Discover the limits of social networks to manage and engage your communities in 2021.
So to bring together its various communities (customers, prospects, partners, shareholders, employees...), digital tools are now favored. But are they all adapted to animate and engage BtoB communities? Are social networks essential in a "Community Centric" strategy? All the answers from MeltingSpot are in this article 👇
In 2021, are all communities virtual?
A community is a group of individuals gathered around common characteristics. These characteristics can be based on shared values, interests, a bond of belonging to the same company, etc.
Here, we are of course interested in the communities that surround a company: community of customers, suppliers, journalists and influencers, employees, followers, shareholders... There are many of them!
In 2021, two prejudices about communities consist in thinking that:
1️⃣ The majority of communities would be virtual.
2️⃣ Those that are not should still rely on digital to communicate, especially via social networks.
At MeltingSpot, despite our digital-friendly DNA, we cannot agree with such a discourse.
❌ No, a community is not necessarily virtual. Communities that bring together individuals in person are still numerous. And to grow, not all of them need to rely on digital media, such as social networks. Ready to find out why?
Why aren't social networks always a source of engagement for communities?
When talking about communities (and more precisely BtoB communities), the main issue is to engage and animate a whole group of professionals in the long term. To achieve this, defining a "Community-Centric" strategy on social networks is not always necessary.
The reasons are simple:
👉 Social networks are not always an effective and relevant gathering place. If your target (community members) is not used to using them, the effect will be counterproductive... And despite all your efforts, you will have a hard time motivating your community to be active on social networks.
👉 The possibilities in terms of interactions are sometimes limited and often difficult to manage. On social networks, it is easier to build an audience (which consumes content, with one-sided information sharing from the company) than a real proactive community! This nuance is to be taken into account.
👉 In 2021, federating a BtoB community on social networks is neither original nor differentiating. Content is difficult to personalize, and infobesity can scare away Internet users. When you know that 500 million tweets are published every day (that's 6,000 per second) or that every day, Instagram users miss 70% of their feed (according to Hubspot, 2021)... Clearly, social media is not the place to create relevant, memorable, and cohesive exchanges.
💡For example, imagine a B2B company with a community of shareholders. Do you think creating a Facebook or LinkedIn group is an effective way to drive engagement? The same is true for a supplier community, which operates a business that is decorrelated from digital. Depending on the nature of the community, social networks are not always the best way to gather and engage over time.
Finally, a last piece of advice: beware of the shiny object syndrome. Many social networks are emerging and are getting a real buzz from Internet users. But are these social networks destined to last? Is it a stable and efficient strategy to bet on them to gather a community? Beware of haste!
5 questions to ask yourself to engage a community (outside social networks!)
You now know that "community engagement" does not necessarily rhyme with "community management" on social networks. But then, how do you engage a community of customers, suppliers, shareholders or employees... Without relying on a Social Media strategy?
To find out the answer, MeltingSpot invites you to ask yourself 5 questions. Don't hesitate to survey your community members to get all the answers:
1. In a few words, how do I define my community and the members who make it up?
2. What are the habits, preferences and expectations of this community?
3. Are the members of this community comfortable with digital?
4. What are my community's preferred exchange formats?
5. Are my community members active (even proactive) individuals or passive content consumers?
✅ Depending on the answers, it will be easier to identify the actions to prioritize to animate and engage the community. And among the likely actions you could activate, there's one you won't regret: trusting an all-in-one marketing tool like MeltingSpot, to organize differentiating events.
Indeed, events are a timeless, relevant and effective way to engage your B2B communities. Depending on the type of community, these events can be virtual, physical or even hybrid. MeltingSpot helps you deploy the most coherent formats to meet your community's expectations: forums, trade shows, webinars, open days, team building, onboarding...
🚀 So, are you ready to create, animate and boost the engagement of your communities without betting only on social networks? Discover our platform now.