Which brands are you incredibly loyal to? You make repeat purchases, signed up for the email list, attend their events, participate in their forums, and heavily engage with them on social media. That kind of loyal.
Whatever brand it is, it’s safe to say they’ve tapped into the power of community. By including community building in their marketing goals, they’ve managed to bring loyal customers and brand fans together to build a family around their businesses.
Building a community isn’t just for the big brands and businesses. You can do it too. Here’s how you can create a community for your brand by expanding your marketing.
Deepen Your Knowledge of Your Target Audience
A strong brand community is only possible when you know your target audience deeply. Therefore, your knowledge of your current and potential customers must be more profound than demographic information.
Take the data you’re already collecting on your target audience and use it to learn more about their needs, challenges, values, and lifestyle. Building a community is much easier when you know what your audience is going through, how they think, live, and what they need to thrive.
In addition to deepening your knowledge of your target audience, peep what your competition is doing to build their communities.
See What Your Competition is Doing
Your biggest competition has likely built a solid community of its own. You can learn from their approach to community-building to create the best one for your brand.
Set aside time to see what your competition is doing. What’s their community like? Who’s a part of it? What’s their engagement like? What kind of content are your competitors producing to keep their community engaged? Do they have a forum or membership site? What are they doing offline to continue building their community?
Once you’ve got a vision for your community, define your goals and plans to make it a reality.
Define Goals for Your Community
Now, it’s time to define what you want for your community. You must also determine how community-building fits into your overarching marketing strategy. In other words, how will building a community enhance your marketing strategy?
It’s essential to create specific goals for how you will grow your community and what you want it to look like when it’s all said and done.
For instance, one of your goals could be to create a community forum on your website. Or, grow your email list to 10,000 subscribers before starting a members-only site to share tips, techniques, thoughts, and other information related to your products/services, audience, and industry.
In addition to your goals, develop a specific strategic plan for your community-building efforts. Doing so will help you clarify your mission. It’ll also assist you in defining a step-by-step plan for achieving your community vision with your team with as few roadblocks as possible.
With a clear plan of attack for building your community, start on your social media platforms.
Lean into Your Social Media Presence
It would be challenging to create a strong brand community without social media. The majority of your target audience spends time on social media daily. So, you’d be passing up a huge opportunity to connect with your community if you don’t lean into your social media presence.
Revisit your social media marketing strategy. What do you need to adjust in your strategy to support your goal of building a community?
Think about the kind of content you need to create, how often, and where you need to post it. Factor in how your target audience behaves on social media. Also, dig deep for creative ideas that set you apart so that more and more people visit your brand and become interested in joining your community.
Furthermore, on social media and every other marketing channel, focus on creating and distributing unique content.
Focus on Exceptional Content
What is exceptional content? Well, it’s essentially unforgettable. When someone encounters extraordinary content, it becomes engrained in their brain. It moves them emotionally and drives them to take action. It’s an experience rather than just another blog post or promotional video.
Brainstorm what kind of content would move your target audience. Think about different media types, messaging ideas, and how to package your content to give your community an unforgettable experience. It’s all about putting out content that brings people back to your brand over and over again.
It’s also a brilliant idea to leverage influencer marketing to build your community.
Leverage Influencer Marketing
Influencer marketing is somewhat new to the marketing world. But it’s at the top of the list of marketing tactics that can bring people together. Getting influencers your target audience loves and trusts to advocate for your brand and its products or services can boost your community-building efforts.
If you’ve yet to explore influencer marketing, this is your sign to do so. Conducting thorough research on potential influencers before reaching out to them is critical. Look at the values that your influencer, audience, and yourself have in common. Pay attention to the influencer’s engagement, and if they live a lifestyle your brand promotes.
Once you choose suitable influencers to work with, you can make branded swag and send it to them to use in the content they create for their influencer campaign.
A community forum should also become a part of your marketing strategy.
Create a Community Forum
A community forum is a place where people meet online to have discussions, share knowledge, and connect. It can be influential in growing a community of people who love your brand.
You can answer customer questions, ask for feedback, post product videos and tutorials, host branded swag giveaways, share industry news, and anything else you deem fit for your unique community.
Creating a community forum gives customers a place to go that’s all about your brand and the people interacting with it. It’s exclusive, and people love to be a part of things that aren’t available to everyone.
So, create a community forum for your brand. It could be a password-protected page on your website that only those on your email list can access. It could be a Facebook group or a “close-friends” circle on Instagram. Any place online where you can facilitate an ongoing conversation with your audience will work.
Creating a community as part of your marketing strategy doesn’t have to be challenging. However, it will take time. So, implement the tips above, and give yourself the time and space to expand your marketing strategy to support your goal of creating a solid community around your brand.