By Ted McEnroe, Director of Research and Training
June is wedding season, but engagement happens year-round. At least that’s what community managers hope.
For The State of Community Management 2016, we wanted to get a better sense of some of the cultural elements that drive higher engagement in communities – and it turns out one of the best ways to get members involved in your community is to ask them for their opinions of it.
Communities that had formal systems to get member feedback about the community had on average 43% higher active engagement than communities without those systems. (We define active engagement as contributing to, creating or collaborating on content in the community.) More than a third of members in communities with formal feedback systems were actively engaged, versus a quarter of those in “feedback free” communities.
Not every community has the available resources for formal surveys and systems – but even informal systems to encourage feedback correlated with higher engagement. If you think about it, it’s not that surprising. Feedback systems effectively encourage engagement by making the community operations a two-way street and giving members a shared interest in the community’s success.
Of course, collecting feedback is only part of the process. Soliciting input and then ignoring it can undermine your efforts by telling potential advocates – those with the interest level to provide feedback – that their thoughts are not valued. Make sure you combine your efforts to create a feedback system with the follow-up to act upon that feedback. That means thinking about the process you might undertake, and getting the stakeholder support to respond to member needs.
Ask for feedback. Act on it. A commonsense approach to building connections with your members. We’d love your feedback on the post, and the report – leave us a comment!
We can’t wait to hear what you think – tag your thoughts with #SOCM2016 to join the conversation!
Are you a member of TheCR Network? Download the research inside the Network here.