Anyone building a community envisions a vibrant community that brings new customers.
But organizations make the mistake of waiting for a large number of people to join their community before starting the engagement. This may result in lower engagement levels in your community as the existing members may leave due to delayed engagement efforts.
So, is there a way to spark engagement in a newly-launched community? The answer is- Yes.
Start growing your community at an early stage instead of waiting for thousands of people to join. Let’s take a look at some proven strategies to drive engagement in your newly-built online community.
What is Community Engagement and Why is it Important?
An online community is all about its members and customers. Engagement is not about having thousands of members or increasing page views. It is more about your members’ actions, the benefits they are reaping, and how it is impacting your business. As a community manager, ask these questions to evaluate if your community is fostering quality engagement-
- Do we have repetitive members who return after their first visit?
- Do our members like to participate in the conversations?
- Is the list of active members fluctuating or is it the same 2-3 members who participate in every conversation?
Figure out the level of engagement within your community through these questions. If you have a member base that is actively seeking your content, generating posts, asking questions, and telling other people about your community, then you are moving forward. If it isn’t not happening, then you’ve got to put the effort in.
6 Ways to Hyper-Engage Your Online Community
More than 55%[i] of community professionals quote ‘community engagement’ as their biggest challenge. If you are battling the same struggle, know that you’re not the only one.
Good thing, there are various proven ways to initiate and garner meaningful engagement. Here are the top 6 ways to build hyper-active communities with limited members.
1. Create a Buzz by Running Surveys and Polls
If you are struggling to get your members to participate, run surveys. Start with polls that require minimal input. It will at least get them started and make them provide their perspective. To garner engagement, share results using visuals like infographics. Show them you value their participation by actually implementing their ideas and opinions.
2. Don’t Leave Your Members Wondering What to do Next
Being a community manager is a 24×7 hustle. You need to be available to your members in the community and in private messages as well. Not every member will approach you first regarding their issues. Therefore, you need to proactively monitor your members and their degree of participation.
Since there are only a handful of members, you can reach them out through emails or private messages. Cultivate pride and set the tone of the community by making your members believe that they are part of something bigger.
3. Ensure Safety Through Consistent Community Moderation
As a community manager, you need to actively monitor the communication and make sure that members adhere to the community guidelines. It fosters a safe environment for quality interaction. Don’t hesitate to remove members who repeatedly violate community guidelines. Give your community members a sense of integrity with consistent moderation during the initial interaction phases.
4. Leverage the Power of Social Media
Social media platforms are a great way to spread the word about your new community. Make it easy for your active members to share more about your community on their social media profiles by employing social share buttons. It will work as word-of-mouth marketing. Another way you can try is posting chat threads or ‘hot’ topics of your community on social media channels to invite new members to join your community and participate in the conversation.
5. Allow Your Members to Express Themselves
The most important element is to foster a sense of belongingness. Your members must feel heard and understood in your community. When you start a discussion, allow your members to interact with one another. Let them express their ideas, opinions, and expectations. Fight the urge to jump into the conversation right away by taking the back seat and enabling other members to chime in. You can consider-
- Creating a ‘watercooler’ environment in new communities where members can engage in light-hearted conversations with their peers.
- Asking questions and acknowledging them without being authoritative.
6. Inspire Retention With Exclusivity
One of the best ways to keep your members coming to you is by offering invaluable elements. Go beyond Q&A sessions and offer them an exclusive community that is available to your community members only. For instance, if your clothing brand releases a fashion magazine every month, feature your members’ opinions/ideas/reviews in your magazine.
Capturing members’ interests and keeping them engaged takes work. Incorporate these strategies persistently and the engagement will follow. An interesting and active community is what draws more customers to advocate for your brand. Let’s start building relationships!
Wish to Build a Vibrant Community to Foster Meaningful Engagement? Talk to Us!
Team Grazitti is adept at building efficient online communities that take your business to the next level. To learn more about our CMaaS expertise, drop us a line at [email protected] and we’ll take it from there.
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