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MANAGING YOUR ONLINE COMMUNITY

Updated: Aug 12

This is an article “Managing Your Online Community” by Marc Primo Warren


With all the craziness that’s going on today, people have converged within the digital space now more than ever to foster communities and connect with each other. For years, the internet has been a vital communication tool for all of us, whether socially or for business. It’s actually funny how many people have felt alone and disconnected when on social media. With many pointing out how relationships via the internet often become superficial, let us miss social cues and allow trolling, and in just how people quantify everything with ‘likes’ and ‘shares’ instead of quality connections, we are now learning that establishing real relationships is what truly makes a difference now that we need communities to hold us all together as we face today’s many hurdles.


With the onslaught of COVID-19 all over the world, companies have started holding meetings online, brands have stepped up their marketing strategies, and people have relied on video conferencing tools and social media to somehow feel a sense of normalcy.


If you are still working to promote your online presence, this might be the best time to give it a little push when everyone is practically online most of the day. In order to properly manage your online community, here are a few things you should know first.


What is Community Management?


When establishing your online presence, building an authentic community of followers is essential to get your name out there. This means you’ll have to create various types of interaction with your audiences (both in person and online), so that you can open up opportunities for yourself and your audiences to communicate and grow together.


You should define your tone, voice, and human elements that you associate with your own brand to engage your target audiences more effectively. In turn, they will offer you some feedback, comments, and suggestions so you can improve your online presence while increasing support.


Types of Community Management


These types of community management can help you create campaigns that can push your brand to more audiences online.


Customer Support


Updating your FAQs regularly, holding dialogues with your followers, or maintaining your community standards and discussions are just a few ways to gain customer support. Doing these will allow you to get to know your customers better and open up communication portals where they can send you their feedback so you can improve what you can offer them and make your brand stronger online.


Product Innovation


Both falling into the reactive and proactive type of community management, product innovation allows your followers or customers to share their ideas with how you can improve your product, service or brand. By giving them a sense of ownership through surveys or online discussions, you are able to address their pain points immediately and adjust accordingly.


Acquisition


Integrating acquisition and advocacy in your community management practices allows you to directly get in touch with your customers, target audiences, influencers, and brand supporters. Most of these are the ones who can help you establish your online presence in more ways than one such as word-of-mouth, affiliate programs, and via their own social media accounts. One surefire way to create community with your audiences is to create brand ambassador programs that can lead to more followers or customers. In other words, you promote their online presence along with yours so you can both help each other out.


Social media management


Another type of community management strategy is one that promotes inclusivity and belongingness for your audiences to build stronger connections. By choosing the right social media platform based on your audience’s demographics, interests, and preferences, you can establish a community of like-minded minds who are interested in your brand. You can easily gather community data on social media and identify what content you can offer them. You can measure your progress by reviewing the boost in community memberships, number of members who engage in discussions, social media impressions such as likes and shares, and general online traffic to your website.


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