Communities are built on engagement—it’s what makes them vibrant and worth joining. An engagement strategy to drive digital and in-person participation in membership communities is key to creating value that boosts retention and recruitment.
Start with KPIs and goals
Not every organization has a written member engagement strategy. We measure what matters, though. When planning, it’s important to focus on KPIs—and set goals to reach them.
Use your data
Tracking engagement can provide a more holistic view of who your members are, as well as who is likely to renew (or not). And, understanding who may not renew—getting as specific as, for example, first-time members with a profile completion rate under 60%—will hone your organization’s business analytics. Some organizations even develop a single value score for member engagement.
While specifics must be tied to your goals, certain practices are almost universally successful. These include:
- Creating intuitive member experiences that foster participation
- Eliminating barriers to participation, for instance by allowing members to reply or comment without being forced back to your website
- Encouraging social learning through increased collaboration and knowledge-building in user groups
- Offering badges or rewards for completed profiles or employing gentle ‘shameification’ to prompt members by comparing their completion rates to others’
- Considering opt-out rather than opt-in features when launching communities
- Automating processes and communications, such as through drip campaigns or autoresponder emails
Creating a strategy to drive engagement is the first step toward creating a richer community experience.
Check out our guide to learn how to segment member personas for better engagement.