No matter how much strategy building and content planning you do there are still going to be lurkers hanging out in your community, not contributing. The big question is: how do I convert those lurkers into engaged community participants? While there are no silver bullets for community engagement, the SOCM 2014 did uncover a number of strategies for increasing engagement and reducing the percentage of lurkers.
For example: we found that community advocacy and leadership programs had one of the most significant positive correlations with community engagement in this research– lurker rates for communities with multi-tiered leadership programs were 54%, compared to the survey average of 63%. Of course developing, launching and maintaining an advocacy program is a serious (though very worthwhile) undertaking.
For a more immediate impact try hosting a regular events series – online or offline. We found communities that host offline events have a lurker rate of 56%, and communities that host regular online events have a lurker rate of 57%. Not only did both types improve on the survey average of 63%, but regular events also boost active participation, increase networking and contribute to an overall feeling of goodwill in the community. You might start small with a regular chat, happy hour, new member meet-and-greet or a program more specifically tailored to your community. It’s not the type of events you pick that matter, as long as you’re picking the types of events that make sense for your community.
Do you currently run regularly scheduled online or offline events? We’d love to hear what works for you!
You can review more findings related to community maturity in the State of Community Management 2014. This post is part of a series highlighting some of the most thought-provoking data from the SOCM 2014 – brought to you via a fun poster – perfect for sharing on Twitter, hanging at your desk, or printing out and waving around your next community strategy meeting.
Want even more community facts? Check out the full SOCM 2014 here:
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