We recently looked at a large dataset of several dozen communities to determine if the time to first response influenced the odds of someone participating again.
This is what we found:
After just 18 hours, the likelihood of a member ever participating again drops precipitously.
If you’re looking at a community system today, I’d suggest:
1) Develop a system to flag when a newcomer has made their first post.
2) If the newcomer didn’t get a response within the first few hours, flag the post to the community team or participants of the MVP program.
3) If there still isn’t a response after 18 hours, respond yourself as a priority.
I’d love to see community platforms that could prioritise questions to reply to by attributes like this. But until we have this, it’s worth doing yourself.