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Are You Spamming Your Customers? (and How to Stop)

Written by Julie Dietz on April 21, 2016 at 8:30 AM | 6 minute read

Spam. Delicious, or just plain weird? While the debate rages on in the culinary category, it never even got started in the marketing world. No one has ever liked marketing spam.

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Topics: Communications, Marketing, Customer Experience, Marketing Automation, Online Community

Writing for the Screen

Written by Josh Bernoff | on April 19, 2016 at 8:30 AM | 3 minute read

You learned to write the wrong way. And now you’re (probably) doing it wrong at work.

I know. I’ve looked at how they teach writing. In high-school, it’s the “five-paragraph theme.” In college, you padded your papers out with verbiage to look impressive. (In one survey of Stanford undergrads, 86 percent admitted they used complicated language in papers just to sound sophisticated.)

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Topics: Communications, Marketing, Online Community

Ideas for Reframing Your Community’s Awesome Content

Written by Lindsay Starke | on April 18, 2016 at 10:00 AM | 4 minute read

Many years ago, when I was underemployed, I’m a little ashamed to admit that I did some writing for content farms. You know the sites I’m talking about: you’re searching Google for information on what to do about that weird rash on your elbow and the first link you click on is a bizarrely useless article stuffed with links. These days, though, you don’t need that kind of factory farmed content--you can get organic, pasture-raised content just like Grandma used to make, directly from your community!

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Topics: Communications, Online Community Management, Marketing, Social Media, Online Community

Nine Tools We Think Community Managers Should Keep in Their Tool Belts

Written by Molly Talbert | on April 13, 2016 at 9:30 AM | 5 minute read

Your life is busy and every moment counts. So it’s hard to find the time to sift through tools and plugins that might help you stay productive and manage your time. What’s the easiest way to track them all down?

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Topics: Online Community Management, Marketing, Online Community

Reduce Customer Support Costs the Community Way

Written by Molly Talbert | on March 22, 2016 at 9:00 AM | 4 minute read

Do you want to make customer support fun for your customers?

And save money for your company?

Communities purpose varies, from growing brand awareness and loyalty to gaining valuable insight into your product. But one area communities are particularly effective in is reducing customer support costs -- Gartner found that communities reduce support costs for companies by 50 percent. And reducing support cost is a top three reason 30 percent of companies start a community, according to the in CMX and Leader Networks Keys to Community Readiness and Growth study.

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Topics: Marketing, Customer Support, Online Community

Six Social Media Trends Expected in 2016

Written by John Foley, Jr. | on March 18, 2016 at 10:00 AM | 3 minute read

Social media continues to evolve, and if you want to leverage social media for your organization, you need to be aware of the current trends for 2016. As social media continues to get an increasing amount of resources and attention, organizations must rise to the challenge of deciding how they can get the best results from social media marketing. 

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Topics: Marketing, Social Media, Email Marketing

Three Reasons Advertising Can Boost Your Community's Revenue (and Success)

Written by Molly Talbert | on March 10, 2016 at 9:30 AM | 4 minute read

More often than not, we’re bombarded with unhelpful, annoying ads. But it doesn’t need to be that way. Sometimes ads are so on-point -- targeted directly at you -- that they’re actually helpful. They’ve finally hit their target audience, which makes everyone happy -- advertisers make money because they sold you a product, and you’ve solved a problem by making a purchase.

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Topics: Online Community Management, Marketing, Online Community

The Mobile Frontier: Create Frictionless Content and Help Members Engage

Written by Andy Steggles | on March 9, 2016 at 10:00 AM | 4 minute read

Engagement -- it’s that golden word everyone talks about and one important sign of a healthy community. Part of creating member engagement -- discussions, content creation, connections -- is removing all the barriers you can. For optimal engagement, it’s important that there’s as little friction as possible, which isn’t as hard as you’d think.

Beyond being a buzzword and a broad concept, engagement does actually affect your community’s bottom line. In our 2015 Community Benchmarking Report we looked at data from 80 organizations with online communities, and compared those overall averages and medians from MGI’s 2015 Membership Marketing Benchmarking Report.

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Topics: Marketing, Customer Experience, Member Experience, Member Engagement, Online Community

Promote Your Community at Events

Written by Calista Rollogas | on February 25, 2016 at 10:00 AM | 4 minute read

You and your team spent a lot of time and energy either creating a new community or revamping your existing community. It’s time for celebration -- and getting people online, engaging. There are many ways to energize a community and bring in some fun, from creating exciting banners to hosting offline events.

Conferences are the perfect time to introduce your members to a new or relaunched community. We compiled a list of some of the most successful, fun and creative ways to get your members engaged with the community before, during and after your annual conference. You don’t get everyone’s rapt attention often, so it’s time to make the most of the opportunity.

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Topics: Online Community Management, Marketing, Online Community

Communities Help the Buyer's Journey

Written by Hunter Montgomery | on February 23, 2016 at 10:00 AM | 5 minute read

A community isn’t just an afterthought for your customers. And it isn’t only valuable once the deal is sealed and you sold them your product or services. Communities can support both you, your team and your customers throughout the buyers journey; every step of the way, from evaluation, decision, retention and, ultimately, creating customer loyalty.

It’s important to think of your customer relationship as starting long before the first contact. Rather than the transaction solidifying a relationship, it’s the relationship that triggers the transaction -- as it did for this man. A relationship with a potential customer begins before you even know them; in a community, they see how you interact with your current customers and how customers interact with each other.

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Topics: Marketing, Customer Communities, Customer Experience, Customer Support, Marketing Automation, Online Community

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