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How to Get the Most Out of Your Online Community Metrics

Written by Katie Oakes on April 16, 2015 at 8:30 AM | 4 minute read

Seasoned community managers know that data-driven decision making is essential to growing and managing perpetually active online communities. According to The Community Roundtable's State of Community Management research, "best-in-class online communities are almost twice as likely to be able to measure their value to the organization." 

While there is a lot that goes into managing a thriving online community, the same report notes that online community management teams that can report on their community's value to the company are tracking many more metrics than average online communities.

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Topics: Engagement, Online Community

The Engagement Opportunity for Online Advocacy Communities

Written by Caitlin Struhs | on April 15, 2015 at 9:35 AM | 3 minute read

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Topics: Customer Advocacy, Member Engagement, Associations, Online Community

The Best Mobile Online Community Options: Responsive Web Design vs. Mobile Sites vs. Native Apps

Written by Katie Oakes on April 14, 2015 at 1:40 PM | 8 minute read

With technology, there is a constant evolution of terms, products, and approaches. If you're not fully engrossed in that world, it can be hard to keep up. The meteoric adoption of mobile device to find information, keep in touch, and complete transactions has heads at many companies spinning.

According to data from Cisco, global mobile devices and connections in 2014 grew to 7.4 billion, up from 6.9 billion in 2013. The vast majority of mobile data traffic (97%) originated from smart devices.

The increased use of mobile devices poses both opportunities and challenges for businesses. They want to know if their approach is the right one for their company, customers, and goals. Are they putting their time and money in the right places?

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Topics: Online Community Software, Member Experience, Online Community

Cultivate Volunteer Engagement - The Sky Is the Limit

Written by Lauren Wolfe | on April 13, 2015 at 9:36 AM | 3 minute read

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Topics: Volunteer Management, Associations, Member Engagement, Online Community

When to Open, When to Close: Adding New Communities

Written by Andy Steggles | on April 10, 2015 at 4:21 PM | 3 minute read

Many communities feel the pressure from committees, interest groups and other members to open new communities within their site (example: a Community for teachers has a lot of discussions on curriculum across the state, and members of a committee would like to start a separate community within the site). It's a tall order if those groups aren't prepared to develop a community plan, create seed questions and advocate on its behalf for support and engagement. These frequent requests can wear on community managers, who don't want to give out free tickets to possibly non-active communities.

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Topics: Online Community Management, Engagement, Online Community

How to Establish Key Online Community Metrics Before You Launch

Written by Joshua Paul | on April 9, 2015 at 8:30 AM | 4 minute read

The launch of a private online community is often met with expectations from all sides—organizational leaders, community members, and the community management team. Each has their own definition of a "successful online community."

Your investors, board members, and upper-level management will want to see that your online customer or member community is a worthwhile financial investment. While your community members will want to see that your online community is a meaningful place to spend their time. Lastly, your community management team will want to know where to focus their efforts and whether your current strategy is working.

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Topics: Engagement, Online Community

How to Find Stunning Photos and Images for Your Online Community

Written by Katie Oakes on April 7, 2015 at 8:30 AM | 6 minute read

One of the big answers you need when planning to launch an online community is, 'What kind of content do your users want to consume and how do they want to consume it?'

The how refers to the content mediums that you provide in your online community around given topics. There are several options when it comes to sharing content in private customer or member communities, including videos, blog posts, polls and photos. 

Today, we're going to look how to use photos and other visual media in your online community.

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Topics: Marketing, Online Community

A Millennial Approach to Mentoring

Written by Maddie Grant | on April 6, 2015 at 9:00 AM | 1 minute read

Mentoring has been around since the dawn of time, and it certainly has been a central tenet within associations. Many of us can think of the one or two individuals we met through our professional association who provided important guidance as we navigated the early stages of our careers. Many associations have formal mentoring programs, where younger members are paired with more experienced members in the association in an official mentoring relationship (We're also now pretty familiar with the idea of 'reverse mentoring', where younger volunteers or staff can provide training to older cohorts on technology and social media in particular.)

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Topics: Millennials, Associations, Online Community

Online Community Management: How to Create a Terms of Use for Your Online Community

Written by Katie Bapple | on April 2, 2015 at 8:31 AM | 4 minute read

Where online community moderation guidelines are your community's code of conduct, Terms of Use are its governing bylaws.

Terms of Use describe an online community member's rights and responsibilities regarding the use of your online community. By using the community, they agree to enter a legally binding agreement on all the terms outlined in your Terms of Use.

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Topics: Online Community Management, Online Community

10 Insightful Customer Engagement & Online Community Articles You May Have Missed

Written by Katie Oakes on March 31, 2015 at 2:57 PM | 4 minute read

Often the to-do list at work is amended at a rate faster than we can complete. You do a lot in a day and sometimes is can be hard to stay on top of all of the great insight being published to help you plan, manage, and grow your online customer or member community.

We wanted to make it a little easier on you to stay ahead. We've gathered some of the top advice from the past month for you.

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Topics: Customer Engagement, Online Community

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