Community is for your members, not for your organization

Last week I was telling you about how engaging for the sake of engagement has pushed old school social media platforms like Facebook away from true social engagement and into an age of clickbait, brand-ambassador advertising. It’s exactly this kind of behavior and engagement for engagement’s sake that can end up killing the real community…

Ethics of digital engagement: How far is too far in the quest for attention?

If you’re a regular reader, then you know I’m a big fan of TED Talks. A recent episode titled “Manipulation” got me thinking about the community manager’s role in the debate over social media and mental disorders. I won’t pretend to have any of the answers here—even the National Institutes of Health agree that there’s…

Community manager toolkit: Scale your community with volunteers

At some point you may have found yourself at work long after everyone else has left, the fluorescent lights buzzing above your head, and the sound of a lonely unanswered phone ringing through the empty hallways. Yet you remain, typing madly and wishing you had a clone to help you with all of the work…

Community managers unite! Handling conflict in online communities

Last week Catherine Hackney of Confident Communities Consulting, Arianna Rehak of AssociationSuccess.org, and I led the first “Community Managers Unite!” Crowdcast. I had a blast and hope you’ll watch the recording below. We heard from lots of association community managers about how they handle different kinds of conflict in their online communities. These ranged from…

Three signs your association is ready for an online community

While I may be biased toward online communities–I think lots of organizations can find ways to incorporate community into their business strategies–I will also be the first to tell you that there is a right time, and a wrong time, to launch your association’s community. Before you can even start building your private social network,…

Using discussion forums and online communities to generate leads

If you are a marketer or salesperson, you probably have a strategy for using social media to build your brand. But have you considered the power of niche discussion forums to generate sales and to build your business network? If not, now is the time to take a look at how you can leverage these…

What is thanatosensitivity and what does it have to do with my community?

If you don’t acknowledge a member’s death, that person’s online contributions may live on, but their memory will quickly fade. Acknowledging death allows your online community to give special consideration to a person’s contributions and bring a sense of closure to the gap that can be left by a member’s passing. In case you haven’t…