Have you been toying with the idea of building a B2B community?
Before you start reaching out to people, there are a few things you’ll want to plan out first. In this episode of Demand Gen U, we share a little about how Metadata launched its community. Jason Widup, VP of Marketing, is joined by Katie Ray, Head of Community at Metadata, who shares some great takeaways for any business looking to build a community.
Katie and Jason share some insights into the initial planning process, how they decided what type of community to build, and what you should prioritize if you want your community to thrive.
For tips and insights into how to build a B2B community the right way, tune in to the full episode.
Top three takeaways:
Takeaway 1: Build a community for the right reasons
Before you dive into building a community from the ground up, it’s important to take a step back and ask yourself one question: why do you want to build a community?
Many marketing or sales leaders will think of revenue-building or demand generation. But that’s the wrong approach. Your sole reason for building a community shouldn’t be to drive revenue and growth. Those are definitely great, but the focus of a community should be to deliver value – not for the business, but for your community.
If you think you can add value to a community, then go ahead. But if you’re still unsure of your reasons for building a community (beyond making more money), it’s time to go back to the drawing board.
Takeaway 2: Community is for the members, not the business
In a similar vein, when you do take the leap and start building a community, it’s important not to lose sight of who it’s all for. Don’t get distracted by revenue figures, analytics, or how you’re going to meet business KPIs.
Remember, the point of a community is to deliver value to its members.
That means all the decisions you make as a community manager should be centered around your members. If you’re not sure what a community wants, it’s simple. Just ask them. Regular polling and feedback are important so you can deliver not what your business thinks is valuable or what your marketing manager finds useful but what your community actually wants.
Takeaway 3: A growing community should eventually pay for itself
Of course, revenue and growth do come into it at some point. While they are more byproducts of the community, if you’ve played your cards right, you should start seeing returns eventually.
In fact, your community might even begin to pay for itself – in terms of sales/growth coming from your community and offsetting any expenses, for example, your community manager’s salary.
It won’t happen overnight, but once you have a thriving, growing, and highly engaged community, it can essentially become self-funding.