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Archive for July, 2011

Giving Up Control

Written by Richard Millington on . Posted in Community, Community Management

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Sage advice from the Wall Street Journal:

Part of giving up control is also giving visitors the freedom to complain and criticize the brand, or to wax lyrical about a competitor, to their heart’s content.”

This isn’t really giving up control. It’s pretending to give up control while tightly holding the reigns to stop things going wrong.

Giving up control is giving people control over the community. Real, proper, control. Like giving some members the power to delete and moderate comments. Offering the power to open and close forums. The power to physically alter and adjust aspects of the community as they see fit.

The danger, of course, when giving members this level of control is they might use it to destroy the community. This rarely happens. Usually, it’s only when you give members the power to really screw things up that they take responsibility for making it successful.

Richard Millington is the founder of FeverBee Limited, an online community consultancy, and The Pillar Summit , an exclusive course in Professional Community Management. Richard’s clients have included the United Nations, The Global Fund, Novartis, AMD, BAE Systems and several youth & entertainment brands. Richard is also the the author of the Online Community Manifesto. 
Feverbee logo

Avectra, the leader in web based membership management software, is proud to partner with FeverBee Limited to help organizations around the world understand best practices for creating thriving online communities and build invaluable communities of their own.  For more information on MemberFuse, Avectra’s private online community platform, and Avectra Social CRM for Associations, click here.

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The Biggest Benefit Of Building An Online Community

Written by Richard Millington on . Posted in Community, Community Management

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You can’t cheat. That’s a bigger benefit than you realize.

You can’t pay people to participate in your community. You can’t spam people until they participate. You can’t offer short-term rewards and expect to have a thriving community in a year’s time.

To have a truly successful community, you have to go through the steps it takes to be successful.

You need to listen to members and respond to their wants. You have to give your members influence and ownership over the community. You need to do interesting things to retain their interest. You have to care about their complaints. You have to have staff committed to satisfying members.

When we talk about the benefits of an online community, we spend too long on advocates, loyalty, feedback, cost-effective marketing and money. The biggest benefit of building an online community is simple.

Building a successful online community will force you to be a better company.

Richard Millington is the founder of FeverBee Limited, an online community consultancy, and The Pillar Summit , an exclusive course in Professional Community Management. Richard’s clients have included the United Nations, The Global Fund, Novartis, AMD, BAE Systems and several youth & entertainment brands. Richard is also the the author of the Online Community Manifesto. 
Feverbee logo

Avectra, the leader in web based membership management software, is proud to partner with FeverBee Limited to help organizations around the world understand best practices for creating thriving online communities and build invaluable communities of their own.  For more information on MemberFuse, Avectra’s private online community platform, and Avectra Social CRM for Associations, click here.

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Convert More Co-Owners

Written by Richard Millington on . Posted in Community, Community Management

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Nearly every question is an opportunity to create a new owner.

If you ask your community manager to host a weekly discussion on a topic, the best response s/he can give is: “great idea, what do you need from me to make it happen?”.

Your question was a contribution. The community manager turned your contribution into something you own. Now your ego is invested in the success of both the weekly discussion and the community as a whole. You’re a co-owner. You’re going to work hard to turn your idea into reality. Your ego is invested in your idea.

Nearly every question, comment and complaint is an opportunity for you, as community manager, to create a new co-owner.

If someone points out a problem, do they want to help fix it? If someone points out something good, do they want to make it better? If someone is passionate about a topic, do they want to have their own forum/ask-an-expert area on the website?

If you want more activity, it’s not a bad strategy to cultivate more co-owners.


Richard Millington is the founder of FeverBee Limited, an online community consultancy, and The Pillar Summit , an exclusive course in Professional Community Management. Richard’s clients have included the United Nations, The Global Fund, Novartis, AMD, BAE Systems and several youth & entertainment brands. Richard is also the the author of the Online Community Manifesto. 
Feverbee logo

Avectra, the leader in web based membership management software, is proud to partner with FeverBee Limited to help organizations around the world understand best practices for creating thriving online communities and build invaluable communities of their own.  For more information on MemberFuse, Avectra’s private online community platform, and Avectra Social CRM for Associations, click here.

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Ask For Predictions

Written by Richard Millington on . Posted in Community, Community Management

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Ask your members to make predictions about the future. This might be predictions about the industry, predictions about the community or predictions about themselves.

Set a deadline for the not too distant future, no longer than 3 months.

3 months later, compare the answers and keep score of who was right.

It’s fun and simple content to keep members engaged and giving members a reason to come back. You can do this every few months, even keep score.

Richard Millington is the founder of FeverBee Limited, an online community consultancy, and The Pillar Summit , an exclusive course in Professional Community Management. Richard’s clients have included the United Nations, The Global Fund, Novartis, AMD, BAE Systems and several youth & entertainment brands. Richard is also the the author of the Online Community Manifesto. 
Feverbee logo

Avectra, the leader in web based membership management software, is proud to partner with FeverBee Limited to help organizations around the world understand best practices for creating thriving online communities and build invaluable communities of their own.  For more information on MemberFuse, Avectra’s private online community platform, and Avectra Social CRM for Associations, click here.

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