An online community can be a valuable resource for associations, providing a platform for members to connect, collaborate, and engage with the organisation. Here are seven ways to build a successful online community for your association:
Clearly define the purpose and goals of the community.
Before launching an online community, it’s important to define its purpose and goals. This could include creating a space for members to share resources and knowledge, fostering a sense of community and connection, or providing a platform for members to engage with the association and its leadership.
Invite and onboard new members.
Invite members to join the community and provide a clear onboarding process to help them get started. This could include an orientation video or tutorial, a welcome message or guide, and an introduction to the community’s guidelines and expectations.
Encourage members to actively participate in the community by posting content, asking questions, and engaging with others. This could include hosting weekly discussion topics, hosting live events or webinars, or providing incentives for participation such as prizes or recognition.
Moderate and manage the community.
It’s important to have a team in place to moderate and manage the community, including enforcing guidelines and addressing any issues that may arise. This can help create a safe and welcoming environment for all members.
Foster a sense of community.
Encourage a sense of community by promoting social connections and creating a welcoming and inclusive atmosphere. This could include hosting virtual social events or providing opportunities for members to connect with each other based on shared interests or professional goals.
Keep the content fresh and relevant.
Keep the community active and engaged by regularly posting new content and updating existing content to ensure it remains relevant and useful. This could include sharing industry news and updates, hosting expert guest speakers, or highlighting member achievements and success stories.
Engage with members.
Make sure to regularly engage with members and respond to their questions and feedback. This can help build trust and strengthen the relationship between the association and its members.
By following these seven steps, you can build a successful online community for your association. From clearly defining the purpose and goals of the community to fostering a sense of community and keeping the content fresh and relevant, there are many ways to create an engaging and valuable online space for your members.
If you would like an online community for your association, take a look at Trybz. Trybz in an online community platform specifically designed for associations. To see it in action, check out the Answers for Associations online community for association professionals.