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3 Features to Look for in an Online Community App [Research]

Written by Julie Dietz on June 8, 2017 at 8:30 AM

We’ve heard about the importance of mobile for years. Everything needs to look just as good on a smartphone as a laptop, whether you use responsive design or an app. But which is better? An app or responsive design?

Responsive design is essential for any website (don’t buy a website theme or work with an agency that doesn’t support it) but you should also consider that 90 percent of time spent on mobile is spent in apps. So if your association or business wants to make engaging mobile users in your online community a priority, an app is the way to go.

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Topics: Communications, Online Community Software, Member Engagement

Online Community Platform vs AMS Add-On: What Software Does Your Association Need?

Written by Andy Steggles | on June 6, 2017 at 8:30 AM

Online communities are now better known for their ability to improve member engagement, satisfaction, and retention than they were even a few years ago. It makes sense, then, that more and more associations are considering, or expanding, their online community plans.

With this rise in interest comes an increase in online community software options. Companies that previously focused on database work, such as association management software (AMS) providers, now offer community modules as an add-on to their main product.

But are add-on options right for your association? It’s certainly convenient to nestle your community within the AMS you’re already familiar with. But will it achieve the same results as a dedicated community platform?

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Topics: Member Communities, Associations, Online Community Software, Member Engagement

5 Tips for Increasing Donations to Your Nonprofit

Written by Julie Dietz on June 1, 2017 at 8:30 AM

Nonprofits are well-known for their dedication to making a positive impact in their field. The largest and most successful have been around for a long time, like the National Audubon Society, or have a mission and brand that is large and easily recognized, like Ronald McDonald House Charities.

These now-influential nonprofits wouldn’t have made it far without the help of their loyal supporters. Nonprofit supporters are the foundation of change-driven organizations, often contributing volunteer and advocacy hours as well as funding for essential projects.

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Topics: Communications, Engagement, Nonprofits and Charities

How to Leverage Your User Group to Differentiate Your Company in the Sales Process

Written by Julie Dietz on May 30, 2017 at 8:30 AM

Sales are competitive. Even companies with quality products that get great results must fight to win new customers because there are always half a dozen other options that customers are comparing to yours.

Every good sales professional knows that. They know that while potential buyers are talking to your company, they’re also talking to your competitors, weighing cost, functionality, support, and features that will help them achieve their goals.

Your company – and your sales team – need a way to break through the noise.

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Topics: B2B Communities, User Group Communities, Customer Support, Customer Success

Why Everyone Needs to Be a Community Manager

Written by Julie Dietz on May 25, 2017 at 8:30 AM

“You can never go wrong by investing in communities and the human beings within them.” – Pam Moore, CEO and Founder of Marketing Nutz

As an association, you can never go wrong investing in your members, which is part of what makes your private member community so powerful. It’s an exclusive space where  members connect with peers and your organization as well as enjoy the myriad of benefits your association offers.

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Topics: Communications, Online Community Management, Member Engagement

How to Decide Between an Open Source or a Proprietary Community Platform

Written by Liam O'Malley on May 23, 2017 at 8:30 AM

When designing your organization’s website and community, you need to think about what type of platform you want to build it on—in other words, do you want to build it on open source tools, like Wordpress or Joomla, or do you want to go with a proprietary source offered by a software as a service (SaaS) company? 

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Topics: B2B Communities, Associations, Online Community Software

Build a Bridge to Maximize the Community Experience With Social Learning

Written by Richard Finstein on May 18, 2017 at 8:30 AM

If we build it, members will come, right? Organizations and associations dedicate significant resources to their learning strategies and content development in order to attract members and make their membership more valuable. However, while knowledge cuts to the core of what attracts people to these organizations, expectations for participation are often not met. So what is the missing piece for creating a successful learning environment for your members?

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The Great News in the Jive Acquisition

Written by Hunter Montgomery | on May 16, 2017 at 11:34 AM

Last week, Jive announced it was being acquired by Aurea, which would make Jive part of the Aurea customer experience management platform. Whether the deal is good news for Jive and its investors, only time will tell, but it is certainly great news for the social software market, especially for online communities.

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Topics: B2B Communities

How to Recruit and Retain Millennial Employees (Hint: Start by Building Community)

Written by Julie Dietz on May 11, 2017 at 8:30 AM

Some companies naturally attract millennials. They’re the cool ones with foosball tables in their break rooms. But for the rest of the businesses out there, convincing Gen Y that your organization is a great place to work isn’t so easy. If you can’t afford (or don’t want) distracting foosball tables, how do you appeal to young professionals?

The easy answer? Lean on research, including studies and surveys, that flat-out asks millennials what they want.

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Topics: Communications, Millennials, Engagement, Collaboration Tools

6 Key Features of the Best Learning Management Systems

Written by Julie Dietz on May 9, 2017 at 8:30 AM

By 2020, 65% of all jobs in the U.S. will require some type of post-secondary education or training. Unfortunately, colleges and universities aren’t even meeting today’s needs. According to employers, new college graduates don’t have the skills to fill entry-level jobs.

These findings, which indicate a major problem in the education industry, were laid out in a whitepaper from Shelly Alcorn and Elizabeth Weaver Engel. And while the problem for universities is clear, so is the opportunity for associations.

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Topics: Associations, Online Community Software, Member Experience

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