Richard Millington

Buzzing Communities

Сообщить о появлении
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    Svyatoslav Yushinцитирует2 года назад
    You also want to collect anecdotal data on what types of contributions members who became regulars in the community made compared with those who left. What was the difference? Were there particular discussions that those who became regulars participated in at each phase compared with those who didn’t become members? Can you place these contributions into categories? For instance, “self-disclosure discussions,” “status-jockeying discussions,” and “conveying information discussions.”
    You can guide newcomers into participating in the types of discussions that are likely to keep them engaged in the community. In addition, was there anything else that regulars did which those that left didn’t? Did they complete their profile? Upload a picture of themselves? Submit a story? Have a discussion with a community manager?
    Svyatoslav Yushinцитирует2 года назад
    You can see that the number of members that leave after three months is relatively low compared to the first three months. You might plan a series of activities to keep a newcomer engaged for the first three months.
    Let’s use another example. Imagine that you notice members are vanishing after the third week. You might plan a ritual or some sort of graduation for members every third week of the month. You might write a post that mentions members by name, has a few details about them, and gives them access to specific forums within the community platform.
    Svyatoslav Yushinцитирует2 года назад
    Brett Taylor, founder of Friendfeed and former CTO of Facebook, noted that his data showed that if members befriended five individuals on the platform, they would likely become permanent members of the community. This is true of most online communities (five is not necessarily the number but a number exists for your community).
    Svyatoslav Yushinцитирует2 года назад
    I’ve outlined the five stages of conversion on the following page. It begins with the first visit, then registration, participation, becoming a regular, and volunteering.
    Svyatoslav Yushinцитирует2 года назад
    So don’t count the people who performed the mere act of completing a registration form as members. Only count those who made an active contribution to the community within the past month.
    Svyatoslav Yushinцитирует2 года назад
    How to measure sense of community
    Chavis and others later produced a sense of community index, to measure the sense of a community. It is a survey, which means members need to be invited to participate.
    The index asks people to rate whether they agree with the following statements on a scale of 0 for “not at all” to 3 for “completely”
    Svyatoslav Yushinцитирует2 года назад
    Sense of community is a concept with great history. It was first properly articulated in McMillan and Chavis’s 1986 paper Psychological Sense of Community. McMillan and Chavis summarized a range of literature to produce four key factors inherent in developing a strong sense of community:
    1. Membership. Do members feel a sense of identification with one another?
    2. Influence. Do members feel influenced by the community and influential within the community?
    3. Integration and fulfillment of needs. Are members’ needs being met? Are those needs aligned with the needs of the community?
    4. Shared emotional connection. Do members share an emotional connection with one another?
    It’s important to track your members’ sense of community. A community can have a good level of growth and high levels of engagement but fail to develop relationships between members. This is the case for many customer-service-based communities.
    Svyatoslav Yushinцитирует2 года назад
    Plot this in a table and graph as shown below:

    Activity KPI figures

    In the above graph, you can see the community reached critical mass of activity after about 4.5 months.
    Svyatoslav Yushinцитирует2 года назад
    The activities you undertake at this stage blur the lines between growth, activity, and sense of community. Releasing statements on behalf of the community, for example, achieves all three: it promotes the community, it increases activity from members talking about the issue, and makes members feel a greater sense of community from the influence their community has upon its ecosystem.
    A list of activities at this stage is below:

    The objective at this stage is, counter-intuitively, to hit the plateau, the point where the community has reached its initial maximum potential. Everyone in the sector should know of you, your members are highly active, and there is a deep sense of community among members.
    Svyatoslav Yushinцитирует2 года назад
    This final element, external attention, is common among mature communities. They become the definitive place for those interested in that topic. Mumsnet is the definitive community for parents in the UK. Techcrunch is the definitive community for start-up companies. 4Chan has a thriving online community for online hackers/pranksters.
    Svyatoslav Yushinцитирует2 года назад
    During this phase of the online community lifecycle, the number of tasks you focus upon will broaden and you need to shift your time accordingly. These tasks include:

