to support them as they grow and evolve their strategic thinking.