Community Chat Weekly #9

Community 2020, Reddit Explodes, and Community Secrets from Instagram Employee #13

CCW is a newsletter about building and growing communities, featuring collected tweets, posts and thoughts from various community leaders.


❓ Question of the Week

Do you have a formal community policy? How do you enforce rules and guidelines?

Reply with your thoughts on the QOTW for a chance to be featured in next weeks email!

Last week's question was "How many hours per week do you spend on your community?" and 19 of you replied. Answers ranged from about 1 hour to a whopping 60 hours! Also, on average, Discord community owners said they spent significantly more time per week than Slack community owners.


📚More predictions on the future of digital community

Another week, another big community research report release. Last week we brought you the CMX summary, and this week we're pulling the best parts from the Vanilla Forums report on trends in the community world for 2020. The Community Chat Team left no interesting nugget undiscovered. Enjoy!

Community platform choice has big downstream community impacts

Most community leaders are picking their platform before they’ve defined their strategy. This is a risky move, as the platform affects everything that you do!

For companies, community still has a long way to go when it comes to executive buy-in

The report found that only 48% of executives were “fully supportive” of community approaches, while an additional 15% “saw potential.” When looking back even further to 2017, only 21% of online communities had executive sponsorship.

Know your users and build personas!

Community Managers should make use of their greater understanding of data by creating user profiles, or member segments, within their community. Knowing what types of users are in the community can help you create predictable patterns of user behavior and know how to address each segment so that they get what they want.

Start by drilling into some individual customers to see what they’re doing—then build three (or more) random personas.” To build accurate personas, you need to take a look at your data again, this goes back to making data-driven decisions. Assess who these people are, what they are interested in, why they visit your community, what they do when they’re in your community and how they engage. When you understand your members, you can provide them a better experience.

Return on Investment (ROI) for corporate community managers will be a big theme in 2020 and beyond

According to a panel of experts from 200 corporate community managers surveyed, in 2020 it is predicted that community builders will finally be able to show how community contributes to the bottom line through the use of data.

Community Managers need more automation and time saving

One solution to make communities more engaged is to free up some time for Community Managers so they have the ability to actually plan and strategize.

Automation can reduce the amount of monotonous, yet mandatory community tasks and Community Managers’ jobs much easier. For example, “Even sending out a weekly, bi-weekly or monthly newsletter to your community members can be automated, which helps alleviate pressure on the Community Manager.”

Community Tools are on the rise

Individuals and organizations with an online community have seen an increase in the number of tools that they have at their disposal over the past few years. As a result, organizations are better equipped to capture customer touchpoints in a more holistic way than they had been able to do in the past. These tools include, but aren’t limited to: new communication platforms, ideation, gamification, Q&A, Knowledge bases, and data and analytical capabilities

For companies with communities, a good "Community Experience" (CX) can reap huge benefits on business goals


🐦 Tweets

A contrarian take on community guidelines. Sidebar – It feels like we feature a Tweet from David Spinks in every newsletter. If you're on Twitter, you should just follow him already...he Tweets good community stuffs.

When starting a community, choosing a platform, application, or channel is one of the most important decisions you'll make.

Even though chat-based communities like Slack and Discord are growing exponentially, Reddit isn't going anywhere anytime soon.


📝 Blog Posts

A handful of recommended readings from the past week.

Communities Can Grow Too Quickly (2 minute read)

An oldie but a goodie! More of a cynical take on the notion that 'all growth is good' when it comes to expanding your community presence.


Early Instagram Employee Shares Community Building Secrets (5 minute read)

Bailey Richardson was one of Instagram's first 13 employees at the time it was acquired by Facebook for $1 billion. She now runs a consultancy that guides groups of all kinds and sizes on how to build and support community.


💬 Join the Community!

Did you know that Community Chat is more than just a newsletter? We have two communities, one on Discord and one on Slack, where community leaders and builders connect with each other and share tips and tricks.

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Have a suggestion for a piece of content we should include next week? Email us and let us know!