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9 Secrets of Successful
Private Online
Communities


WWW.SOCIOUS.COM   Nonprofit: @SociousSuccess For-Profit: @SociousSoftware
9
   Today’s                                 Secrets of Successful
                                           Private Online
 Presenters                                Communities




Paul Schneider              Joshua Paul
Co-Founder & SVP, Socious   Director of Strategy, Socious
9
     A Little             Secrets of Successful
                          Private Online
  Housekeeping            Communities




 Tech Check
 Ask Questions in the Q&A Panel
 We ARE Recording!
 Twitter: @SociousSuccess
9
      Today’s                  Secrets of Successful
                               Private Online
      Agenda                   Communities




1.   Why Private Online Communities Matter
2.   Getting Strategy Right
3.   Community Management
4.   How It All Works
5.   Takeaways
Why Do Successful Private
Online Communities Matter?
9
 Why Do Successful                                       Secrets of Successful
                                                         Private Online
   Private Online                                        Communities
Communities Matter?



Associations reporting a decrease in
membership over the past 5 years
indicate that weak product or service
offerings are a major challenge in
growing their membership*.
*2012 Association Membership Benchmarking Report, Marketing General
9
  Why Do Successful                                        Secrets of Successful
                                                           Private Online
    Private Online                                         Communities
 Communities Matter?


The primary reasons association executives
give as to why members join associations
continues to be:
• networking (22%)
• access to specialized/current info (12%)
• advocacy (12%)*
*2012 Association Membership Benchmarking Report, Marketing General
9
 Why Do Successful                                       Secrets of Successful
                                                         Private Online
   Private Online                                        Communities
Communities Matter?



Associations with more than 5,000
members report their greatest challenge
is attracting and keeping young
members*.
*2012 Association Membership Benchmarking Report, Marketing General
9
 Why Do Successful                                       Secrets of Successful
                                                         Private Online
   Private Online                                        Communities
Communities Matter?



Associations that report an increase in
overall membership growth are
statistically more likely to report having
higher levels of engagement*.
*2012 Association Membership Benchmarking Report, Marketing General
9
 Why Do Successful                                     Secrets of Successful
                                                       Private Online
   Private Online                                      Communities
Communities Matter?



40% of professionals’ online time is
spent engaging in peer-to-peer online
communities, followed by interacting
with friends at 31% and family at 13%*.
*The Social Mind, Society for New Community Research
9
 Why Do Successful                Secrets of Successful
                                  Private Online
   Private Online                 Communities
Communities Matter?

• Low rate of usage and success.
• Average industry usage 14%.
• Most associations view the technology as
  the most important aspect of a successful
  online community-it isn’t.
• Technology is a way to deliver your
  strategy. It is not a strategy itself.
• Online communities CAN be successful.
  We are going to tell you how.
Private Social Networking
Success Starts with a Sound
Online Community Strategy
Should Your Treat Your Private
   Online Community Like a
Technology, Social Media Tool,
     or Member Benefit?
9
     What Makes A               Secrets of Successful
                                Private Online
     Strong Member              Communities
        Benefit?



 Attributes of a strong member benefit:
    1. Exclusive
    2. Accessible
    3. Simple to Grasp
    4. Delivers
    5. Supported

     Secret #1:
Member Benefit Strategy
9
 How To Make Your Private                  Secrets of Successful
                                           Private Online
Online Community A Valuable                Communities
      Member Benefit?


 A Single      Attributes of a strong member benefit:
  Place
                   1. Exclusive           Easy to
 Other            2. Accessible           Participate In
  Members          3. Simple to Grasp
 Helpful          4. Delivers            Important to the
  Information      5. Supported            Organization


        Secret #1:
   Member Benefit Strategy
SECRET #1
   Your Private Member
Community Can Be Your Most
 Valuable Member Benefits
What Are Your
Online Community Goals?
SECRET #2
     Organizational And
Departmental Goals Drive Your
  Online Community Goals
9
 Align Your Private          Secrets of Successful
                             Private Online
Community With Your          Communities
Organizational Goals




Base online community goals on your
executive management team’s goals for
the organization.




  Secret #2:
   Goal Setting
9
     Basing Goals on                                      Secrets of Successful
                                                          Private Online
     Staff Challenges                                     Communities




• What are the top 3 administrative issues you face in your department?
• What are the top 3 member communication issues you face in your
  department?
• What are the top 3 benefits you would like an online community to be able to
  do for your department?
• What is the 1 major issue you hope an online community could help our
  organization with?
• Do you currently use Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter or other social media sites on
  a weekly or regular basis?
• What do you believe is the ONE TOP reason members choose our association?
• Which communication methods do you use to communicate with our members
  currently? Why are you using that method?
• What do you believe is the ONE TOP reason members don’t renew?


