So since we published the Online Community ROI guide I’ve had my eye on developing some sort of tool or resource which would enable community professionals to better calculate the ROI of their community.
The data to do this already exists, it just tends to be stored in two different places.
- The community platform (this holds the engagement-level data).
- The customer database (this holds the sales/purchases data).
If you can find a way to track behavior from one to another, or easily match up the records from the two, you can run some great analyses to fundamentally prove the value of a community, whatever that value means to you.
It is possible today, but it’s a lot of hard work.
Since tech development isn’t our speciality, I’m keen to get the community’s opinions and ideas. At the moment it feels like this requires something similar to Google Analytics which you install on both the website and the community platform and can track both. But i’m very open to get ideas and opinions about how this might work.