Order from chaos: How to build your community without havoc!
Community Assemble is a bi-weekly newsletter about creating and growing communities that add value to both customers and brands the right way. We feature tweets, quotes, blogs, and ideas from our experts and various community leaders across the globe.
Communities are now becoming a key asset to every organization.
You may wonder why? Well, simply because they help us connect with each other on a much deeper level, help network with each other, build brand value and drive purpose to the company goals.
The biggest shift we see is the change from individual efforts to group efforts. A shift from “me” to we”. Organisations that prioritise communities are gaining much more than companies that choose not to have one.
As humans, we always tend to feel the need to belong to a group, the validation and approval from a group that allows us to interact, have individuality and let you voice out thoughts, ideas and values comfortably.
As a business when you create such a platform for your users, you end up creating immense profits for your organization by acquiring new customers, retaining old ones and creating brand awareness.
We especially see SaaS companies benefiting most from such expert communities in this race. Having a loyal, engaged community is the best marketing strategy a company can have!
Now that the reasons for building a community are super transparent.
The next question arrives! How can you get started? How do we build a community without all that havoc!
Let’s decode what it takes to build the RIGHT community for your business without any CHAOS!
When we start with the basics, any product for that matter, we lay the foundation by stating the objectives, the goals and the purpose.
We’ll have to keep in mind the objectives from two different ends!
• The objective for building a community from the company’s perspective.
• Purpose or reason for members/users to show up for the community.
Once the objectives are set, our next task becomes super simple!
Who are we targeting? What is our audience going to be like?
1. The WHO has to be as specific as it can get!
We need to make sure that the community will cater to the common needs of the users to create a sense of belonging to all your users, once there is an attachment, you know they’re surely coming back! The math is simple – Give them what they want to hear while keeping your needs in mind (It’s all a game of psychology).
2. You need to choose the right platform!
• A community platform is a piece of software that provides a “base” for your community. Think of it like the staple you need to prepare your dish! The base on which you build the community! It enables your members to interact with one another digitally while you can sit back and analyse the actual metrics of their engagement and tweak it accordingly to keep it in tune with your business goals! In the end, you achieve the EPIC business model that you had always dreamt of for your business.
The process of selecting the platform is simple:
See which platform suits best to your business needs.
Shortlist a few platforms and make sure you choose the best in the lot.
Some of the platforms I have personally loved are Tribe, vanilla forums, Glynk as white labelled platforms and discord for their gamification.
Choose the specific type of platform you need for your business model. Example: will my community focus on the product or the support? Does it need only engagement and interaction? Customer retention or acquisition? Build a creator community? Decide what the essence of your platform should be!
Make a list of the primary features you want for your community, that should give you a clear idea of the kind of platform you need to choose.
3. How do you engage your community?
This 5 step framework becomes the very foundation for building and engaging your community.
4. We need to use the community as leverage to shape the product.
It is very important to be aware and focused on incorporating community into product development.
We need to try establishing the community as the product itself, in fact, use the platform for beta testing to fix any errors before it makes it’s big entry into the market.
5. What is the love that the business model and the platform share together?
Well, there needs to be a lot of love there! The community needs to be aligned with the company’s business model. The “community effects” on a business are immense. The influence of a community s super strong! A strong community has an extraordinary impact on a company’s business model.
‘Almost makes it magical’, as they say.
6. how do we monetise these community efforts for the business?
The financial perspective of the community! thought in the end is the most important aspect of building a community.
The growing financial impact of a community can be linked more specifically to the business model. It’s a perfect love triangle.
Great community – Great business model – Amazing returns on the investment.
The math is simple – the returns are directly proportionate to the growth of the community. The most sophisticated community builders are becoming sophisticated business builders as well.
Building a community takes time, effort and consistency. Having a solid framework while creating one, always helps you create a successful community in the long run.
Snippets of the week:
Community of the week:
On the occasion of Pride month, I would love to celebrate one of my favourite communities! The super cool Grindr community is the world’s largest dating and social networking app for gay, bi, trans, and queer people. The Grindr community is focused on a community that honours the full expression of users’ gender identity.
Happy Pride month to all of our LGBTQ+ followers. Here’s wishing there is much more positivity and progress in the world! Let love, peace and happiness prevail :)
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