      Secret #2:
       Goal Setting
Getting Members to Use Your
     Online Community
9
  Common Mistakes that                   Secrets of Successful
                                         Private Online
      Membership                         Communities
   Organizations Make



     Membership organization must switch from
     thinking of their private online community
     “something extra” for their members to
     viewing it as an all-in-one member-facing
     platform that bring all electronic interactions
     together.



      Secret #3:
Positioning Your Community
9
   Online Communities                  Secrets of Successful
                                       Private Online
   Are at the Center of                Communities
   Member Engagement



  • Makes all communication social
  • Augments staff and creates a constant
    backstop
  • Provides actionable insight about your
    membership
  • Creates growth, buzz, and credit for providing
    value

      Secret #3:
Positioning Your Community
SECRET #3
    Position Your Online
 Community at the Center of
Your Member Communication
          Universe
Community Management
The Importance of Online
  Community Managers
9
  The Role of Online          Secrets of Successful
                              Private Online
 Community Managers           Communities




   The best online community managers
   focus on creating, maintain, and
   improving processes than impact the
   masses rather than addressing
   individual member issues.


    Secret #4:
Community Management
9
  What Does an Online            Secrets of Successful
                                 Private Online
  Community Manager              Communities
         Do?




 •   Content coordination
 •   Outreach
 •   Re-engagement
 •   Measuring & adjusting processes
 •   Look for opportunities to help members
     & for the organization
     Secret #4:
Community Management
9
 What to Look for in an              Secrets of Successful
                                     Private Online
  Online Community                   Communities
      Manager?



   • Understanding of social media,
     collaboration and, online sharing
   • Good project management skills
   • Grasp of your organization’s larger vision
   • Appropriate authority
   • Age does not matter


    Secret #4:
Community Management
SECRET #4
Private Online Communities
Need Community Managers
 That Focus on Processes
Content Planning
9
Why Should You Care       Secrets of Successful
                          Private Online
  About Content?          Communities




  Secret #5:
 Content Planning
9
Why Should Your Care       Secrets of Successful
                           Private Online
  About Content?           Communities




  Secret #5:
 Content Planning
9 Secrets of Successful Private Online Member Communities
9
Key Components of an             Secrets of Successful
                                 Private Online
 Online Community                Communities
    Content Plan



       •   Real Dates
       •   Prioritization
       •   Type of Content
       •   Categories
       •   Content Owner

  Secret #5:
 Content Planning
SECRET #5
   The Engagement in Your
 Private Online Community is
Directly Tied to the Frequency
      of Quality Content
Measuring Success
9
   What Can You                        Secrets of Successful
                                       Private Online
    Measure?                           Communities




                    Visit          Event registration
                    Page view      Profile
                    Login          Time in community
                    Registration   Time on page
                    Post           Entry page
                    Comment        Exit page
                    Click path     Purchases



  Secret #6:
Measuring Success
9
     It is Important to              Secrets of Successful
                                     Private Online
     Measure the Right               Communities
            Things



•    Find out why things are happening
•    See if what you are doing is working
•    Prevent rework and going down the wrong path
•    Fix leaks in your member or customer
     engagement flow



      Secret #6:
    Measuring Success
9
Start With These Key               Secrets of Successful
                                   Private Online
 Online Community                  Communities
       Ratios



•   Visit to New Registration Ratio
•   Visit to Login Ratio
•   Login to Post & Comment Ratio
•   Post to Comment Ratio
•   Login to Action Ratio
•   Members to Completed Profile Ratio


    Secret #6:
Measuring Success
SECRET #6
Measure the Right Things and
  Make Adjustments Often
How It All Works
13 Key Online Community
  Features in 6 Minutes
Creating Value: Discussions
Creating Value: File, Video, Audio, Etc.
Creating Value: Expert Blogs
Creating Value: Finding People and Info
Creating Value: Communities
Creating Value: Content Management
Keep Members Engaged: Email Engine
Keep Members Engaged: Email Alerts
Keep Members Engaged: Integrated Listserv
Keeping members Engaged: Surveys & Polls
Keeping Members Engaged: Gamification
Keep Members Engaged: Engagement Analytics
Keep Members Engaged: Mobile App
SECRET #7
Make Sure You Have Enough of
  2 Kinds of Features in Your
  Online Community – Those
That Create Value & Those That
   Keep Members Engaged
What You Need to Know About
Implementing a Private Online
    Community Platform
9
      What to Expect                            Secrets of Successful
                                                Private Online
  During Implementation                         Communities




