The Power Of Community Marketing: Building Brand Communities That Thrive

We can bet that at least once, you’ve sought help from online communities for a software issue you’ve encountered, or asked questions about a tool you had no idea how to use. And you likely received the answers you were looking for — thanks to insightful responses from fellow members.

A community can be anything from Facebook groups, to subreddits, to forums on tech how-tos and demos. It is also a great way for brands, experts, employees, end consumers, and people within a similar space to find common ground.

Generally speaking, the right community enables you to:

  • Network and engage with other marketers
  • Build brand awareness
  • Learn tricks of the trade
  • Rub elbows with industry leaders
  • Foster meaningful relationships
  • Be updated with industry news and trends

But product experience isn’t the only thing shaped by communities; there’s a lot more to it than just answering questions. Communities are all about connections, knowledge, and even brand awareness.

Creating Opportunities for Meaningful Connections

As social media users grow in number and platforms try to keep up with the speed with which ideas are being exchanged, authenticity and safe spaces have become an important part of the online experience. This has pushed most people to look for other communities where they can find more value and form more meaningful connections.

Online community platforms are designed to connect people with strong common interests, enabling them to have focused discussions on the things that matter to them most. In fact, 36% of users say that online communities are better avenues for meaningful conversations as compared to social media. Entry to forums is also often better controlled, allowing for more respectful and insightful discussions.

As online communities flourish, groups become tightly-bound as ever. With knowledge and authenticity at the top of people’s minds, how can brands build a community and effectively build a brand at the same time?

Building A Brand Community

A study from the Global Web Index revealed that 4 in 5 users are receptive to the presence of brands in forums, mainly due to the fact that brands help users foster authentic relationships that they don’t normally get elsewhere online. Brands can leverage that intention to make customers feel like they truly belong to a real community, rather than feel lost amongst millions of brand followers on a social media platform.

Furthermore, the creation of niche interest groups is proof of how these relationships are at the core of online communities. Marketers find value in engaging with niche interest groups, or “micro-tribes,” compared to the mass market. Consumers are at an advantage, too — 75% of them find value from interacting with other customers within a brand community. These consumer groups are more likely to rally around a brand’s advocacy, support a common cause, and show brand loyalty, depending on their specific interests or industries.

Content for Your Community

Communities are always on the lookout for brands that understand their language, even more so when these brands take time to spark discussions centered around their needs and interests. By providing customer support, one-on-one information sharing, and engaging members with topics relevant to your brand, you can foster genuine, personalized responses and strengthen the bridge that connects you to your community. 

SaaS Marketing Communities

Here are some noteworthy examples of how SaaS companies have successfully nurtured communities of their own. 

  1. Shopify – eCommerce platform Shopify’s community has since amassed a total of 889,771 members, a number that continues to grow daily. The community is a go-to for subscribers for their questions about the app, payments, shipping, social impact, and subscription APIs.
  2. Airbnb – The multi-billion-dollar company definitely boosted peoples’ passion for travel to new heights. Airbnb’s community has grown exponentially since its inception in 2007, and is now one of the biggest insight and support platforms on the web. The Airbnb host community enables members to connect with other members from different locations, share tips, and even organize social gatherings within a region.
  3. Squadhelp – Squadhelp’s community has been running for 9 years now, with Twitter and their own forum page being their primary platforms for interacting with users. Grant Polachek, head of marketing and branding, says: “User engagement is a primary growth source for our page, and many people will post their domain sales connecting with Squadhelp. This helps drive their own domain but also increases Squadhelp’s visibility throughout the platform.”

Final Thoughts

Your community is one of the most unique things about your company, and is what connects you to your market. It is powerful enough to influence purchasing decisions, shape customer ideals, and fuel your business’s growth. In short, building a thriving community is also a key element to real success.

 

Photography by Edu Lauton via Unsplash.

Privacy Notice

This privacy notice discloses the privacy practices for (www.ascentconf.com). This privacy notice applies solely to information collected by this website. It will notify you of the following:

  • What personally identifiable information is collected from you through the website, how it is used and with whom it may be shared.
  • What choices are available to you regarding the use of your data.
  • The security procedures in place to protect the misuse of your information.
  • How you can correct any inaccuracies in the information.

Information Collection, Use, and Sharing

We are the sole owners of the information collected on this site. We only have access to/collect information that you voluntarily give us via email or other direct contact from you. We will not sell or rent this information to anyone.

We will use your information to respond to you, regarding the reason you contacted us. We will not share your information with any third party outside of our organization, other than as necessary to fulfill your request, e.g. to ship an order.

Unless you ask us not to, we may contact you via email in the future to tell you about specials, new products or services, or changes to this privacy policy.

Your Access to and Control Over Information

You may opt out of any future contacts from us at any time. You can do the following at any time by contacting us via the email address or phone number given on our website:

  • See what data we have about you, if any.
  • Change/correct any data we have about you.
  • Have us delete any data we have about you.
  • Express any concern you have about our use of your data.

Security

We take precautions to protect your information. When you submit sensitive information via the website, your information is protected both online and offline.

Wherever we collect sensitive information (such as credit card data), that information is encrypted and transmitted to us in a secure way. You can verify this by looking for a lock icon in the address bar and looking for “https” at the beginning of the address of the Web page.

While we use encryption to protect sensitive information transmitted online, we also protect your information offline. Only employees who need the information to perform a specific job (for example, billing or customer service) are granted access to personally identifiable information. The computers/servers in which we store personally identifiable information are kept in a secure environment.

If you feel that we are not abiding by this privacy policy, you should contact us immediately via telephone at 202-256-9707 or [email protected].