6 Tips for Fostering an Online Community – Part 3

Continuing our community-building tips from last week…

#4: Know How to Appreciate
Recognize and thank your community members for participation, brand loyalty, solutions orientation, patronization and for any number of other activities that merit appreciation. Your gratefulness will encourage them to come back and visit your online community more frequently, to encourage their sphere of influence to join and even lend itself to increasing their purchasing behaviors with your business!

A few examples of demonstrating your appreciation:

  • Encourage active and knowledgeable community members to engage with newbies.
  • Reply to questions and inquiries in a timely manner with solid answers.
  • Prizes, giveaways, vouchers, coupons and more are always a good way to reward and recognize your customers.
  • Ask for their opinion and feedback! People love to contribute.
  • Most importantly, say ‘thank you!’

#5: Set Goals for Your Community Building

Goal setting for your community building efforts assists in not only guiding the efforts, but also providing measurable results as well. Online communities can provide rich and effective environments for achieving the following:

  • Testing new ideas and products
  • Gathering feedback on current products and services
  • Building engagement on your website
  • Enhancing customer service/support
  • Educating current and prospective customers
  • Narrowing a sales funnel

These are few examples of types of goals that can be accomplished with a robust online community. Additionally, identifying your desired achievements for your online community will foster the ability to create a community management strategy in which you can measure effectiveness and success.

What’s the moral of this community-building tale? Building community around your business online supports the community building you’re doing offline. More and more consumers are beginning their purchasing decisions with online research. Don’t miss this opportunity for your customers to speak for your brand!

An online community of brand-loyal, well-appreciated and encouraged members and customers speaks volumes for the relevancy and credibility of your business.

If after you have read this, you still have questions about online community-building, please feel free to contact us for more information.