7 Tips for Increasing Community Engagement
Creating consistent and genuine interactions within an online community is challenging. We have some tips for how you can revitalize your community engagement.
Any creator who has tried to create a thriving community knows how hard it can be to keep your members engaged. But figuring out how to create a more interactive and energizing experience for your community members is worth the trial and error to figure it out.
There are numerous benefits to creating a clear community engagement strategy for your brand. Learning how to engage community members means less work for you, more interactivity between your members, and more growth for your brand.
Ahead, we’re providing you with some community engagement tips to bring your brand to the next level.
7 effective community engagement strategies
When you take the time to create a good community engagement strategy, you’re investing in creating a more welcoming, interactive, and successful online community. At the heart of all effective community engagement strategies is the desire to more deeply forge connections with and between your members.
Let’s explore some of our favorite community engagement tips.
1. Build a community space for your members
If you’re a creator that is trying to build and grow your community, then the most important step you can take is creating an actual community space for your members.
The unfortunate reality for many people who have built a following on social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter is that having a lot of followers doesn’t always translate to engagement. In fact, it’s very challenging for creators to foster interactions between their followers because these platforms don’t have the tools to make that happen easily.
But when you create a dedicated community space for your brand, your followers become members of a community. And this isn’t just a difference in wording. To make that clearer, try answering this question: what is a community?
A community is a group of people coming together to accomplish a common goal together. When you just have followers, they are connected to you through their love of your content, but they don’t necessarily connect with others interested in your work. Creating a community space will allow you to bring all of these people together, so they can interact with one another, and keep the conversation going after you’ve stepped away for the day.
2. Have great community guidelines and moderation
After you’ve created a community space for your members, the next community engagement tip is to build out guidelines and moderation practices.
It’s no secret that when you’re dealing with online communities, everyone has different expectations for what are acceptable ways of interacting and what aren’t. Creating a set of rules and guidelines for your members for how they are expected to interact and what is allowed/not allowed is important.
You may be thinking that this might actually be a community engagement strategy that stops member interaction, but it’s not. When every member is on the same page for what’s expected of them, they will actually feel more comfortable posting and interacting with others.
Additionally, when it comes to moderation, while you may have to moderate at the beginning, choosing loyal members in your community to be moderators down the line is a great way to reward those who have stuck around and kept the group energized.
3. Create a strong ‘new member’ welcome experience
Who doesn’t like to feel welcomed when they join a group, service, or something else? An incredibly effective community engagement tactic is making sure that your members feel noticed and valued.
Creating a welcome experience for your members can be as simple as setting up an automated message that addresses them by name, directs them to the community guidelines, and maybe even tells them to post a short bio in their member profile or on a discussion board.
We are big fans of having an “Introduce Yourself” post in your community space where all of your members can respond to the same set of questions and then comment on each other’s posts. Not only is this a great way to facilitate interactions between your members, but it’s a simple way to quickly get to know them without asking them questions individually.
4. Be a responsive leader
Building an online community is a bit different from building a following online. When you’re gaining followers you’re mainly posting content with the hopes of gaining engagement from your supporters. It’s less about you interacting with a bunch of other people’s posts and more about them interacting with yours.
A great community engagement strategy, however, is to be a leader that shows they are invested in what their members are doing. That can mean spending time each day commenting on member posts with feedback, a simple ‘good job,’ or something else.
But there’s another reason to be a responsive leader and it goes to one of our other community engagement tips. When members see how you, the leader of the community interacts with others, they can follow your example. In practice, your actions should be an embodiment of the community guidelines you created.
5. Diversify your content
If you build your community space on an online community platform then you will have the ability to create a wide variety of content. Diversifying your content is a great community engagement strategy because it allows you to appeal to a wide array of interests in your community.
What might that look like in practice? You could try having discussion board posts that could detail community announcements, Q&As, or even polls. But don’t get stuck only posting text-based content. Consider utilizing features such as live and pre-recorded video, pictures and graphics, and audio posts. Some people might not have the time to interact with a long article, but they could have a few minutes to interact with one of these other options.
Creating a diverse repertoire of content is an incredibly effective way to increase community engagement.
6. Encourage your members to share about themselves
If you’d like to have an online community that is filled with members that interact, then you’ll need to encourage them to share about themselves. This starts with how you welcome new members to the community, but you can go further than that too.
Another great community engagement tactic is to make sure that your members fill out their member profiles. This will make it much easier for people to tell the group what they are all about, where they are from, and maybe even some fun facts.
On top of that though, you can spotlight people in your community when they do something exceptional. Maybe they will have a great comment on one of your posts, or they could have revealed something personal about themselves to the group to make a point. These are actions that should be encouraged and acknowledged.
7. Plan events and activities for community engagement
Our final community engagement tip is to plan events and activities for your members to partake in. It can be easy to fall into the trap of simply posting content, commenting on members’ posts, and bouncing. But if you can offer your members things to look forward to in the future, you will increase the energy and excitement of your community.
Even if your community is primarily online-based, there are plenty of tools at your disposal. Consider having a Zoom meeting or happy hour where our members can get together for a casual hangout. Another option is allowing your members the ability to create subgroups where they can more bring together people who share similar interests related (or not!) to your community’s purpose. And of course, you can try hosting a virtual event with some guest speakers, presentations, or talks that your members can come to and interact with.
Mighty Networks is the best place to build a highly interactive online community
We’ve covered a lot of different ways for creators like you to plan effective community engagement strategies, but none of it matters if you don’t choose a great online community platform.
The best online community platforms will give you powerful, flexible, and easy-to-use tools to continue growing your community and providing your members with unique experiences they can’t get anywhere else.
Unfortunately, a lot of community building platforms out there don’t offer you the features you’ll need to accomplish all of the community engagement tactics we detailed above. But the platform we’ve built at Mighty Networks does everything we’ve talked about and more.
When you build a Mighty Network you can do more than simply create an online space for your members. You can build online courses, offer memberships, host virtual events, and you can do it all across web, iOS, and Android. In short, your community will be available anywhere.
Creating an online community for your brand is an important step for any creator, but it doesn’t have to be a hard task. We understand the importance of online communities and have watched creators utilize our platform to build networks the world has needed to see today. We’re ready to see what you’re going to create on the platform and are here to help you out in the process.
So, what kind of online community will you build?
[Start building your online community today]((https://new.mn.co/?plan=free-trial)
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