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Pitching Your Association's Online Community Strategy: How to Overcome Common Objections

Written by Christina Green | on January 14, 2016 at 8:30 AM | 4 minute read

Whenever you are trying to do something innovative, you can rest assured there will always be haters. Most of them have the right intentions but many raise objections simply because what you are suggesting takes them out of their comfort zones and if it fails they don't want tied to a sunken ship. Think, Zune circa 2006 (you can go ahead and look that up on your iPod touch).

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Topics: Online Community Management, Associations, Online Community

Moderation 101: 6 Tips to Help You Toe the Community Line

Written by Molly Talbert | on January 14, 2016 at 8:30 AM | 5 minute read

 

Don’t underestimate good moderation -- it’s a skill that takes practice. And if you want strong engagement and robust discussion on your community, it’s an ability your community manager must have, especially at the beginning.

A large part of becoming a good moderator is knowing how to strike the balance between controlling conversations to maintain order, contributing to make sure conversations don't die, and giving members or customers free reign to express themselves. You don't want mayhem, yet you don't want to dampen discussions before they even get going.

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Topics: Online Community Management, Engagement, Online Community

How to Get Customers Hooked on Engaging in Your Online Community

Written by Nick Davis on January 13, 2016 at 8:30 AM | 4 minute read

If you have managed an online community at some point in your career, you know that the 'member to engaged member' ratio is a pretty widely adopted metric throughout the online community space. You also probably know that that metric leaves a lot to be desired.

In case you're not familiar, the numbers break down like so:

  • 1% of visitors to your community register to join
  • 15% of those who register actually participate
  • 20% of those who participate will continue to be active in 6 months
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Topics: Customer Engagement, Online Community

Changing Behavior and Creating Value

Written by Molly Talbert | on January 13, 2016 at 8:30 AM | 5 minute read

What makes a community valuable? There are a lot of combined factors that create value, but a big one is member behavior -- how do people act when they’re in your community? Member interaction can tip the scales of your community in either direction, towards success or catastrophe. If people engage and ask the group questions, the community feels much different than it would if people only checked in occasionally and emailed members privately.

What if your members aren’t doing what you want? Good news is, if your community isn’t very engaged or doesn’t feel sustainable, you can mold member behavior to create the environment you want.

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Topics: Online Community Management, Engagement, Member Experience, Online Community

Your Community Platform Checklist

Written by Hunter Montgomery | on January 12, 2016 at 3:30 PM | 4 minute read

Forrester predicted branded communities were going to be “the next big thing” in 2015. And they were.

This growing interest in communities is centered around organizations’ need to facilitate collaboration and accelerate organic engagement with their constituents. At some point, your social media channels are simply not enough.

Another recent Forrester survey found U.S. "online adults" who want to stay in touch with organizations are almost three times as likely to visit a website as to engage on Facebook. The opportunity to collaborate and ask questions beyond social channels is becoming commonplace and expected. But who provides the best collaborative option? Some vendors in the market have started offering “community add-ons” – modules developed to supplement the company’s core offering (e.g. an AMS/CRM, marketing automation software, a CMS or other systems).

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Topics: Community Platforms & Updates, Online Community Software, Online Community

The Key to Engagement -- Empower

Written by Molly Talbert | on January 11, 2016 at 8:30 AM | 4 minute read

What’s the key to engagement? Empowered members.

Customers and members often go to communities for information -- that’s great, and you want your community to be chock-full of awesome, valuable information. But that shouldn’t be the only end goal. You don’t want people to log in only when they have the occasional question. You want community to be part of their routine, with regular check-ins and contributions.

So, how do you get people coming back often? How do you help members and customers find value in your community?

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Topics: Online Community Management, Engagement, Marketing Automation, Online Community

Community Dream to Reality: Top Five Ways to Prove Value to Executives

Written by Caitlin Struhs | on January 7, 2016 at 9:30 AM | 3 minute read


If you want to live the community dream, you’re going to need executives on your side. Did you know two thirds of organizations with highly involved executives are seeing their communities influence 16% or more of their organizations’ total revenue? (Demand Metric study, 2014) This effective involvement is possible with the right balance of meaningful impact and innovation using smart risk mitigation and ROI.

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Topics: Online Community Management, Marketing, Online Community

How to Measure the Effectiveness of Your Association's Member Engagement Tactics

Written by Christina Green | on January 7, 2016 at 8:30 AM | 4 minute read

It's that time of year when people think about personal and professional resolutions. Often the personal resolutions involve adopting a healthier lifestyle. If you have ever sworn you're giving up something that is detrimental to your health, like losing weight, exercising more, or any similar healthy-living promise, you most likely gave yourself some rules to live by.

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Topics: Associations, Member Engagement, Marketing Automation, Online Community

Why More Companies Are Building Communities

Written by Nick Davis on January 6, 2016 at 8:30 AM | 2 minute read

Why are so many companies building online communities?

I'm sure that I'm not the only one who is filled with that sense of dread when approaching a car lot. I know that the minute I step out of my car I'll be swarmed with sales people desperate to meet their monthly sales quota. Nobody likes a hard sell, and that's why companies are increasingly building online communities to keep current and prospective customers informed and engaged.

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Topics: Customer Communities, Online Community

2015 Favorite Community Reads

Written by Molly Talbert | on January 6, 2016 at 8:30 AM | 4 minute read

In many ways, 2015 was the year of the private online community. All types of organizations caught on to the virtual community shift -- small and large, nonprofit and commercial. And if they haven’t yet, they’re beginning to realize they should, since communities are here to stay.

Not only does community increase member retention and growth, but it helps with content creation and humanizes your organization.

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Topics: Online Community Management, Online Community

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