How to increase activity in a fledging community

(Nick Lawson) #1

Hi guys

New to this community, but was looking for some advice about a new community project i’m working on. Hoping you guys can help.

It’s only been live about 3 weeks and is still in beta with around 350-400 members. It’s gone okay so far with maybe around 5-10 posts per day. However a lot of the noise is coming from me at the moment to try and make it a vibrant and interesting place to be, and i’m not sure how sustainable this is.

Therefore my goal right now is getting more people to post on topics and start their own topics. I feel like that this is the key to having a healthy vibrant community (as opposed to member numbers), so i’ve been looking for a few ways to do this, other than me just posting topics and waiting for replies. I’d love to hear from people who have got through this barrier to what i would call a self sustaining community (ie doesn’t need constant noise from the CM to still be a lively place).

A few things i’ve thought about:

Do i just need to post more content? I post about one new topic per day and post on all existing topics where appropriate.

Do i need to diversify content? Majority of topics right now are “can someone help me with x”. Maybe we need content such as “I read to this article (linked) on x - what do you guys think?”

Do i just need to grow member numbers? Am i expecting too much from a community of 350?

Apologies for the horribly long first message, and thanks in advance.

(Sarah Hawk) #2

Hey Nick,
Great to hear from you.

New communities are a tricky beast – the key here is patience. I’ve been in your position and while things feel super slow, that’s normal. It’s a long game.

From what you describe, nothing sounds particularly worrisome. 5-10 posts per day in a community that is only 3 weeks old (and in beta) is pretty much what I’d expect (obviously all communities are different).

The key for you right now is your core founding member group. If you nurture a really tight group of people that you have a good relationship with, you can lean on them to model the behaviour that you want others to follow. Get them to start discussions and welcome new members.

That is as much as I’d personally post in your situation.

That depends on the type of community. Can you tell us a bit about it?

That is part of it, but not the solution. Get your founding members acting as a healthy mini-community and then work on growth.

This article might be of use:

(Sarah Hawk) #3

Hey @nick_lawson – you’re another month in now. How are things progressing?
What’s the current biggest challenge?