I really hope you had an increase festive season…or at least a relaxing break for a few days before you dive right back in to what you do best building incredible communities.
It’s easy to get so bogged down in the day-to-day minutia that we overlook the big goals, or the big wins, we’re aiming for in our community.
Let’s try to work together over the coming year and achieve some of the goals we set out to achieve.
If you’re willing, I’d love to try an experiment. I’d like you to select a goal below (or add your own) and share it with the group.
What do you plan to achieve in the next year? Pick than one if you like, but at least pick one.
Will you be moving or improving your platforms?
Will you be building a better system for measuring and proving value?
Will you be working to develop growth systems?
Will you be increasing the level of participation?
Will you be developing an influencer program?
Will you be creating incredible projects for members to work together?
Will you be hosting your own offline events?
Will you be working to build more internal support?
I’m really excited to learn what you’re working on in the coming year. Hopefully we can work together to make these goals a distinct reality.
Complete and publish my second book about online communities (hoping to get the first draft done by the end of January. A lot of you have seen the progress of this already).
Develop this community. Since Hawk left, we’ve had limited time to spend on this community. I’d like to narrow and refine the community concept, drive activity in a more specific direction than we do today.
Launch a directory of the best community examples from each industry.
Also, very open to anything you want to see in this community too.
Will you be moving or improving your platforms? We always look to improve the platform. More specifically we will be making several customization’s over the year as we have for the last couple of years
Will you be building a better system for measuring and proving value? **Better system, as in customization’s to better serve our customers? Yes we will **
Will you be working to develop growth systems? Yes of course. In the next week or two, we will be developing Marketing plans (engagement and getting new customers) Content plans and development (customization’s and enhancements)
Will you be increasing the level of participation? I hope so
Will you be developing an influencer program? **I’m not sure exactly what this means, but I look to some of our countries to also push engagement though employee programs. We have one digital program, in Canada that gets the employees engaged within our digital platforms called the Blackbelt program, which includes our customer community. This pushes the employees to use the platforms and get their customers engaged in the digital platforms. **
Will you be creating incredible projects for members to work together? No, I haven’t thought about this one
Will you be hosting your own offline events?This is tough, but I would like to do something more like this
Will you be working to build more internal support? Yes, we have to. Out community is based on our expertise. I am also working with suppliers, that sell our products, to engage to answer complex questions that customers have
Goal #1 for me/Tidelift is to hire a community lead. (If it is kosher to post that job listing here, I will, but not sure if that is OK or not?)
That’s means; ends is “build a healthy community of open source developers who are interested in building sustainable careers around open source projects”. In keeping with Feverbee’s emphasis on outreach as a key driver of early communities, numeric targets for outreach are part of my quarterly OKRs.
This is all being built from scratch, so the answer to all your questions is “yes”, only question is when - offline events and influencer programs are probably 2019 goals, rather than 2018. (And so far I don’t need more internal support
A couple of initial things from my perspective, in no real order and subject to change as we have a new Director of Community starting at the end of the month:
1: Increase our member usage. We currently see only 10% of all our registered users logging in each month - this needs to go up. In terms of our customer base we see around a third of our customer accounts represented in the monthly log ins - again, this needs to go up.
2: Increase our internal participation - either from an engagement perspective or from a content production.
3: Produce a robust view of the Community’s ROI - one of the missing pieces we have at the minute and one I really want to dig in to. Our new director will likely be able help - I’m looking forward to letting you who it is as she’s a bit of a legend!
From a personal perspective:
1: I want to write more on my blog, which has been fairly redundant the last year or so - I want to pick this up through 2018.
2: Meet more people - there are more Community managers out here in the UK than we realise - I want to meet more of them in the analogue world in 2018. (I miss the Feverbee SPRINT events for this, it was a great opportunity). And maybe in the US - I have a couple of potential trips lined up (Vegas in June, possibly SF in October/November)
Now that I’ve got a brief respite between community meetings, I can add my goals:
Finish the internal interviews necessary to codify an official strategy with buy-in from relevant departments/individuals.
Create a “catalog of experts” for members to reach out to when they’re looking for help on a specific area. (Also, this will give me a list of people to tag for unanswered posts relevant to their knowledge.)
Finally start measuring actual sense of community. (Pulling rather heavily from the questions in Buzzing Communities.)
The two books which have really inspired me (from the 30,000 foot level when it comes to community) are Bowling Alone and The Quest for Community. More useful/practical books are Influence and Thinking Fast and Slow.
It’s been over two years since I’ve been active here and that was pretty minimal. I had a contract back then to start working on developing an online community of bicycle advocates but it died early in the planning stages.
I’m back with my own gig! About 18 months ago I created a Facebook Group for mountain bikers interested in developing their riding skills and it’s now at the point (nearing 3,000 members with 2K engaged in some way each month) that I’ve made the decision to move to a separate platform, most likely Discourse.
So my goal for 2018, once I move this ‘community of practice,’ is to get to critical mass during this ‘inception phase’ by the end of the year.