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Creating and managing an online community

June 20, 2009

Creating and managing an online community

In addition to these ideas, what else has worked for you?

Attracting new members to your online community:

1. Find champions to help moderate and keep discussions going; Controversial topics are fine
2. Add value; maintain value for current members
3. Free content; compelling to draw people in
4. Events
5. Marketing partnerships
6. Invites
7. Personal notes / recognition
8. Stationary gifts – personalized
9. Contests
10. Advice
11. Keywords
12. Add community chat to services such as Twitter Chat schedule
13. Word of mouth from community evangelists
14. Offline events
15. Great welcome process to integrate new folks into community and its culture
16. Ease of access to the community and helpful members
17. Spotlighting community members and their offline events
18. Partner with like-minded but unrelated orgs – cooperative crossovers
19. Introduce event speakers or experts to the community
20. Make each member feel responsible for success of the community and encourage them to reach out
21. Community manager needs to be personal – proven tactic to draw in people – lead by example
22. Newsletter that members can forward to friends
23. Share widgets
24. Comments easy – OpenID
25. Validate new members thru registration
26. Provide easy to use tools for reticent members: like/dislike, as ways to begin
27. Increase status by number of posts, popularity
28. Make it easy for lurkers to interact. Shrink your comment box so short comments don’t look embarrassingly tiny.
29. Use polls
30. Different levels of community: special interest groups
31. 1 to 1 private convos w/quiet ones to get them involved
32. Free entrance to an event for minimum post count
33. Post pictures of events, allow comments on photos, ask members to add captions
34. Exclusive groups built around well-defined niches are more valuable to advertisers and content creators than everyone
35. Peer-submitted video
36. Ranters: ask “what is your goal here?”

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