1. Initial design session.     6. Mid Review of Site.
2. Initial Site Build / Data   7. Update Conversion / Site.
   Gathering.                  8. Repeat steps 7 and 8 as
3. Integrate gathered data        needed until client feels site is
   into site.                     in a finalized state.
4. Initial Review of Site.     9. Prepare for Launch based on
5. Data Conversion.               document prepared in step 6.
                               10.Launch site.



      Secret #8:
     Implementation
9
 Who Needs to Be            Secrets of Successful
                            Private Online
Involved from Your          Communities
  Organization?



    •   Project Lead
    •   Functional Area Leads
    •   Technical Leads
    •   Domain Contact
    •   Testers

 Secret #8:
Implementation
SECRET #8
 To Avoid Online Community
Implementation Delays, Share
  Your Vision, Make Time to
  Make Decisions, and Know
          Your Data
9
       You Have Many                                 Secrets of Successful
                                                     Private Online
     Integration Options                             Communities




                                                 Socious as Stand-Alone
                   Socious


                                                 Socious Linked to Client
                                                 Database and CMS
Client Systems               Socious


                                                 Socious Events Linked to
                                                 Client Database
      Client Systems                   Socious

        Secret #9:
          Integration
SECRET #9
       An All-In-One Online
Community Platform Helps You
Fill In The Gaps In Your Member
            Experience
9
    Strategy                     Secrets of Successful
                                 Private Online
   Takeaways                     Communities




Your Private Member Community Can Be
Your Most Valuable Member Benefit

Organizational And Departmental Goals Drive
Your Online Community Goals

Place Your Online Community at the Center
of Your Member Communication Universe
9
   Community                      Secrets of Successful
                                  Private Online
  Management                      Communities
   Takeaways


Private Online Communities Need
Community Managers

Community Engagement is Directly Tied to
the Frequency of Quality Content

Measure the Right Things
9
 How It All Works                 Secrets of Successful
                                  Private Online
   Takeaways                      Communities




There are Two Kinds of Features in Your
Online Community – Those That Create
Value & Those That Keep Members Engaged

Implementation: Share Your Vision, Make
Time to Make Decisions, and Know Your Data

Use Your Online Community Software to Fill
In The Gaps In Your Member Experience
9
 Special Offer for                       Secrets of Successful
                                         Private Online
Webinar Participants                     Communities




   Free Online Community Consultation
   Are you researching or planning a new private online
   member community?

   •   Get questions answered
   •   Evaluate your goals
   •   Learn about social software features
   •   Understand the implementation process

   Sign-Up at SOCIOUS.COM/CONSULTATION

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9 Secrets of Successful Private Online Member Communities

