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Member Communities Posts

How to Create Engaging Online Discussions: 7 Tips for Community Managers

Written by Simona Ciampi on May 31, 2018 at 8:29 AM | 5 minute read

Often, and especially early on in the life of an online community, the community manager is the one who has to start discussions. If you’re a community manager, I’m sure you know from experience that creating an engaging discussion is not easy. For example, asking someone what they think about an article and just putting the link out there is not typically enough.

There are a few handy techniques you can use when creating a conversation to facilitate more interaction.

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

Is Your Organization Risking Members' Privacy by Connecting on Facebook?

Written by Sara Maloney on April 12, 2018 at 8:30 AM | 3 minute read

HL Blog-public-social-media-can-pose-privacy-risks

They say to "never build on rented land," but is that always true? And, if this is the case, why do we continue to put our personal and business' intellectual property on public platforms owned by third parties?

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Topics: Social Media, Member Communities, Online Community Software, Collaboration Tools, Marketing Automation, Online Community

How To Start a Micro-Advocacy Program in Your Association

Written by Molly Talbert | on August 8, 2017 at 8:30 AM | 4 minute read

What happens when you combine a passionate segment of your membership with opportunities to make a difference beyond the walls of your association? An advocacy program.

With an advocacy program, your organization can offer added-value for your members while simultaneously positively impacting issues and constituencies important to your industry and members. By giving members an advocacy outlet, you can expand your reach while creating stronger bonds with your current members.

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Topics: Member Communities, Associations, Online Community

How to Find Your Best Content Topics (Without Paying for Market Research)

Written by Julie Dietz on July 27, 2017 at 8:30 AM | 4 minute read

How is your association keeping its offers relevant to members and preparing for the future?

According to a recent study by Leader Networks, most associations – 83 percent – are aligning their products and services to market needs so they meet members’ expectations and stay relevant. That’s a smart goal, but it requires a deep understanding of members and prospects.

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Topics: Member Communities, Associations, Member Experience, Online Community

How to Create a Great Mentoring Program in Your Online Community

Written by Julie Dietz on July 18, 2017 at 8:30 AM | 5 minute read

Mentors are a vital part of any industry. Through mentoring, employees get the chance to learn vital skills and increase competency in ways that boost morale and job satisfaction – something that’s improving with technology.

Online mentoring programs have taken the traditional brick-and-mortal experience to a new level, providing anytime, anywhere access to expertise, insights, and perspective that enhance job performance and outcomes. Associations, which are widely-recognized experts in their industries, are stepping up to offer such programs. Many times, mentoring programs even evolve into a key member benefit for professional associations.

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Topics: Millennials, Member Communities, Associations, Online Community

How Switching to a Private Online Community Helped the Association of Professional Dog Trainers (APDT) Double Community Engagement

Written by Molly Talbert | on June 13, 2017 at 10:35 AM | 3 minute read

 

The Association of Professional Dog Trainers (APDT) once served its members with a Yahoo Group, but only a few hundred members signed up to participate on the platform. Something wasn’t right. APDT needed to find a way to broaden their reach, connecting more members to each other and to the organization.

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

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 | 4 minute read

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, Online Community

5 Reasons You Need to Integrate Your Online Community and CRM Today

Written by Julie Dietz on April 11, 2017 at 8:30 AM | 5 minute read

My favorite childhood game was Telephone. My friends and I would sit in a circle for hours passing messages around by whispering in one another’s ears. Hearing how the original messages changed to something nearly unrecognizable at the end always made me laugh.

Telephone isn’t just an entertaining childhood pastime. It also teaches a valuable lesson: indirect communication is rarely accurate. You lose essential meaning when there isn’t a one-on-one connection. It’s a problem that happens not only with people, but with software systems as well.

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Topics: Customer Communities, Member Communities, Online Community Software, Online Community

How to Build the Business Case for Your Association’s Online Community Strategy

Written by Andy Steggles | on February 14, 2017 at 8:30 AM | 7 minute read

You’ve spent countless hours interviewing members and pouring over data. You’ve researched techniques, combed the internet for tools, and finally come up with a solution.

The best way for your association to provide long-term value to members is with an online community.

It’s perfect. You can increase non-dues revenue with an online store, deliver benefits with user-generated content, and engage members with discussion forums and blog posts.

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Topics: Marketing, Member Communities, Associations, Online Community

5 Rookie Mistakes Associations Make with Online Communities

Written by Julie Dietz on August 31, 2016 at 8:30 AM | 6 minute read

Last month, I got a Facebook friend request from my father. I was surprised, but not because there are posts on my Facebook that my father shouldn't see (there aren't). I was surprised because my father is a 60-something retiree and he's getting into social networks, which are really just online communities. He loves them, and he's already used them to reconnect with numerous colleagues, friends, and organizations that he belongs to.

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Topics: Online Community Management, Member Communities, Online Community

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