How to Launch an Awesome Software or Technology User Group


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Featured Speakers: Kathleen McCasland of user group management company, YCC, and Joshua Paul of Socious, leading provider of user group management software.

In this recorded webinar, learn why user groups are important to both customers and companies, important user group management processes and roles, and how to turn your user group into an active user community.

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How to Launch an Awesome Software or Technology User Group

  1. 1. HOW TO CREATE AN AWESOME USER GROUP Title Page – Josh is designing this
  2. 2. Featured Speakers Joshua Paul Socious, Director of Strategy @SociousSoftware Kathleen McCasland YCC, Founder and CEO
  3. 3. Housekeeping  Tech Check  Ask Questions in the Q&A Panel  We ARE Recording!  Twitter Hashtag: @SociousSoftware
  4. 4. Today’s Discussion • Why are user groups important? • Key roles and processes • How to create a thriving user group
  5. 5. Why Active User Groups are Important @SociousSoftware
  6. 6. Members • Sense of community • Source for industry/professional news • Source to ask questions and get them answered • Source for continuing education • Assists in professional advancement @SociousSoftware
  7. 7. Companies • Great marketing channel • Great way to learn what is important to their customers • Great way to identify the leaders in the community • Great way to instill product loyalty @SociousSoftware
  8. 8. User Group Roles, Tools, and Processes @SociousSoftware
  9. 9. User Group Management Models • • • • Total volunteer management Company initiated, funded, and managed Association management company Executive Director hired by board and responsible for staff, equipment, office, etc. @SociousSoftware
  10. 10. Annual Review • • • • • • • Mission statement Vision statement Bylaws Strategic goals Budget/finances Website Future conference locations @SociousSoftware
  11. 11. Tools • • • • • • • • Association Management System Event Management System Robust website Webinar platform Survey and polling Accounting/finance tool Document sharing Mobile App @SociousSoftware
  12. 12. Reliable Sources of Information • American Society of Association Executives (ASAE) • Association Management Companies Institute (AMCI) • Meeting Professionals Institute (MPI) • Professional Convention Management Association (PCMA) • LinkedIn Groups • IMEX @SociousSoftware
  13. 13. Processes • • • • • • • • • Board management, policies, elections Technology New member onboarding Website community management Continuing education Conference planning SIG/Committee charters Finance Sponsors, partners, and exhibitors @SociousSoftware
  14. 14. Components of a Thriving User Community @SociousSoftware
  15. 15. Components of a Thriving User Community LEADERSHIP A leader is best when people barely know he exists, when his work is done, his aim fulfilled, they will say: we did it ourselves.- Lao Tzu • Staff • Board • Volunteers @SociousSoftware
  16. 16. Components of a Thriving User Community • • • • VOLUNTEERISM Identify a volunteer leader Listen to your volunteers Don’t do everything in the office just because it is easier Develop a leadership program @SociousSoftware
  17. 17. Components of a Thriving User Community • • • • • • • • ROBUST WEBSITE Active forums or discussion groups Easy navigation Updating news on front page Member profiles Members only section/pages Twitter feed Blog Aggregator Members in the news @SociousSoftware
  18. 18. Components of a Thriving User Community SOCIAL MEDIA • • • • • • Twitter Blogs Facebook LinkedIn YouTube Pinterest @SociousSoftware
  19. 19. Components of a Thriving User Community Listen @SociousSoftware
  20. 20. Components of a Thriving User Community RISK TAKING • Responsibility to members • Responsibility includes suggesting new ideas • Be ready for some failures and accept them @SociousSoftware
  21. 21. Components of a Thriving User Community • • • • FUN FACTOR Start with the Board Insert fun in email blasts Make an effort to include fun at your events Remember, the fun can begin with you @SociousSoftware
  22. 22. Components of a Thriving User Community • • • • GIVING BACK Don’t get too caught up in banking the money Help members in need Community service Encourage members to share professional knowledge @SociousSoftware
  23. 23. Questions Kathleen McCasland Joshua Paul @Joshua_D_Paul @SociousSoftware