  • 1. 9 Secrets of Successful Private Online Communities WWW.SOCIOUS.COM Nonprofit: @SociousSuccess For-Profit: @SociousSoftware
  • 2. 9 Today’s Secrets of Successful Private Online Presenters Communities Paul Schneider Joshua Paul Co-Founder & SVP, Socious Director of Strategy, Socious
  • 3. 9 A Little Secrets of Successful Private Online Housekeeping Communities  Tech Check  Ask Questions in the Q&A Panel  We ARE Recording!  Twitter: @SociousSuccess
  • 4. 9 Today’s Secrets of Successful Private Online Agenda Communities 1. Why Private Online Communities Matter 2. Getting Strategy Right 3. Community Management 4. How It All Works 5. Takeaways
  • 5. Why Do Successful Private Online Communities Matter?
  • 6. 9 Why Do Successful Secrets of Successful Private Online Private Online Communities Communities Matter? Associations reporting a decrease in membership over the past 5 years indicate that weak product or service offerings are a major challenge in growing their membership*. *2012 Association Membership Benchmarking Report, Marketing General
  • 7. 9 Why Do Successful Secrets of Successful Private Online Private Online Communities Communities Matter? The primary reasons association executives give as to why members join associations continues to be: • networking (22%) • access to specialized/current info (12%) • advocacy (12%)* *2012 Association Membership Benchmarking Report, Marketing General
  • 8. 9 Why Do Successful Secrets of Successful Private Online Private Online Communities Communities Matter? Associations with more than 5,000 members report their greatest challenge is attracting and keeping young members*. *2012 Association Membership Benchmarking Report, Marketing General
  • 9. 9 Why Do Successful Secrets of Successful Private Online Private Online Communities Communities Matter? Associations that report an increase in overall membership growth are statistically more likely to report having higher levels of engagement*. *2012 Association Membership Benchmarking Report, Marketing General
  • 10. 9 Why Do Successful Secrets of Successful Private Online Private Online Communities Communities Matter? 40% of professionals’ online time is spent engaging in peer-to-peer online communities, followed by interacting with friends at 31% and family at 13%*. *The Social Mind, Society for New Community Research
  • 11. 9 Why Do Successful Secrets of Successful Private Online Private Online Communities Communities Matter? • Low rate of usage and success. • Average industry usage 14%. • Most associations view the technology as the most important aspect of a successful online community-it isn’t. • Technology is a way to deliver your strategy. It is not a strategy itself. • Online communities CAN be successful. We are going to tell you how.
  • 12. Private Social Networking Success Starts with a Sound Online Community Strategy
  • 13. Should Your Treat Your Private Online Community Like a Technology, Social Media Tool, or Member Benefit?
  • 14. 9 What Makes A Secrets of Successful Private Online Strong Member Communities Benefit? Attributes of a strong member benefit: 1. Exclusive 2. Accessible 3. Simple to Grasp 4. Delivers 5. Supported Secret #1: Member Benefit Strategy
  • 15. 9 How To Make Your Private Secrets of Successful Private Online Online Community A Valuable Communities Member Benefit?  A Single Attributes of a strong member benefit: Place 1. Exclusive  Easy to  Other 2. Accessible Participate In Members 3. Simple to Grasp  Helpful 4. Delivers  Important to the Information 5. Supported Organization Secret #1: Member Benefit Strategy
  • 16. SECRET #1 Your Private Member Community Can Be Your Most Valuable Member Benefits
  • 17. What Are Your Online Community Goals?
  • 18. SECRET #2 Organizational And Departmental Goals Drive Your Online Community Goals
  • 19. 9 Align Your Private Secrets of Successful Private Online Community With Your Communities Organizational Goals Base online community goals on your executive management team’s goals for the organization. Secret #2: Goal Setting
  • 20. 9 Basing Goals on Secrets of Successful Private Online Staff Challenges Communities • What are the top 3 administrative issues you face in your department? • What are the top 3 member communication issues you face in your department? • What are the top 3 benefits you would like an online community to be able to do for your department? • What is the 1 major issue you hope an online community could help our organization with? • Do you currently use Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter or other social media sites on a weekly or regular basis? • What do you believe is the ONE TOP reason members choose our association? • Which communication methods do you use to communicate with our members currently? Why are you using that method? • What do you believe is the ONE TOP reason members don’t renew? Secret #2: Goal Setting
  • 21. Getting Members to Use Your Online Community
  • 22. 9 Common Mistakes that Secrets of Successful Private Online Membership Communities Organizations Make Membership organization must switch from thinking of their private online community “something extra” for their members to viewing it as an all-in-one member-facing platform that bring all electronic interactions together. Secret #3: Positioning Your Community
  • 23. 9 Online Communities Secrets of Successful Private Online Are at the Center of Communities Member Engagement • Makes all communication social • Augments staff and creates a constant backstop • Provides actionable insight about your membership • Creates growth, buzz, and credit for providing value Secret #3: Positioning Your Community
  • 24. SECRET #3 Position Your Online Community at the Center of Your Member Communication Universe
