Community building for business: What, Why, and How?
The future of business is in creating communities. In the era of the platform economy, it is essential for success to create a virtual or offline platform of adherents of the brand and its products. Currently, successful brands tend to make their marketing more human by building a community of fans. The main component of any business community building is the creation of the values. In other words, a community is formed around the common values a business product or service creates in people’s lives.
What is the business community?
To put it simply, community is gathered around a group of people, sharing common values or interests in a particular sphere. The business community is formed around an organization and consists of employees, partners, customers and potential clients, who share the organization’s vision.
Why community building is important for the business?
Community building is a powerful tool to increase business visibility and create a platform for interactions between businesses and clients and between clients themselves. The community reinforces a feeling of belonging to a group and connects people, who share a common interest. Once your client is part of your business community, you can easily interact with him and foster close ties. This helps to increase loyalty to your business, therefore, build a sustainable business.
There are three basic ways you can foster community building around your business.
1. Creation of the fan groups in social media
The cheapest way to create a community is to launch a group of a fan page on social media. It is important to fulfill the online community not only with promotional materials but also with the information, which is useful and interesting for your followers.
2. Subscription or membership-based community
It offers a feeling of belonging to the community and networking opportunities in a close group of people, who shares the same values.
3. Regular events for your members
(Be)annual forums, monthly meetings can help to maintain the community engaged and be an additional tool to increase the visibility of your organization, be a platform for a presentation of the new products, and gain customer loyalty. Annual Conference of Apple can be a good example for inspiration for entrepreneurs how the company uses the regular event to attract attention to the business and its products.