What would help you build a more successful community today?


(Richard Millington) #21

Hey @rwilde28,

I’ve shared my thoughts on this before here.

In a meeting with Airbnb last year, they mentioned they hadn’t used it for years.

The problem (in my experience) is it tends to force people through a narrow tunnel within the community instead of figuring out what are the best contributions people can make to the community and encourage them to make them.

It assumes people will continually increase their level of activity when in practice most lurkers, for example, are happy enough just lurking.

I think the principle (people can become more committed to a group over time) is sound (although prone to survivor bias in some cases). We’ve had some data that suggests people do participate more in the community the longer they remain a member (at least up to a certain degree). But this is only from those who were active from the very early days.

There is also a challenge in how to execute a commitment curve. Most of the writing I’ve seen on this shows how it can work in theory rather than how it has been executed in practice. i.e. how will you identify who is in each group? How do you communicate the next steps to them? How will you know if they have taken them?

This requires either a lot of tech development (costly, fiddly, and only possible in certain platforms), using autoresponders (<20% open rates and far lower click-through rates + dozens of unique journeys), or doing cohort groups and ignoring whether people take the actions or not.

However, if anyone knows someone who is successfully using it I’d love to join their community and study it. I’m very eager to learn about contradictory examples here from @Carrie_Jones or anyone else. I know it’s a popular tool so I’d love to be wrong on this one.

(Carrie Melissa Jones) #22

I recommend using it to map out a thoughtful strategy for getting people to become more engaged through asks at different points in their community “lifespan” and determining what meaningful engagement even means. I use this for planning community launches or auditing existing communities.

(Richard Millington) #23

Thanks @Carrie_Jones!

Are there any examples I can join and see here?

I’d be really eager to see how they’re executing it or any tips on how to identify who is in which group and how the asks are communicated.

Do you have anything on the conversion rates of each level too?

(Carrie Melissa Jones) #24

That work is proprietary to myself and my clients. If I publish a case study, I will let you know.

(Rebecca Wilde) #25

My internal community is a very new one made up of up of a group of consultants (who are all experts in their own field). I am finding it hard to identify different categories of members, yes there are lurkers and regulars but other than that its difficult. How do I set an objective for them to share knowledge with one another when there isn’t the classic expert to newcomer relationship?

(Piper_Wilson) #26

In this community, we used to have a, “What are you working on this week?” thread. Maybe something like that can spark some connections?

(Jason Preater) #27

I know about building communities, but I know little about building an online community. That is why I am here. That is what interests me. I work with a small NGO that helps schools develop democratic procedures- meetings, committees and, yes, community. It is called Summerhill Democratics.

We have a good following and a growing base of clients who share similar problems. With this in mind, we set up a forum on our website. We thought that people would find it useful to share their experiences and (don’t say it too loud) not ask us the same questions all the time. We’d also like the forum to be a place where people with a casual interest can find answers to some of their immediate questions.

That is the theory. The practice is proving a little more complicated. People just seem to want to talk to us. The forum is empty and I wonder what we are doing wrong.

(Richard Millington) #28

@rwilde28 Yes, as mentioned earlier identifying who is in each group does tend to be a problem. You can use previous levels of activity from whatever is native to your platform run SQL queries (as we do) or invite members to self-select themselves.

All have their pros and cons.

If you want to share some of your background/platform, we might be able to give more help.

@jason - welcome! really happy to have you here. Sounds like an interesting community, I don’t love the name, but I really love the idea :slight_smile:

The problem is probably conceptual. Can you try diagnosing using this? -> https://www.feverbee.com/stay-engaged/

(Rebecca Wilde) #29

@richard_millington Thanks for coming back to me. Some background, the community was set up at the back end of last year (so very new indeed) and is made up of 70 tech consultants and a core team of 20. We use a platform called Zoho Connect that has forums and manuals to facilitate knowledge sharing. Despite the community being so new, I am already able to identify active regular members and lurkers from the group. I wouldn’t say we could define any as experts, as they all have such varied interests and experience in their own area of tech. Should I therefore base a strategy on targeting the regular members who are already contributing to do more of the same, as lurkers usually remain so?