Congratulations! You’ve started building your own online community. Now it’s time to start making its presence known to everyone.
So how exactly do you start attracting members? First you have to establish awareness among your target audience. You have to familiarize the public with your community’s name, purpose, and goals, and make it appealing enough to get them to sign up. Here are 5 ways on how you can do that.
Start by building excitement and promoting your community launch on your existing online channels. This could be your website, social media accounts, newsletter, and even your apps.
Something as simple as adding a link to your email signature will already create a great impact. It doesn’t take much effort, but it reaches basically everyone in your mailing list. Other things you can do are add a hero banner to your website, use pop-up notifications, create an article on your blog, write about it on your newsletter, post a video, or share a link on your social media accounts.
In fact, you can even brief your sales team and customer service representatives, and create spiels for them so they can mention it in their calls. This creates the opportunity for conversation around your community. If your customers are interested, they can get answers to their questions right then and there.
Take advantage of the connections and relationships you’ve built by promoting your community to your personal and professional network. Your network can be an excellent source of new members, and creating partnerships with them will create opportunities for you to spread word about your community to a broader audience.
It’s also good to find other spaces that are relevant to your community. Participate in blogs, groups, and forums where your target audience is likely hanging around. This allows you to introduce yourself and be a part of their conversations. Once you’ve established a connection, create an opening to invite them to your community.
You know how organizations say your employees are your most valuable asset and top brand ambassadors? Well, the same can be said for your community members!
Your members are the best people to grow your community base. If they’re getting value out of the experience, chances are they will mention it to their peers — whether or not they share the same interest. When people love or enjoy something, you can definitely expect them to rave about it!
A more effective way of maximizing this opportunity is to create a competition or referral program inside the community. This way, your members are rewarded when they successfully invite new people. Of course, you should always be honest to your members about your intentions. Message it in a way that promotes a common goal, which is to grow the community, and create an active and vibrant environment.
Of course, finding new members is one thing, getting them to stay and participate is a completely different ball game! Member onboarding is one of the first and most critical steps in member engagement and retention. Get off to a good start by reading our tips for onboarding customers.