Why taking time to engage your community will pay off

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Owner of this photo is Flickr user Dave Fayram. Original location of the image: https://www.flickr.com/photos/davefayram/4387807857
Image copyright Flickr user Dave Fayram (https://www.flickr.com/photos/davefayram)

If you’re lucky/ interesting/ popular enough to have a community, you must already know that it needs to be permanently fed. There are 3 golden steps that apply to every community management: BUILD IT – KEEP IT – GROW IT. And skipping any step of this equation won’t get your community further from the shore, so don’t set your sails just yet, your journey needs a to do list 🙂

Investing in your community will get you through all these stages head up. But what does investing mean? Is this about money? Yes, it can be. But it’s mostly about being present.

With every contribution you generate a circulatory system whose role is to pump engagement up among the members of your community. And we believe that being in permanent contact with them is the right way to do it.

Of course you can’t stay in personal touch with each one of them, especially when your community is formed by dozens of people. So choosing a software solution to do it for you is the perfect tool – adapt to Enterprise 2.0. There are pretty awesome products in this area nowadays, from Enterprise social networks to Enterprise Q&A.

Its primary role is to bring up the benefits that your community has the true potential to offer. All these benefits are already there: you don’t create it, you just offer the right setting for it to emerge.

Let’s say we got your attention and you’re interested in a solution that will improve and maintain the body of your community. What would you first go for? What are the features according to which you’d choose it? We come with our own tip: go for the one that feels alive! No, no need to bring your pulse meter to this meeting. By alive I mean autonomous. Self-built, self-updated, self-upgraded. And this happens when you allow precisely the members of your community to aggregate it. People can easier relate to content they helped mature and it defines the first quality of being the member of a community: participating.

Also, aiming to offer a solution that works as a tool for your community to engage says a lot about your approach. It shows long-term commitment and that’s a necessary principle if you want to be a successful community manager.

Don’t forget that the members of your community are your main marketing tools. They are both connecters and openers. If the dynamic of your actions challenge them in the proper way, you’ll help them engage in no time. And when you’ll overhear by word of mouth or in the market that they speak proudly about their community online and in person, you’ll know you’re doing the right job. If they will feel concerned when something’s not going right within the community and they’ll start having initiatives about finding solutions you’ll have the complete amount of benefits. That’s your ROI right there.

All these will reflect in the share of voice within social networks and newsletter conversion rates. And by the original content that your own community helps create, you’ll get closer to that trademark we all long for in this sea full of lucky/ interesting/ popular communities.


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