Editor’s Note: This is the second part of a Community Manager Salaries series. This piece has been co-created by community builders Niki Vecsei and Alexandra Bowen. You can also find the first article in this series, which covers overall salaries, bonuses, and benefits.
In late 2016, we conducted a survey of 116 community managers, and we found fascinating results about community professional pay in North America. However, there was a severe lack of data about community managers in other parts of the world. The community profession is growing in these regions and yet no definitive insight yet exists to benchmark salaries and benefit packages for community managers in Europe.
In our survey, we received responses from just 12 European community professionals. Though this data is not comprehensive or definitive, it does give us important anecdotal benchmarks for those negotiating pay in Europe.
We believe that the information gained from our data points should empower community professionals with the knowledge about what others in their field and general geographic location are making.
Complementing our quantitative data from our survey, we augmented our findings with research found through Glassdoor.com, regional pages of Monster.com, and Xing.de (a Germany-based career site).
This article will focus on job titles, years of experience, salary, benefits and bonuses for community managers in Europe, although most of the data points we received were from the U.K..
Experience and Titles
Across the board, all 116 answers from across the world showed us that the community industry is still relatively young and undefined when it comes to standardization of titles, responsibilities, career path, and years of experience.
Our European sample indicated that titles vary significantly in that region as well. Often, people in community management roles have a “combination” title such as “Community and Content Manager” or “Social Media and Community Manager”, which indicates that their responsibilities are split. Others hold positions that don’t give any reference to the community industry in their title, such as “Social Advisor” or “Communication and Event Manager”.
Through our limited sample set, we also noticed that “Social Media” and “Community Manager” titles are both being used to describe community roles in Europe, pointing to a continued confusion about the difference between the two areas of expertise. The stark outliers were titles such as “Community Manager” and “Head of Community”.
We noticed that senior titles were often held by community professionals who admitted to have only spent a few years (two or three) in community management positions, but have many more years experience overall.
Experience and Income Correlation (U.K.)
The respondents’ data points suggest that five years experience in the industry will take you to the top of the earnings bracket for community managers in the U.K., around £47,750 annually. London, as the capital of the country, outperformed other cities from a financial perspective (albeit the cost of living probably outweighs this income increase).
If you are fairly new to the community industry, it seems entry-level roles earn around the £30,000 mark based on the information found on monster.co.uk and glassdoor.com.
The below table breaks out every single response we received from community professionals in the U.K. (where the Annual Salaries were reported in USD$, we have converted them back to GBP£ for easier interpretation).
Income, Bonuses and Benefits
The earnings declared by community professionals in our data set are much higher than the information we gained from our independent research from glassdoor.com and monster.co.uk.
These job engine and salary prediction tools presented us with a much lower average annual income, around £30,000. We also found that current job openings for community managers in the U.K. varied in industry, but were highly sought after in the gaming industry specifically.
Additional salary research showed that mainland Europe is quite divided in their compensation practices for community professionals. Germany and Spain seem to offer lower incomes, roughly around the €25,000 mark, whereas France and the Netherlands are averaging around €45,000.
We also spotted some trends through our research that suggest that the standalone role of a community manager (not a combination role of social media and community management) is more observable in the western European countries at this time.
In addition, we have narrowed down the prominent industries that are currently hiring for community roles based on our findings from glassdoor.com, local Monster.com sites and Xing.com.
The U.K. was mainly hiring in the gaming industry, Germany in the finance and marketing agency world, while Spain, France and the Netherlands are heavily recruiting in the high tech and telecom sectors.
Comparing data on bonus and benefits, our responses suggest that European employers don’t offer extensive benefit packages as readily as their American counterparts do, where personal retirement and private health care insurance is an integral part of the compensation package. It was, however, more common among respondents in Europe to be offered a subsidized transportation or travel cost reimbursement for everyday commute costs.
Bonuses may be few and far between. The ones we saw through our survey averaged around the €2,000 (£1,500) mark annually.
Your Chance to Make an Impact
To help the Community Manager industry better understand how far we have come in the last few years and where we are all going, please take a few minutes and fill out The Community Roundtable’s annual survey “The State of Community Management 2017” to make your mark in future studies.