how to build an enterprise online community

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How to build an Enterprise Community was the discussion I lead at PodCamp Boston 2009 conference. This presentation exposes the 12 stage model for enterprise community building strategy.


  • 1. L E A D E R NETWORKS How Can You Build Community For The Enterprise?Vanessa DiMauroCEO, Leader Networks & SNCR Fellow Podcamp BostonAugust, 2009

2. L E A D E R NETWORKSFraming Questions What is different about enterprise communities (vs. consumer communities)?How do you build a community for the enterprise?What are the models?What does the building process look like?What are critical success factors?What can go wrong?What do you want to add?..... Copyright 2009 Leader Networks2 3. L E A D E R NETWORKS Three General Community Models B2B B2CHybridSelect, narrow target Open call, all interestedaudienceTiered membershipMember directedAcceptance criteria Consensus/Trend drivenPublic forumProtected dialogPublic forum w/ private areaBig bangFacilitated discussionThought leadershipModerated discussion(responsive)Managed topical agendaAd generated supportHybrid RevenuesSponsor supported andsometimes member fees3 Copyright 2009 Leader Networks 4. L E A D E R NETWORKS12 Step Process OverviewCreate Vision Target & Segment Audience Query Potential Members Build Value Proposition Architect Business Value Justification & Measurements Benchmark Competition & Best of Breed Determine Brand Positioning Design Features & Functionality Engage a Beta Group Launch with Finesse Manage Risk EvolveCopyright 2009 Leader Networks4 5. L E A D E R NETWORKS Good Enterprise Community Strategic Planning:Create Vision What does the What do community business need for members need the community tofrom the community be successful?to get value?Begin with the end in mind Find the overlap & build for relevance to both audiencesCopyright 2009 Leader Networks 5 6. L E A D E R NETWORKS Target and Segment Your Audience Understanding who you serve and inwhat ways provides the drivingbusiness rationale for an enterprisecommunity program. This leads to members who engagewith each other and the enterpriseand sustains their interest.The who dictates the where, when, why and how. Who are the key constituencies for your community? Copyright 2009 Leader Networks 6 7. L E A D E R NETWORKSQuery Potential Audiences Survey or interview your target audience to find out what they are missing in their current experience with your company Create a structured interview guide with semi-formal interview program Follow up with quantitative study Dont ask about features inquire about needs! Also, Talk to marketing, sales, product development to learn what they are doing for clients and prospects that could be leveraged online Copyright 2009 Leader Networks 7 8. L E A D E R NETWORKSBuild Value Proposition If-then arguments and causal relationships are key to building valuepropositions that are rooted in need and reality For example: If we create a customer support forum then we can support more customers online and reduce human support costs If we use a WIKI for a collaborative product manual then we will catch product errors quicker Copyright 2009 Leader Networks 8 9. L E A D E R NETWORKSArchitect Business Justification You become what you measure so select your measurements carefully Interactivity ratios Number or nature of deliverables to product marketing, management, clients Cost/ ROI Client retention statistics tied to use of product features and services New client data - impact analysis Press and goodwill Case studies, client testimonials etc. Once launched, use the tools available to you to impact change Log analysis, market segmentation, individualized messaging & outreach, knowledge gifts Copyright 2009 Leader Networks9 10. L E A D E R NETWORKSBenchmark Competition & Best of Breed Who is doing what with whom? Look at direct and indirect competes Analyze their web 2.0 strategies and initiatives Help-wanted ads are a good way to predict competitors future efforts Who is talking about your company and in what way? Monitor the Blogosphere Actively manage your reputation online Copyright 2009 Leader Networks 10 11. L E A D E R NETWORKSDetermine Brand Positioning Develop Market Plans New users often means new markets understand and target the members that matter most Execute with the precision of any well-planned market strategy Community is not a project it is a new line of business Copyright 2009 Leader Networks 11 12. L E A D E R NETWORKSDesign Features and Functions Use business goals and user needs as told through the user research to identify key feature sets Dont search for a vendor until you know the critical feature sets and how they should behave Understand and map the business process that the community endeavors to support Copyright 2009 Leader Networks 12 13. L E A D E R NETWORKSEngage a Beta Group Involve users in the social design of the communityAsk their opinionGather UGC