Human needs are the same and continuous flow of information is required if we want to keep virtual communities alive and engaged. I want to share some tips with you which are working for me while maintaining three virtual communities – internal colleagues at Yammer, my local Social Media Club chapter, and expecting December mothers at Baby Center India:
- You would have heard this quite often and know this by heart: Post regular content which will bring value to your members. There is no harm in sharing informative articles posted by other authors as well rather it is useful as you are not always pushing self-created content.
- Action cited in point number one is important, but this is one way of interacting, you are posting content and many a times you might not receive comments on the articles. How to involve your members? Quiz, polls are a great way of gathering insights. Try it, you might not get it right the first time but neither did Robert Bruce!
- I love contests and whenever I win any gift hampers, goodies while participating in a twitter/ Facebook contest, I feel great! Your members also share the feeling. Trust me, people love contests. They are a great way to engage your members. However, do give at least a week’s time so that your members get warmed up to the contest idea, know what it is all about and of course what is in return for them!
- There are many professionals out there who are keen to learn from other professionals. At my local chapter, “If you get it, share it!” is the core mantra. I regularly invite local successful professionals who are ready to share their learnings. Provide short free online training. It’s a win-win situation for all, for attendees as well as the presenter.
- Talk about weather and bring some humor. Why so serious all the time?
If you are already maintaining a community, try these tips and let me know if they work.