One of the most important web2.0 trend in business for this year has been web- based customer community where like minded people of a product or services gather and discuss about that product or services. Successful customer community is the major reason for business success. Communities should not be commercial, not affiliated with other business and should be an active one.
A Report shows that active customer web community can increase two-third of sales. It is little hard to making loyal and active members for our customer community unless we provide quality of service with good customer support for any kind of business.
Here in this article, I would like to mention some best practices for online customer communities. Hope it would be helpful for business people to get more exposure and sales for their products from customer communities.
1. Make your community more honest:
Customer community should be a honest, trust worthy and with broad ideas. It should give freedom for customers to talk about everything. Allow members to do open conversation even if it is about recommendation of our competitor’s product or services.
2. Community is all about customers not technology:
Create your customer community with user friendly web application and software. Dont make it so hard for members to use. Customer community is not a place of showing your technical skills. So better make it simple and easy to use for every one.
3. Need active management for community:
Making a own community is not that much hard but doing proper moderation & management for community is essential where the life of community exist. Be active in your community moderation, have a look at every conversation and if it is need contribute yourself by answering the query. Because spammers are always supposed to damage your community and brand name.
4. Measure your community success:
It is a vital role on business. We need to measure our customer community success with unique visitors to our community. It is so simple for us to find loyal customer and regular contributors to our business via community forums. You can find the positive change in your business after creating your own business community for business. Make use of Google Analytic tool to find unique and Return visitors statistics for your community.
5. Be social and use social networks:
I would never say making customer communities in your own domain. You can use the social network to make your groups and communities where you can find millions and millions of users. For example you can make customer groups on Facebook, Linkedin, Xing, Google Grops, Yahoo Groups and etc. Where ever may your community exist, active community management is more important.
6. Do not lose your identity, Growth will come :
No communities will get active participants at starting stage. For that, we need to create our own identity by making different customer friendly things on communities. We can announce some give away and coupons for active participants which will pull more participant. Also be on your own way and do not compare your community with some others.
7. Do not let your customers go :
Customer communities have been purposely used for business promotion and of course hardly to increase our sales. Making only business relationship with our valid customers will not give us continuous success. Customers are more than that, we should keep gentle relationship with them. We can share our ideas, suggestion and some needy helps to them. That will never let them go from our business for a long time.
Customers are the king of business. Make them happy by bring them the real, trusty, problem solving, customer community.
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