    The objective of this phase is to continue increasing growth and activity, develop a limited sense of community, and provide the basis for sustainable development of the community.
    Svyatoslav Yushinцитирует2 года назад
    Critical mass of growth is achieved when the total number of newly registered members in the community is double the number of members that have joined through your direct invitations (both one-to-one and to your existing mailing lists/audien
    Svyatoslav Yushinцитирует2 года назад
    Another potential danger at this stage is top-down community planning. Instead of reacting to interests that have risen naturally within the community, those that have clearly gained a high level of participation, the community attempts a top-down approach to try and facilitate multiple groups at once. This approach is not suited to community development.
    Svyatoslav Yushinцитирует2 года назад
    Similarly, once a community becomes too active, it becomes difficult for members to stay abreast of what’s new and popular in the community. It becomes difficult to follow the overall narrative of the community. This is often referred to as ‘information overload’ (Jones et al., 2004).
    A member used to catching up on 10 missed messages feels less motivation to catch up on 50 or 500 messages. It becomes harder to find the messages that will be most relevant.
    Svyatoslav Yushinцитирует2 года назад
    Critical mass is a term from nuclear physics defined as the minimum amount of fissile material to sustain a nuclear chain reaction. This term has become co-opted by social scientists as a tipping point used to describe the moment any social activity becomes self-sustaining.
    For your purposes, critical mass is when the level of growth and activity in the community continues to increase without your direct involvement. This point is numerically defined as when more than 50% of growth and activity is generated by the community (as opposed to the community manager).
    The sole goal of the inception stage is to achieve critical mass by cultivating a small group of highly active members in the community. This group becomes the foundation upon which to build the community. Unless a small, active, group is established it is impossible to develop a successful long-term community.
    Svyatoslav Yushinцитирует2 года назад
    If organizations don’t acknowledge the community lifecycle, they have no way of establishing realistic expectations for their community strategy. Many online communities are killed before they have had the opportunity to be a success. If you try to take a shortcut, you will focus on the wrong metrics and not properly develop the community for the long-term.
    Svyatoslav Yushinцитирует2 года назад
    The biggest mistake made by organizations is ignoring this fixed path. Too many organizations try to jump ahead several stages along the lifecycle without realizing the negative consequences of doing so. For example, they see a mature community such as Patient’s Like Me (healthcare) or Mumsnet (parenting) and decide they need to be really big to succeed. What they ignore is the path they took to be successful. They confuse the end result with the process. The process is to start small and grow gradually. In the early stages you need to focus on very specific things.
    Svyatoslav Yushinцитирует2 года назад
    What is the community lifecycle?
    Iriberri and Leroy (2009) did not invent the community lifecycle, but they were the first to review thousands of academic articles on community development and lay out a clear set of stages and success factors.
    A variety of practitioners (including my company) have refined the process to further develop communities. The lifecycle forms the basis for community development and shows what you should be working towards at any particular time.
    There are four stages to the community lifecycle:
    Svyatoslav Yushinцитирует2 года назад
    Developing a community strategy
    A strategy is comprised of the following five steps:
    1. Data collection. The first step is to collect data about the audience and the current progress and health of the community. This includes both quantitative and qualitative data. Collecting this data is a time-consuming but important task. It’s the single, most reliable way to make sure you’re doing the right thing. Anything else is guessing.
    2. Analyze data.Once you’ve collected data, you need to analyze how the community is progressing through the prisms of growth, activity, and sense of community. You need to identify the health of the community and its ROI. This doesn’t take long.
    3. Establish the goals. Based upon where the community is now, you can use theory to determine where the community needs to go next. You set goals for each of the other elements within the community management framework and targets they can be measured against.
    4. Create an action plan. Now you have the goals, you need to develop an action plan to get there. This should be broken down into a very specific three-month calendar (week by week), and a broad 12-month plan (month by month). Highlight what needs to be done at the beginning of each week by creating a day-by-day plan.
    5. Track progress and ensure accountability.Finally, you need to track progress towards these goals and ensure none of the goals are missed. You might also identify any obstacles that prevent these goals from being realized.
    Камиль Зариповцитирует2 года назад
    Generally speaking, the more mature the community, the more time you spend on macro-level activities that affect as many members as possible.
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