Who really are Social Media Evangelists?


[Updated: April 2014] Made few corrections and changes.

Most social media agency personnel use ‘Social Media Evangelist’ as a designation; however not many know the meaning of the same. I remember tweeting one of my followers whose Bio said that he is an evangelist, “What is the meaning of social media evangelist and what its job is?” He gave a revert that sounded funny.

I remember a Christian friend of mine using the word evangelist in some of his conversations in church. I called him up and asked the meaning of the same. According to him, evangelist is a person who spreads good news or who preaches gospel. The job of evangelists is to spread information about a cause and keep people aware and informed to working towards it.


If we go with the definitions, evangelism can be all word-of-mouth. It can be argued that one has to practice to be able to speak about anything with authority. But one can also dabble, understand the benefits and spread the word.

Later I tried to connect ‘Social Media’ and ‘Evangelist’. If one is passionate about social media and is helping others learn about it, He / She may be termed as Social Media Evangelist. One may not tweet 1000x a day or form communities to spread the word but may help organizations to assist/consult and share the good learning. This is true for any domain; be it Education evangelist, technology evangelist or any other field.

Community manager v/s Social media evangelists

Community manager is a debatable term; some refer to it as Community facilitator. Community Manager’s job is to light a bon fire (a social object) and engage people who sit around it (fans / members) to create value out of the get-together. Engaging people is a process of facilitation!

A Social Media Evangelist is one who preaches the importance of lightening a bon fire.

In other words, Social media evangelists are those who understand the way of working of social media and preach the same to those who want to learn/implement. However, if you find someone engaging you on a topic of saving Tigers on Social Media may not be called as social media evangelist – but may be called as a community manager/ facilitator.

One of the reasons I wrote this posts was because I found that many people call themselves Social Media Evangelists, but they actually are community facilitators!

  1. Olive says

    Pretty well written bro, Short & simple while I was reading this my noodles got cooked.

  2. Pooja Patil says

    clear and concise ! thanks for the info :)


    I am a lay man in terms of defining a social media evangelist. anyone who engages in social media of any form and who is able to evangelist or make others use the same, he/she is an evangelist…. correct me if I am wrong. I am also confused about subject matter expertise and this one…

  4. rabi gupta says

    Hi Satyam,

    You are right in differentiating “Social media evangelists” from “Community facilitators”. Here are my two cents-
    1. No one is an evangelist (be it social or otherwise) unless s/he has the qualities of a Maven. The book “The Tipping Point” describes Maven as [“information specialists”, or “people we rely upon to connect us with new information”]. Even if one is having 1000 odd followers on twitter s/he can’t be called as an SM evangelist unless s/he has the capability to influence others by their tweets.
    2. Now to understand community management, social media has 3 major parts- Content, Marketing and Creatives. A social media evangelist should have the quality of at least first two (marketing and content) without investing any additional sum of money. If not then either he’s a marketer, a content writer or a designer/developer!

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