3 Rules to Encourage Online Participation

How many online communities are you “part of” but rarely frequent? Or have you started an online group only to let your efforts wither? We start with the best of intentions but without active reminders to participate or create content, we simply won’t.

Usually the simplest answer is best. When working with clients, we have found that a concise but regular notification via good old fashioned email to community members is a necessary short-term evil for getting momentum. How do you do this without causing aggravation among those you are trying to reach?

Set yourself 3 rules.

  1. Recipients will be low on time and tolerance, so make your message clear and brief. You have to get your message across quickly – and the more targeted you can make it the better.
  2. Encourage a specific action as a result of reading the email, rather than just imparting general information.
  3. Once 1) and 2) start to deliver increased traffic and participation, reduce the frequency of email – if new habits are becoming truly ingrained the community will start to become self-sustaining over time.
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