Growing a community for your business is pretty much a must if you want to be successful. So, how do you go about building one? It all starts with understanding community-led growth and how to make it work for you.
November 27, 2023
Community-Led Growth is a strategy that really emphasises the power of a strong, supportive community, using their influence and input as your main driving force.
Community-Led Growth can be centered around one or more communities (customers, partners, employees, investors...) who are given a central role in decision-making.
Community members are empowered to provide direct input on product features, marketing campaigns and more. They are also actively engaged in helping to grow the company through word-of-mouth and referrals.
The strategy focuses on the idea that when a company is built around its community, it can generate organic growth and create a more loyal customer base. It can also help to drive better outcomes and results by tapping into the collective knowledge, experience and passion of the community.
The best thing about community-led growth is that it's democratic, participatory and social - it's all about people.
There's a bunch of amazing benefits that come with investing in a community-led growth strategy. Let's dive into it!
People's trust in traditional institutions is going down, and they start to see their purchases as a form of engagement.
Companies have become aware of this. They now are going beyond that, offering the opportunity for individuals to join a community of like-minded people who share common interests.
So it's not just about buying something, it's about being part of something.
It's clear that having a solid community can give any business a huge competitive advantage.
It reduces customer churn, attracts new users, and serves as a powerful defense against potential competitors. The most loyal customers are likely to remain attached to your brand and reject offers from competitors.
In a regular marketing and sales funnel, the process ends when someone buys your product.
But with Community-led Growth, that's just the beginning. Once they've purchased something, you can support them in achieving their goals, and they become passionate promoters of your business.
These fans can even be used to boost the pre- and post-sale processes. People recommending your products can help boost your sales, getting feedback can help you improve, and responding to customer inquiries can help new users get on board.
It's essential to involve your community in product development - it's such an invaluable source of customer insight (about how they act and think)!
Your community can give you great feedback on your product, and help you tailor it to your target audience. Don't underestimate the value of their input - it can make all the difference!
Having a community gives customers a place to share their experiences and get advice from others. They can provide guidance, support and helpful answers to new customers' questions.
You ensure every customer has all the resources to get the most out of your product, even without your help.
Here are a few tips to help you out - they'll make sure your community-led growth strategy is a success!
Starting a community is not as simple as just creating a social media profile or establishing a one-way relationship with customers.
Before jumping into the process, it's essential to consider what would motivate people to join.
You gotta offer something useful or valuable - something that's worth their time.
Think about something that they won't find elsewhere, such as attentive customer service or early access to new features. Exclusive invitations to special events can also be a great way to entice people to join your community.
It's important to remember that in today's world, customers are looking for more than just a transactional relationship with brands. Instead, they want to feel connected and valued.
Creating a community that offers genuine value to its members is essential for building a successful and sustainable brand.
Your customers want to be heard and to be involved, so make sure you give them the right platform to speak up.
It's essentiel to select a channel that your users are already familiar with and that aligns with your goals.
Depending on the type of business you are running, there are many different channels you can use to interact with your community.
Larger companies may have the luxury of expanding onto multiple platforms.This can look like a YouTube channel for guides and tutorials, a podcast to invite inspiring customers, or a Discord to ask questions, give feedback and discuss topics related to your products or services.
If you're just starting out, it's better to focus your attention on one main platform before diversifying.
You can use social media such as Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram or message app like Discord or Whatsapp to interact with your customers and build relationships.
Getting your first few members is key. It can be tough to get your community off the ground, so you need to be extra generous with those that join early.
You could give them discounts, bonus features, or other exclusive benefits to get the ball rolling. These incentives can help build a sense of exclusivity and encourage early members to become brand ambassadors, promoting your community to others.
By focusing on the initial members, you can create a strong foundation for your community, setting the stage for future growth.
You gotta keep your members engaged in your community, right? That's why it's up to you to motivate them to get involved and make sure that the conversations are always respectful and high quality.
To make it happen, you gotta create an open and welcoming culture, provide clear steps to get involved, and make sure your platform has features that make contributing easier.
Don't wait for your members to initiate conversations or events. Be proactive in organizing both virtual (webinars, Q&A sessions...) and physical events (product launches, networking, etc.).
This will help foster a sense of community and give members a reason to stay engaged.
Remember that building and sustaining a community takes effort, so don't hesitate to invest time and resources into encouraging participation and keeping your members involved.
Building a community isn't just about creating a space where people can hang out - it's also about making sure that they stay engaged and active.
To achieve this, it's important to show appreciation and gratitude towards community members.
You can start by offering more important roles to the most active users, such as moderators or event organizers.
Additionally, it's crucial to showcase the content they create and offer them visibility.
Another way to encourage engagement is by giving them exclusive access to test new product updates before they are released to the public.
By showing your appreciation and recognizing their contributions, you'll encourage members to continue engaging with your community and foster a positive and productive relationship.
Product-led growth (PLG) and community-led growth (CLG) are two different approaches to business growth:
Product-led growth is a strategy where the company's primary focus is on creating a product that attracts and retains customers through its inherent value and ease of use. In a PLG strategy, the product is designed to be self-serve, so users can onboard and start using the product without the need for a sales or customer success team. This approach aims to make the product experience so good that users will naturally spread the word and refer others, leading to organic growth.
Community-led growth is a strategy where the company builds a community of users or customers around its product or service. The community serves as a hub for users to connect with each other, share ideas, and offer support. By creating a sense of belonging and providing value beyond the product, CLG aims to build brand loyalty and advocacy. The community can also act as a source of feedback and ideas, driving product innovation and customer satisfaction.
In a nutshell, PLG focuses on the product, while CLG focuses on building a community around the product.
However, the two strategies are not mutually exclusive, and many companies use a combination of both to achieve growth.
Choosing the right name for your loyalty program is a critical decision that can impact its success. This is your program's identity we're talking about, the front line of your relationship with customers and the phrase that'll be on everyone's lips. So, let's get it right.