Communities are much more about power than individual talent, and this is one of the reasons why people often belong to one or more communities with the intention of learning from each other. Digital communities allow individuals to increase their opportunities for personal and professional improvement on the web, with a range of ideas and knowledge from others that individually we would not find.
Just as we find communities in the real world, we can find them in the digital world, and these communities can help consumers understand products and services and their role in the daily lives of individuals.
According to some studies, 53% of brands say that social media is the main driver of relationship building and brand engagement, twice as much as email and four times as much as traditional websites. This implies a likely familiarity and active engagement with the concept of social communities.
Digital communities create opportunities for brands to connect with their audiences in a natural and personal way. Digital communities make it easier to measure customer feedback and satisfaction levels. Through targeted community interactions, enthusiasm can be generated, products launched or events announced, without all the traditional hassles.
An internal community increases productivity by allowing employees to locate information and connect directly with people who can help them with work-related issues. Duplication of effort can be reduced through a strong internal community, as well as facilitating the exchange of information. Users of this community use collaboration features such as chat room, blog, online collaboration, file storage and integration with existing business systems.
A support community provides technical support to consumers of a company’s products or services. A strong digital support community can reduce the volume of customer service calls and increase service resolution. This is done by having a group of informed users and customers answering questions from other customers.
A thematic community is used to address a specific topic or related issues. It allows members to express their opinions on specific topics. The typical feature of a topic-based community is that it includes frequently asked questions and “locally sourced” expertise that provides expert advice to generate conversation.
A media community allows users to share news and content about a company. Eyewitness accounts, news events and news leads can be obtained from the media community (but must be verifiable). It acts as a source for eyewitness accounts of the news event and other news leads. The media community allows participants to comment and share opinions as current events.
With a gaming community, members can share gaming experiences, game plans and team building. This is a hybrid group of thematic and developer communities with a great social aspect and very technical discussions. Companies create these communities with the intention of building brand loyalty.
A developer community allows developers to find quick solutions to technical issues. Developers post direct and implicit questions and answers in the same tone. Through this platform, the community can discuss and participate in specific topics related to the development of the technology.
Communities are much more about power than individual talent.