Online communities are not a new phenomenon, but they are now capturing the hearts and minds of social media users around the globe. There seems to be an online community for every walk of life or group. But the underlying operations of a given community can vary drastically, depending on whether it is consumer-focused or a business-to-business community. If you are building or running an online community, or a member of one or more, it is important to understand the differences to maximize the value of your online home. Some organizations do not realize there are a variety of different online community models to explore – each with its own set of benefits and challenges. Below is a brief overview of the different types of community models:
The world of social business continues to evolve. No one considers it a fad anymore.
The boundaries between the physician – patient relationship have always been difficult as the relationship is based on trust, intimacy…
As I sit at my desk thinking about a new blog post topic, I struggle to write. Not because of…
Failure. It’s not a word anyone likes. Yet it is common occurrence with innovation projects. When projects fail, there’s a natural inclination to avoid looking for the reasons why. This is especially true for online customer communities. A failure with customers (Ouch!) is far more painful than any internally-facing problem, because it touches the people and companies that are core to the organizations’ success.
Times have changed and communities, advanced. We live in a world where we can gain instant access to connections and information about everything from a specialist’s point of view to travel suggestions to how to fix a fussy smartphone app. These changes are unarguably for the better. However, there are core principles about online community that John Coate’s presentation — indeed, his whole body of work — remind us are a fundamental part of whatever flavor of online community building we do. Starting in 1992, and revised twice since, Coate’s wrote an essay called “InnKeeping in CyberSpace” which still serves as an up-to-the-minute guide to online community best practices.
So no to social media muddle and focus on the customer journey.
So here are 10 things I think a skilled community manager brings to the organization – and the community – they support:
Online communities which enable learning and draw directly from peer-peer experiences are by definition a success.