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How to Keep Your Online Community Members Engaged Over the Holidays

Written by Joshua Paul | on December 23, 2011 at 8:30 AM

Keeping Online Community Members EngagedWait! Before you sign off for the holiday break, how are you going to keep your online community thriving during the extended vacation? While most of your customers or members will be planning a lower level of engagement over the next couple weeks, the holidays are also a great time for your target audience to get caught up on content and discussions without the distraction of day-to-day office life.

Here are 5 elements that you can add to your holiday community management plan to keep your online community members engaged while you and your team are away.

Tip #1) Schedule Email Messages

Use the email engine built into your online community software to schedule a couple of email messages calling attention a few relevant articles, files, or discussions that your customers or members can review and comment on from their home computer or mobile device in between spending time with family and friends.

Tip #2) Pre-Write & Schedule Blog Posts

While you are away, set blog posts ahead of time to publish in your online community.

Tip: Since your community members probably aren't in the weeds of their jobs during their vacation, keep the content light (but helpful) or more strategic, rather than posting detailed low-level articles.

Tip #3) Highlight the Best Of

Get your customers' or members' attention with a blog post and email notification highlighting the 3-5 best articles and discussions of the year in your online community.

Tip #4) Create Mini-Tours

Rather than a typical email round-up, target members who have not been engaged in the community for a while and send them a special email that uses links to your community to provide a tour of the most valuable areas and features. Make it easy to get more engaged.

Tip #5) Do Online Community Housekeeping

Let your staff and volunteer leadership how they can do some housekeeping and cleanup over the holidays so they are ready in the new year. This activity might include cleaning up customer advisory group or committee membership rosters, prepping some blogs, sprucing up your online community home page, or get your meetings/events set up for the next year.

At a minimum, use a combination of the ideas above to show your customers or members that the lights are still on over the holidays. Your online community membership will appreciate your level of engagement and you may be surprised at how many people want to stay connected over the break.

Nine low-cost member engagement strategies for associations.

Topics: Online Community Management, Engagement, Online Community

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