The five cornerstones of a good customer community, and which should be at the heart of your operations, are explained below.
Creating a strong internal support structure
Your first priority should be creating a support structure around the community. This is mainly down to the Internet being quite a murky place to operate in. In short, your organisation will not always attract good comments and customer created content might be tricky to handle. You therefore need a team that’s able to respond to these situations efficiently and who feel supported and appreciated by the organisation.
First, it’s important to draw a clear set of procedures for dealing with customer community related issues. Have a line of commands in place for negative feedback or content within the community, as well as for dealing with community-related problems. If everyone knows how to approach these sorts of problems, they will be able to deal with them more effectively.
Second, you should consider recruiting a team of volunteers to run the community. Perhaps there are people within your organisation who would love to do some blogging or who wouldn’t mind answering customer questions. Having a volunteer for these jobs guarantees you have passionate people involved with the community.
Your customer community must also have a strong accountability system in place, both internally and externally. For things to run smoother, a community manager is definitely worth a...
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...t you. You need to identify the information that could be beneficial to competitors and the information, which is more valuable to the consumer.
Customer communities are an effective way to increase sales, develop better products and services, and provide more value for customers. It’s an important part of comprehensive customer support network and an essential tool for better marketing strategies.
In order to start and utilise a customer community, your organisation must outline its objectives and focus on putting the customer first. You’ll need to establish strong external and internal support structures and make sure you create quality content that adds real value to consumers, instead of being purely for promotional purposes. Above all, use the customer community to engage with your consumers and nurture consumer-led innovation and content creation.
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