New members to your Community

(Nick Emmett) #1

How do you guys deal with onboarding new members?
Do you send welcome emails? A welcome pack? Do you have a welcome post? An introduce yourself post? Do you do nothing but wait and hope for the best? I’ve just been writing a blog post which has made me think of what I do. A lot of our members are signing up because they want/need access to our Support area to log a case, or to access our training catalogue: I want to make sure that they know of everything that’s available in there and encourage them to use the other areas and even engage with people in the Forums :wink:

My process is essentially this, over the course of the first week:

  • Welcome email: I send welcome emails out every Monday at the minute to the people that joined the previous week. I’m think of changing this and trialling it on a daily basis.
  • Follow: The day after (so generally a Tuesday) I Follow all new members. This gives me the ability to make sure that they’re not getting lost in the ether if they do post. Sometimes people make their first post to nobody and don’t realise so I want to be able to see those occasions and guide them in to the groups etc. It also sends a notification to their inbox :smile:
  • Welcome post: I post every Friday with 2 things - a topic for everyone to discuss, usually loosely based around the last week and the one coming up, along with @mentioning all the new members and encouraging them to introduce themselves and others to say hi.

It’s definitely helping to pull people in, and people are definitely encouraged to post or at least Comment/Like, although they’re not posting in droves yet!

Getting there.

(Richard Millington) #2

Hawk and I have just been revamping this too. Once we finish the tweaks to the site we’ll do a much better job on this.

Essentially our goal is to prompt people to sign up and participate as quickly as possible. This is a little more complicated because we have a paid option, but this is what we’re looking at right now:

  1. Member visits (referral/search/promotion somewhere)
  2. Member either clicks ‘join’ or is prompted to join after 3 clicks to the site
  3. Member completes his/her details and is taken to a page to select membership level.
  4. Member joins and is either taken to the page they wanted to visit (if prompt) or the site
  5. Member receives a confirmation e-mail asking them to participate in a topical discussion (what are you working on) AND is added to our mailchimp autoresponder list.
  6. Member also gets a notification from @HAWK which reaffirms the e-mail and solicits that first contribution.
  7. The autoresponder will send out information about feverbee/experts.
    8 ) Personal welcome from @HAWK with a quick question.

The goal is to get the newcomer to take the action that’s best for them and the community - chiefly, get them to share what they’re doing right now?

(Sarah Hawk) #3

My brief here is to make our on-boarding process world class. On my quest, I found this brilliant article.

(Nick Emmett) #4

I think that’s the key thing @richard_millington , getting people to take action, but one that’s going to give them the most value there and then. As I mention some of our members are just looking for the support area, some are looking for Training. Others want to engage and ask a question. They get all the info and the links to do all of this in our initial email. My plan is to add a call to action in there to encourage people to post on a topical discussion.

That’s a great link @HAWK, thanks for sharing.

(Richard Millington) #5

The only thing I can consider adding here is a way of segmenting them by
what earlier by identifying where they came from.

Not seen many sites do that well. Are you tracking click throughs of links
in the email? And opens?

(Jessica Malnik) #6

Two of the biggest pitfalls with onboarding new members I’ve seen are:

Too much automation. It’s only a welcome email or maybe a full autoresponder series with no personal touches.

Or, the worst of the two. There’s no clear calls-to-action for what you want a new member to do.

Before you start crafting any emails (personal or automated), outline what you want members to do. Ideally from easiest, lowest commitment (things like set up their profile, “like a comment,” etc) to the items with the highest commitment value. If you want a really, really great resource that explains this far better than I could, read up on the commitment curve. (Huge hat tip to Justin Isaf for introducing me to this concept.)

As for an example, I think @andrewyouderian and Laura do an awesome job with onboarding with the EcommerceFuel community. Super personalized and tailored to each new member.

P.S. I tried to tag Justin in this comment. Only to discover he isn’t in here. :frowning: Please work your community magic and change this @richard_millington and @HAWK. :smile:

(Sarah Hawk) #7

[quote=“jessicamalnik, post:6, topic:858”]
P.S. I tried to tag Justin in this comment. Only to discover he isn’t in here. Please work your community magic and change this @richard_millington and @HAWK.
[/quote] There is supposed to be a feature to invite people by email to a topic for just such an occasion as this, but it’s not working properly. If I can’t get that sorted by Monday I’ll do it the old fashioned way.

(Richard Millington) #8

The big challenge here is in optimising your time. Where can you pinpoint the exact moment where the personal touch has the biggest impact. It’s usually not in the ‘just joined’ stage but I suspect after the first contribution to the community.

(Steve Bridger) #9

This is a classy thread, and just the kind of topic where I would look to the FeverBee community for guidance. Thanks for starting it, @Nick_Emmett

(Jessica Malnik) #10

@HAWK That’s an awesome feature. I was mainly just being snarky with that comment, and didn’t expect anyone to actually act on it. :slight_smile:

@richard_millington Great point per usual. Timing is everything.

@stevebridger Agreed! :slight_smile:

(Sarah Hawk) #11

It was a very fair point however! It is an awesome feature, however I’ve learned that because we use SSO here that it’s not an option. Disappointing. I’ve been in touch with Justin over the weekend anyway, so we may well see him here.