from them such a member feature articles and interviewsPre-populate the community before formal launch with their participation Copyright 2009 Leader Networks 13 14. L E A D E R NETWORKSLaunch With Finesse Design and create appropriate member acquisition materials & marketing assets Keep company core messaging and brand extension ever-present The enterprise community is an extension of your brand Remember that different messages can motivate different constituents of the same community Project into the future and strike the right tone.. (Reasonable) Early success claims can motivate participation Plan for a steady member acquisition drum-beat: the hard work *start* once the community is live! Copyright 2009 Leader Networks14 15. L E A D E R NETWORKS Integrate Plans And Outcomes Into The Organization Use your knowledge assets widely Leveraging what you learn Sales Marketing Customer Service Product Development Research & Development Competitive Intelligence Copyright 2009 Leader Networks15 16. L E A D E R NETWORKS Manage RiskRisk Factors Risk Mitigation StrategiesFailure to launch The power of a Beta group Failure to vetRules of engagement (whos in whos out?)Wacko factor and disaster scenarioLack of transparency planning Public criticism Governance policy Failure to thrivePlan BSuccessful community that doesnt supportGo / no-go decision point based on active business goals measures on quarterly basis Copyright 2009 Leader Networks 16 17. L E A D E R NETWORKS Sample Metrics for an Enterprise Community Financial Metrics: Revenue generated (direct and indirect i.e. client retention or passthrough revenue gained through bundled services) Minus operational costs Operational Metrics: Fully burdened costs of community operations includingtechnology, development, content acquisition, staffing. Business Metrics: Click-throughs/logins, industries serviced, # of members who areclients, title portfolio of membership, Marketing Metrics: New member acquisition costs, Cost per Member (CPM) againstRevenue per Member (RPM), Event or campaign outcomes Editorial Metrics: Cost of content creation, % of UGC, content ratings/rank Member Metrics: # of members login/time, % of profiles complete, return rate,premium conversion rate, revenue generated per member, number of posts permember, average page views per member or group, member engagement ratios Copyright 2009 Leader Networks 17 18. L E A D E R NETWORKS The Role of Governance in Achieving Results The role of Governance is how to manage the community day to day behavior toachieve the goals.Key tactics Define roles and responsibilities, including cross functional involvement within the organization Establish continuous improvement programs, success metrics and budgeting and planning cycles Copyright 2009 Leader Networks 18 19. L E A D E R NETWORKS Governance Structure Time < 6 Time > 6months months (post(now tolaunch ifOrganizational Role/FunctionOwnership launch)different) Impact (+ or - )TechnologyContent Member services (Community Manager)Strategy & measurementSales/PartnershipsExecutive sponsor Marketing & audience acquisition19 20. L E A D E R NETWORKS Best Practice Methodology for Effective Community Community Company, Branding & Technology Content &Community Continuous Framework Engagement & Marketing CommunicationEvolution Improvement Governance Execution Strategy &Goals, models, Identity,StrategicEditorial plan,Profile, target Leading metrics, revenue, competitivefeaturesourcing, calendar audienceprogram Planinvestment,positioning, mapping,definition, management milestones,target audienceIdentifystaffing plan ownershipresearch & challenges &validation,acquisitionmarketing plan needsLaunchRevise milestones, Campaign Select, acquire, Develop initialMember &Revise metrics, set performancemanagement,implementcontent, acquire sponsor establish reporting Execution metrics, establish press/PR, designand/or assignacquisition,process & tools reporting &elementseditorial, loadmoderation advisory structureprocess, hiring Evolve &Review/reviseRefresh design,Maintain,Monitor trends, reactMemberRevise leading & revenue model, monitor digitalrevise, upgrade, to activity, hot topics, retention, newlagging metrics, Improve investment & impact,secure,repurpose, provide segment respond to staffing competitivebusiness analytical value acquisition,issues/problems,assessment,continuitycustomerprocessrefine message satisfactionimprovementsCopyright 2009 Leader Networks 20 21. L E A D E R NETWORKS SAMPLE Work PlanACTIVITY GOALTIMEFRAME Strategic planning Build consensus and create draft straw modelWorkshopUser Experience profiles Interview audience segments to develop profiles of4-6 weeksusers Benchmark Competition & Best ofSWOT analysis of competitors and best of breed5-6 weeks Breedout of industry models Design Features & FunctionalityCreate BRD (business requirements document) 4-8 weeksSelect technology architecture and Define technology platform; RFI and/or RFP for6 to 24 weeks software vendor & deploy ven