Creating and managing an online community is a lot more complex than it sounds. It requires well-thought, scalable planning, and execution to gain visible results.
However, not having a clear vision and a game plan can lead to several challenges and a poor online community building experience. So, what are those challenges and how you can turn them into growth opportunities? Let’s find out!
Turning 4 Common Community Building Challenges Into Growth Opportunities
When you start building an online community, you may come across various challenges. Momentarily, such challenges may seem impossible to conquer. However, challenges are a part of every community developer’s journey. And most of the time, these challenges can be converted into potential growth opportunities, which is the nub of a successful community building experience.
Here’s a quick look at 4 common community building challenges and their solutions –
1. Lack of Clearly Defined Goals
Building a community without clear goals or vision is an issue itself because lack of clarity leads to ambiguous planning and poor execution. If you are not clear why you want to do it, how do you expect to get there? There needs to be a better reason than just ‘generating leads’ or ‘increasing engagement’. Building a community is relatively a longer process and is much about building relationships with your audience. If you don’t have a clear destination and plan to navigate through it, you will possibly lose it mid-way.
Solution: Devise a goal that reflects human emotions and combine it with your business goal. It will enable you to relate to your community members’ expectations and fulfill them efficiently while meeting your company’s needs. Establish the parameters of what the qualitative and quantitative success of your community looks like to you.
2. Little to No Engagement
48.55%[i] of community professionals consider engagement as the main challenge in community building and management. There can be various reasons for this –
- Your content is not compelling enough to encourage your members to engage.
- Members don’t feel the need or motivation to engage.
- New members are still trying to get accustomed to your community.
Solution: You need to get to the root cause to come up with a lasting solution. For instance, if the problem is with content creation then you can start creating interactive content like polls, asking emotive questions, surveys with actionable CTAs, etc. To boost motivation and improve participation, gamify the community and conduct giveaways to reward the members. Similarly, to engage new members, you can curate a detailed guide or a series of emails to get them started. You don’t have to stick to one re-engagement effort. Keep trying new methods to add value to your community and boost engagement.
3. Defining ROI Metrics for the Community
If you are fixated on metrics like ‘increased case deflection’ or ‘lead generation’, you might be calculating ROI inaccurately. It is not straightforward and you need to consider other value creation metrics as well, like the impact of content creation, total customer acquisition, etc.
Solution: You need to align your community goals with your business results. It means you need to know how your community impacts your major business metrics like reduction in customer support spend, customer retention or increase in new customers. Consider using marketing automation tools to properly track your community’s ROI.
4. Rigidity in Moderation
Setting certain content and community guidelines is important to make the community a safe space for its members. However, these guidelines should add value to the community. Many moderators get it wrong. For instance, a community full of sales pitches can be irksome for its members. Likewise, members using other people’s words or images and passing them as their own can be another breach of a community’s code of conduct.
Solution: Appoint a skilled moderator who can gauge what is adding value to the community or what crosses the line and looks promotional. The moderator must formulate flexible guidelines for the community to enable members to contribute towards it and yet keep their content within the acceptance criteria.
It is important to analyze the root cause of challenges. A proactive approach will help you get through those challenges efficiently, enabling a flourishing community. Use these challenges as opportunities to turn your community into something more than just a ‘case deflection’ tool.
Wish to Build a Strong Market Presence With a Stellar Online Community? Talk to Us!
Team Grazitti is adept at building multi-dimensional online communities to drive revenue and elevate business growth. To know more about our CMaaS expertise, drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org, and we’ll take it from there.
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