Another excellent month for articles. Here are my picks for the top five.
1. Understanding Your Community’s Value
As a community manager, your job is at risk if you can’t prove that your community has a positive impact on the company’s bottom line. Compiling data proving the benefits of hosting an online community isn’t just good sense — it’s job security. In this post, Forrester analyst Zachary Reiss Davis details how to quantify the costs and benefits, and put it all together in a way that proves the community is an investment that pays dividends.
2. Is Your Online Community Worth Your Customers’ or Members’ Time?
Time is money, or so the old saying goes. In this post, Joshua Paul urges us to think along these lines when trying to attract members to an online community. Don’t ask why people would spend time on your community, ponder why they would invest their time. If your community can’t solve members’ problems, answer their questions, or make their lives easier, you need to re-think your community strategy.
Once again, Richard Millington gives us a blog post chock full of useful, actionable information on how to build community. From welcoming newcomers to reaching out to veterans, you’re bound to find a few tips that you can use today. (My favorite is #27.)
4. Avoid Online Customer Community Failure
Why do online communities fail? More importantly, how can you keep your community from failing? In this post, Vanessa DiMauro lists some of the common mistakes would-be community builders make and how to avoid them.
5. 10 Things You’re Doing to Kill Your Community
Sometimes, it’s good to get a refresher course in the basics. In this post, Rosemary O’Neill provides an excellent checklist of things not to do in your community. Whether you run an older community or are starting a new one, read through this list and make sure you’re not turning off members by making these basic mistakes.
Photo courtesy of and copyright Free Range Stock