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Slide Notes

Creating online community is one of the hardest things you will ever do. Its hard because:

* Easy to miss WHERE and on WHAT to form community.
* Control HURTS,but you have to start with control and ease off.
* This start one way and evolve creates the most difficult marketing tactic to consistently create.

Creating Online Community

Published at Nov 06, 2015
Creating online community is HARD. This Haiku Deck shares "behind the curtain" secrets to help you build an engaged and engaging online community.



Secret Life of Online Communities
Creating online community is one of the hardest things you will ever do. Its hard because:

* Easy to miss WHERE and on WHAT to form community.
* Control HURTS,but you have to start with control and ease off.
* This start one way and evolve creates the most difficult marketing tactic to consistently create.
Photo by davidwallace

Community Secrets

Community's Pillars

Two posts on CrowdFunde's blog help supplement this slide:

The New SEO: 3 Pillars of Online Community

New SEO: Why Online Community Is A Game

Photo by respontour


User Generated Content
User Generated Content: 1:9:90 Rule

1% of visitors will contribute something of material value to your website.

9% will support the contributions of the 1%ers and possibly some of your content if asked in the right way.

90% READ but are very important and should not be considered "passive" since their absence can implode a website's rank.
Photo by mkhmarketing


Business Intelligence creates engagement & scale.
Business Intelligence
You can't guide, curate and shape community without DATA and Key Performance Indicators. At CrowdFunde (http://www.crowdfunde.com) we are creating a "Velocity" metric that values shares over money.

Metrics should define different things for different sites. Attribution is always a bear, so don't get lost in those woods. Create some informative Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) and watch them.

If you can take ACTIONS then keep 'em. If you can't change them. KPIs = actions to take that move you closer to your goals.


Curating THEIR content creates US.
Their Content on YOUR website is very powerful because chances are good THEY (your customers) will support your share with social shares.

When THEY share across their social nets you've just tapped "friends of friends" or people who don't know YOU except via their friend.

Tapping friends of friends is te new advertising and the only one that works because as we become more SOCIAL our recommendations, comments and conversations with friends form purchase intent.

Once a customer purchases you want them to crow about it. See McKinsey's David Edelman's HBR post Branding in a Digital Age http://hbr.org/2010/12/branding-in-the-digital-age-youre-spending-your-money-in-all-the-wrong-places/ar/1 for more on this.


Rewards others SEE, social rewards, form community.
Boy Scouts are great examples of the power of the tribe. They work hard for those badges. Some motivation is internal, but social kudos and social approval plays a big role in the value, display and importance of rewards. Few will become "Eagle Scouts", but the aspiration (to become an Eagle Scout) drives the entire reward system. Keep that in mind when creating a "reward system". What is your ultimate Eagle Scout that creates aspirations more than actual "winners" of the award (because bar is set HIGH).
Photo by dpstyles™


Creates ultimate and lasting goal = more game play.
Without gamification community doesn't scale or last. Remember 4 Square's "Mayor of Checkins"? Great idea as a social reward, but without evolution and ongoing investment the cool idea decays and stops being motivating.
Photo by Marc_Smith

Creation secrets

These "behind the curtain" community secrets provide How To ways to create effective and lasting online community - the only thing you and your online marketing team can "defend" online.
Photo by eriwst


Don't control, guide with a light hand.
You will have to push your community away from the dock. Line up members before you open your community's doors and watch your KPIs closely. Look to lighten your touch over time. You want to do LESS and LESS as the magic of the engine you've created does MORE and MORE.


Find 1%er Contributors & Give 'em Jobs.
Every community MUST HAVE leaders and your 1%ers those special contributors who are willing to sacrifice and who have commitment to your CAUSE, may be your most valuable "employees". The sooner you give these critical supporters jobs the faster you scale.

CAUSE is an important word. No one joins a community to BUY something. We join communities of LIKE ME people who have some LARGE mission. Even modern "money changers" join to evangelize the "cause" of saving money.

Even in the most BASE community (base to you) there is a cause. There is always a cause.
Photo by Leo Reynolds


Sponsors do LESS & LESS not more & more.
As your CAUSE and CONTENT and CURATION inspire you should being getting more and more from doing less and less. You see this magic show up in scaling KPIs and lowering commitments of time, money and other resources.
Photo by Leo Reynolds


Share great content across network.
One IMPORTANT role sponsors will play until they can hand even this communication over to their 1%ers is to "normalize" great content. This means to make sure GREATNESS is evenly shared and communicated across the growing network. Any imbalance creates a wobble of envy and jealousy and that wobble will blow any community apart in time.
Photo by betta design


Always be moving (listen, learn, adapt)
No matter what DO SOMETHING daily. Worry about if what you are doing NOW is the wrong thing later. Any STIMULUS that creates ANY response is valuable at first. As you refine your KPIs, listening and strategies the bar will naturally travel UP. The idea is to isolate, set goals and then rinse and repeat.

Tobias Walter from Shoeboxed talked about TCR or Traffic, Conversion, Revenue. First work on TRAFFIC. Next work on CONVERSION and finally REVENUE. Buy isolating each major NEED and improving each in its own right and then moving to the next you create a positive upward spiral. Brilliant explanation of testing and web marketing.

Martin Smith

Founder CrowdFunde, @CrowdFunde
Photo by i k o