Sanka Academy

[With stats] 4 surprising benefits of community management


Last Update: May 29, 2023

Hello, community builders 👋

In today’s digitalized world, leading organizations are beginning to adopt strategies that revolve around their communities, and this trend is accelerating.

Why are they investing in their communities? Because it pays.

When done right, community management can positively influence any function of organizations: marketing, customer support, product development, and more.

In this article, we’ll talk about the benefits of community management in detail and why communities are so important for modern-day organizations.

Let’s get started.

Benefits of community management and why it’s important for organizations

In short, well-managed communities can

  • provide deep insights into your products and services
  • increase your customer engagement and loyalty (higher LTV)
  • establish thought leadership in your niche
  • lower customer support cost
  • and many more

What do Nike, Apple, BTS, Patagonia, and Disney all have in common? A community.

Their fanatic community members (whatever they’re actually called - followers, audiences, supporters, customers, etc.) give organizations tremendous value in branding, customer support, and product insights, to name a few.

What’s more, when your people are actively engaged with your community, they are more likely to protect your brands, building a real moat for businesses.

Maybe you’ve seen someone supporting specific products and services irrationally - that’s the power of branding and community.

Now let’s look at each benefit in more detail with stats.

Insights into products and services

Your audience is ready and willing to be more than just customers.

They can be your guide.

72% of 800 professionals in wide industries utilize communities for feedback and insight on how existing products are used, Get Satisfaction (acquired by Sprinklr) reported.

Community management helps to build and maintain relationships with and among the audience, and transform them into a core fanbase.

Fans who feel like they belong to your community are more likely to provide insights for you, give thorough feedback, and help you craft a strategy for your products and services together.

According to the research conducted by Sector Intelligence, 86% of Fortune 500 brands who responded to the survey report had experienced "deeper/richer insight into customer needs" through their communities.

Gaining product insights through a community isn’t just for large companies, though. It’s also helpful for new projects when products and services are loosely defined and you’re still looking for feedback. (This is why we see community management not only in the Go-To-Market sense but also in the product and market development sense).

Here are a few ways to get insights from your community.

  • Surveys: If you already have an audience for your project you can run a quick survey around your offerings. The good part is it’s fast and the result is clear. The bad part is often survey misses nuances and contexts so you need to dig deeper from there. And sometimes response rate is low and you need to have a larger audience size (more than 100).
  • Contests: You can leverage your community to get insights by running contests; giving a small reward to the top three winners who provided the most inspiring answers, for example. The good part is it engages more than surveys. The challenge is prep work requires more time and resources.
  • Interviews: You can coordinate calls with your members and conduct interviews. This is straightforward and you can dig deep depending on how conversations go. Most members would feel happy and proud answering your calls which is another benefit. The only con is it takes time so you need to be careful about the operation.

Building Trust and improving engagement, retention, and LTV

Today, the most important factor for consumers when shopping online is trust.

55% of consumers say trustworthiness and transparency are the most important traits of a brand.

This is why community management can be your solution to building trust — it can help to foster trust among your audience.

By solving the problem of trust with the power of community, you can achieve improved customer engagement and retention, and, as a result, higher LTV.

Audiences who are treated well through a consistent and genuine conversation trust your brand and are more likely to remain loyal to your brand.

They are also likely to recommend it to family and friends, especially when they experience an exceptional level of service.

Here are things you can expect through community management:

  • Better engagement: When you build a strong relationship with your audience, you increase the chances that they will interact with your offers more. Whether it’s your retail goods or software services, the conversion tends to be higher than non-community members.
  • Retention: When customers feel like they are part of a community, they are more likely to stay with your brand and continue using the product or service. Additionally, community management can help to foster loyalty by creating a sense of belonging among members.
  • Trust: Community management can also help to build relationships and trust among community members. When customers feel like they are part of a community, they are more likely to build relationships with other members. This can lead to increased trust and customer satisfaction, and, in the long run, build a moat for your business.
  • Higher LTV: Community management can also help to increase customer lifetime value (LTV). LTV is the total amount of money that a customer spends on a product or service over the course of their life. When customers feel like they are part of a community, they are more likely to continue using the product or service and refer others to it. This can lead to increased CLV for your company.

To summarize, community management can help to improve engagement and loyalty among customers, build relationships between customers and members, and increase customer lifetime value.

Establishing Brand and Thought Leadership

Another benefit of community management is that it can help to boost brand awareness and position your brand as a thought leader in your niche.

Today, around one in three consumers use social media to learn about or discover new products, services, or brands. Community management will extend the power of social media and its brand reach even further.

Growing Brand Awareness and Recognition

Community management can help grow brand awareness and recognition by getting your brand in front of more people.

And since a company’s social media pages are likely to be viewed by a wider audience than its website, effective use of community management can also help to increase brand awareness.

When people see a company’s name in their SNS feed again and again, they are more likely to remember it than if they simply visit the website.

When you engage with your community right, you increase the chances of your members becoming advocates for your project, and as a result, you get a wide reach.

This can help to increase brand awareness and recognition over time.

Becoming a Thought Leader through Community

A key advantage of community management is that it can help to establish your brand as an expert in its field.

When you manage a community, you have the opportunity to share your knowledge and expertise with the members of your community.

This helps to build trust and credibility; members will see you as an expert in your field, and they will be more likely to turn to you for advice and guidance.

It’s really simple; the more you engage your community, the more likely they listen to you (and your products and services as well).

The research by GWI shows that making connections with other people who have similar interests (66%) is one of the primary reasons why users engage in online communities.

This way, your can drive traffic while also boosting your brand’s reputation.

Additionally, community management can help you stay up-to-date on industry trends. When you are actively involved in a community, you have access to the latest information and news shared by your community members.

This allows you to stay ahead of the curve and ensure that you are always up-to-date on the latest trends in your niche.

Lowering customer support costs

Community management can create specific relationships that other departments cannot; these are many-to-many relationships.

In well-run communities, members resolve problems and handle complaints themselves - which is almost a dream for companies struggling to close support tickets themselves.

Additionally, community management can help to deepen members' understanding of your offerings, as a result, the volume of support inquiries decreases.

Your community is also a great learning opportunity for you to create self-serve customer support documents (aka knowledge base) because it’s where problems are addressed and concerns are shared in real-time.

In this way, you can help to reduce any misunderstandings or misconceptions about certain products or services.

40 percent of customers in a survey by Forbes said they prefer self-service over human contact.

Once you create a community around your products, services, and brands, you build a stronger and more scalable ecosystem to support your customers.

We’ve seen too many pros for community management, haven’t we? Let’s take a look at the risks and cons of community management before we close out.

Risks and Cons of Community Management

Community management isn’t a silver bullet for every problem, though.

There are a few risks and potential cons associated with community management.

One of the biggest risks is a community backfire.

There will always be some members of your community who are unhappy with the way things are run. It's important to be prepared for this and to have the plan to handle and moderate the tough conversations.

Another potential con is that managing a community can be time-consuming and overwhelming.

This is why we suggest having a dedicated community manager; also it's important to be organized and to have a good system in place for keeping track of community tasks.

This can be even more difficult to do if the community size becomes larger.

Wrap-up and Next Action

In summary, community management can bring tremendous value to any size of business.

It helps to find insights, increase customer engagement, and build brand awareness.

Moreover, it also has the potential to increase loyalty among customers while maintaining control over negative media coverage and comments that could damage the brand's reputation.

We hope you'll take what you've learned in this post and use it to build strong, thriving communities.

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