What is your first thought when you see the phrase “Online-community”?
Is your own website on that list?
It should! And that’s why:
Let’s break it down and understand how we can use that knowledge to help our audience.
What is a community?
A community is a group of people with commonality such as norms, religion, values, customs, identity or opinions.
When you think about it a community can be broad and everlasting or it can be small and short lived, and in this modern fast world we can see more of the latter.
We can see these Micro-communities pop around an article, blog or even a photo. A group of total strangers find a commonality that they can share and discos but, as fast as they appear, they vanish.
What are Micro-communities?
I studied Micro-communities for a while and I noticed that Micro-communities are formed around a broad community but, the Micro-communities consist of both the community members and complete strangers.
Online we form communities around content, and to keep that communities together, content should be renewed frequently to keep the bond, and as you all probably know, that is the most difficult of tasks.
How we use Micro-communities
To reachUGC creating communities the maximum value of your content you are probably using engagement tools such as a commenting system, and that is where Micro-communities are formed! you can think of your website as the broad and everlasting community but, with each new content published you create, unknowingly, a Micro-communities, and as I said before, probably not all members in that Micro-communities are part of the website community and that’s how UGC creates organic traffic.
Users Generated Content is the full of every online community, the website and content are the car but, UGC is the fuel and no online community can run without it.
Another hidden attribute of Micro-communities is expanding the content lifetime and relevance, when you encourage users engagement you create a magnet for return traffic, show me one person who will write a comment and NOT come back to check what has been said by other members.
Micro-community as content compasses
The most valuable attribute of UGC is the content compass, UGC rate your content relevance and accuracy it’s the best spell check in the world even a simple thumbs up can keep you inline and true to your audience, keep in mind to encourage you audience to engage, don’t be shy to ask for the audience to write you back what they think.
Use but don’t abuse, it’s important to use the power of UGC and community to grow and nurture the trust and loyalty with you and your content but, don’t ever use it to manipulate and force revenue, your community members won’t appreciate it and the outcome will probably be the loss of traffic and revenue, always remember, community are strong together but a key person from within can easily break it.
And lastly, my favorite add value of UGC is:
Micro-community as Content Generator
The G in UGC is generated so use it to generate!
Let the community fully express itself by saying their mind in your domain, let them fill the space and broaden the trust.
Once you understand your community, creating content becomes second nature, with the love and embrace of each Micro-communities the content follows.