Community. We know what it means. It is a group of people with common interests interacting with each other. When it comes to marketing it is important to create connections and build meaningful relationships. You don’t merely want people to sit and watch. You want voluntary interaction and engagement.
However, these questions remain: How is a community different than an audience? How do you create a community of loyal fans to your brand?
Audience vs. Community
An audience is a group of people who read your content, but don't interact with you directly. A community is a group of people that not only read your content, but also interact with you on social media, ask you questions over email, and much more. Audiences spectate while communities are involved.
So how do you foster a community rather than an audience? How do you create the engagement you desire? Here are 5 different things to keep in mind when fostering a community of loyal fans around your brand.
- Content. Content is what yields positive returns for your business and fosters a community of loyal fans to your brand. Find and share valuable content from sources your audience trusts. Video is trending.
- Visuals. We cannot stress this enough. Visuals are what makes people want to read your content. It’s not enough just to have really good content. You must have good content paired with an awesome visual. Content+Visuals=Engagement.
- Connect. Connect with your audience by listening to what they have to say and respond. A good rule to have is that no comment or review should be left unanswered. Always reply! This will show those that are just spectating that you are actually willing to take the time to interact with them.
- Tell Them a Story. Storytelling is a great tool to create valuable experiences. It adds value to your community by connecting people. Giving your audience a story they want to hear will help convey what you are all about, giving your business a more human side. Storytelling is a branding tool that can be used to create valuable experiences.
- Personality. Does your brand have personality? This is an important factor in fostering a brand community. If your brand is dull, who will want to interact with it? Basically, if your brand were a person who would they be? What are some of their traits? Having a consistent image will help your brand resonate with your audience, thus turning them into an interactive community of fans.
Turning an audience into a community that engages with you is often easier said than done. Being consistent is definitely a must with any of your marketing efforts. Building a community starts with great content and amazing visuals. Also telling a story people can connect with and ensuring your brand has a personality will help you create engagement. Creating a community people want to be a part of will ultimately help you grow your business.