How to Attract New Online Community Members - dummies

How to Attract New Online Community Members

By Deborah Ng

Members of online communities are transient. Many stick around only until they achieve a certain goal. Others lose interest and find new hangouts. Thus, without a regular influx of new members, communities die out.

Going through all the trouble of putting up a place for folks to interact only to let it turn into a virtual ghost town seems like a waste. Encouraging new membership is one of the key duties of a community manager.

A good manager really rocks the people skills and is friendly, inviting, and welcoming. A good manager is also active in many other online communities and networks, in hopes of driving traffic and raising awareness, and uses a variety of methods to keep folks coming in:

  • Participates in social networking: Community managers often share news and events on social networks, such as Twitter and Facebook.

  • Cross-promotes with other communities: Many community managers join forces for contests and discussion among like-minded communities.

  • Offers perks and discounts: New members are drawn to coupons, discount codes, freebies, and other perks.

  • Attends conferences and meet-ups: Community managers often attend conferences and meet-ups among same-interest groups in order to raise awareness and bring in new members.