  • 26. The Importance of Online Community Managers
  • 27. 9 The Role of Online Secrets of Successful Private Online Community Managers Communities The best online community managers focus on creating, maintain, and improving processes than impact the masses rather than addressing individual member issues. Secret #4: Community Management
  • 28. 9 What Does an Online Secrets of Successful Private Online Community Manager Communities Do? • Content coordination • Outreach • Re-engagement • Measuring & adjusting processes • Look for opportunities to help members & for the organization Secret #4: Community Management
  • 29. 9 What to Look for in an Secrets of Successful Private Online Online Community Communities Manager? • Understanding of social media, collaboration and, online sharing • Good project management skills • Grasp of your organization’s larger vision • Appropriate authority • Age does not matter Secret #4: Community Management
  • 30. SECRET #4 Private Online Communities Need Community Managers That Focus on Processes
  • 32. 9 Why Should You Care Secrets of Successful Private Online About Content? Communities Secret #5: Content Planning
  • 33. 9 Why Should Your Care Secrets of Successful Private Online About Content? Communities Secret #5: Content Planning
  • 35. 9 Key Components of an Secrets of Successful Private Online Online Community Communities Content Plan • Real Dates • Prioritization • Type of Content • Categories • Content Owner Secret #5: Content Planning
  • 36. SECRET #5 The Engagement in Your Private Online Community is Directly Tied to the Frequency of Quality Content
  • 38. 9 What Can You Secrets of Successful Private Online Measure? Communities Visit Event registration Page view Profile Login Time in community Registration Time on page Post Entry page Comment Exit page Click path Purchases Secret #6: Measuring Success
  • 39. 9 It is Important to Secrets of Successful Private Online Measure the Right Communities Things • Find out why things are happening • See if what you are doing is working • Prevent rework and going down the wrong path • Fix leaks in your member or customer engagement flow Secret #6: Measuring Success
  • 40. 9 Start With These Key Secrets of Successful Private Online Online Community Communities Ratios • Visit to New Registration Ratio • Visit to Login Ratio • Login to Post & Comment Ratio • Post to Comment Ratio • Login to Action Ratio • Members to Completed Profile Ratio Secret #6: Measuring Success
  • 41. SECRET #6 Measure the Right Things and Make Adjustments Often
  • 42. How It All Works
  • 43. 13 Key Online Community Features in 6 Minutes
  • 45. Creating Value: File, Video, Audio, Etc.
  • 47. Creating Value: Finding People and Info
  • 50. Keep Members Engaged: Email Engine
  • 51. Keep Members Engaged: Email Alerts
  • 52. Keep Members Engaged: Integrated Listserv
  • 53. Keeping members Engaged: Surveys & Polls
  • 54. Keeping Members Engaged: Gamification
  • 55. Keep Members Engaged: Engagement Analytics
  • 56. Keep Members Engaged: Mobile App
  • 57. SECRET #7 Make Sure You Have Enough of 2 Kinds of Features in Your Online Community – Those That Create Value & Those That Keep Members Engaged
  • 58. What You Need to Know About Implementing a Private Online Community Platform
  • 59. 9 What to Expect Secrets of Successful Private Online During Implementation Communities 1. Initial design session. 6. Mid Review of Site. 2. Initial Site Build / Data 7. Update Conversion / Site. Gathering. 8. Repeat steps 7 and 8 as 3. Integrate gathered data needed until client feels site is into site. in a finalized state. 4. Initial Review of Site. 9. Prepare for Launch based on 5. Data Conversion. document prepared in step 6. 10.Launch site. Secret #8: Implementation
  • 60. 9 Who Needs to Be Secrets of Successful Private Online Involved from Your Communities Organization? • Project Lead • Functional Area Leads • Technical Leads • Domain Contact • Testers Secret #8: Implementation
  • 61. SECRET #8 To Avoid Online Community Implementation Delays, Share Your Vision, Make Time to Make Decisions, and Know Your Data
  • 62. 9 You Have Many Secrets of Successful Private Online Integration Options Communities Socious as Stand-Alone Socious Socious Linked to Client Database and CMS Client Systems Socious Socious Events Linked to Client Database Client Systems Socious Secret #9: Integration
  • 63. SECRET #9 An All-In-One Online Community Platform Helps You Fill In The Gaps In Your Member Experience
  • 64. 9 Strategy Secrets of Successful Private Online Takeaways Communities Your Private Member Community Can Be Your Most Valuable Member Benefit Organizational And Departmental Goals Drive Your Online Community Goals Place Your Online Community at the Center of Your Member Communication Universe
  • 65. 9 Community Secrets of Successful Private Online Management Communities Takeaways Private Online Communities Need Community Managers Community Engagement is Directly Tied to the Frequency of Quality Content Measure the Right Things
  • 66. 9 How It All Works Secrets of Successful Private Online Takeaways Communities There are Two Kinds of Features in Your Online Community – Those That Create Value & Those That Keep Members Engaged Implementation: Share Your Vision, Make Time to Make Decisions, and Know Your Data Use Your Online Community Software to Fill In The Gaps In Your Member Experience
  • 67. 9 Special Offer for Secrets of Successful Private Online Webinar Participants Communities Free Online Community Consultation Are you researching or planning a new private online member community? • Get questions answered • Evaluate your goals • Learn about social software features • Understand the implementation process Sign-Up at SOCIOUS.COM/CONSULTATION