Isn’t funny the way we often think we have communicated clearly only to find out that is not the case. In romantic comedies it leads to an entertaining movie but in business it leads to confusion, sometimes frustration and possibly lost sales. And so it is with The Community Roundtable. We know community. We know how to listen and moderate and speak community managers and social business professionals language so you would think we would be better at this…turns out we’re human too.
Far too often lately we’ve had conversations with longtime clients and fans who say, “I didn’t know The Community Roundtable did….” And it’s time to fix that. Here are our services and the winding path of how and why we offer them:
The CR Network – our first service offering is a membership based community for community management and social business leaders. When we speak of “members” we are referring to those who have a membership in TheCR Network. In this community we provide programming, connect members with like interests/challenges, act as advisers and listen when a member needs an ear, and introduce members to industry experts in a forum where they don’t just sit passively and listen to the experts they question, but debate and stay in touch with them. We think peer to peer learning and interaction is extremely important to being successful in this emerging space and that is what we hope TheCR Network provides members and our members agree.
Once we had members reaching out to us asking questions, some members had some really big issues going on around community management implementation and adoption in their organizations and reached out for us to help. This is the basis of TheCR Advisory where our leadership team visits companies for a day, two days or more and does some roll up your sleeves, down and dirty work. We can help with executive education & keynotes, planning and strategy, constructing framework and putting goals in place and much more.
As we grew so did interest in community management and many of our members needed to expand their teams but because of the unique nature of this emerging roll, positions seemed to get lost on regular job boards. So we created a community management specific job board where they and others in the industry can post jobs. Because we are well known in the industry and have lots of current and future community managers following what we say in social media it has been a win-win for us, for our members and for our greater community.
But there was more. We could tell many of our members were in different stages of the community management cycle and we wanted to help them understand where they were, how to get to the next step, what best practices were along the way and be able to articulate it well to the powers that be at their organizations. So we came up with The Community Maturity Model. And once that framework had been laid we set out to take stock of what the trends were in the community management and social business space with groundbreaking research.
Ahh…we can rest, now right?! Not yet. Again members and clients were talking to us and they were wondering how they could keep others in their organizations up to date on what’s happening in social business without them becoming members. You see there are many stakeholders for each community in an organization and not all are tasked with actual management or implementation but they do need to understand the dynamics of this new area. Case studies and curated content are a great way to do this and so we launched TheCR Focus, a monthly report subscription service. Each month we share case studies, reports and articles around a critical social business competency.
Great, we have educated the stakeholders, now we can surely take a breath…nope.
As interest in communities grew so did the demand for more experienced community mangers to strategize and make sure what the community was doing was aligned and forwarding the organization’s business strategy. So many community teams were adding people at all levels and many of these new hires had never working in community before or those that had were being promoted to formerly non-existent roles. Our members wanted to know how they could bring these new team members up to speed…and fast. So instead of having them each train their team members individually we developed a community management online training program in partnership with WOMMA (Word of Mouth Marketing Association) and ComBlu. Today we are in the middle of our 3rd and most advanced online training course for community strategists.
What’s next? There is clear demand for more understanding and research and our next big initiative is The Social Executive which will help the market understand the executive journey and how their perspective changes from interest to support to use to urgency. We feel this addresses one of the biggest risks to social business and community programs in the market today – the fact that most executives are not yet ‘all in’.
It has been a long and interesting road these 3 years and we are thrilled to be able to offer a range of services that help organizations succeed from the top down with our advisory services or from the bottom up using our online training courses and the community maturity model to get started. And we want to thank our members of TheCR Network. It all began with them, they have taught us so much, been gracious in sharing and they are the motivation and inspiration behind all the services that have developed because our guiding principal is to help them succeed.
Which services do you use most? Did you know we offered all of these services?