The Best Content For Customer Communities
A few years ago, I noticed nearly every community with a calendar of regularly scheduled content published a lot of content very few members engaged with.
It’s hard to create high-quality, valuable, content for a community each day. The novelty of any idea (e.g. member interviews) soon wears thin.
A far better approach is to aim for ‘big win’ content on a less regular schedule. Five types of content are especially useful to members.
1) Case studies. Instead of interviews, post case studies with members instead. Case studies force members to share something interesting they have done which could be valuable for other members. Any videos or long-form advice articles which highlight specifically how members resolved a common challenge or improved their results are great resources within a customer community (and good testimonial material too).
2) Analyses and breakdowns. Do a breakdown of a customer’s situation along with improvements. This is similar to case studies but highlights areas of improvement as well as what’s not going well. Almost every topic lends itself to breakdowns of member situations.
3) Templates and resources. Members find templates useful. Create templates that let members structure their work, plan out a project, and evaluate their success. This saves members time. You can also create templates to tackle topical events.
4) Surveys and data. Your members want to see how they compare to other members. Create a survey on a topical issue and get quantitative data you can reveal to them. This might include time spent on a project, budgets, salary level or anything that might be interesting. This works well when members can compare themselves to the average or use the data to support their own work.
5) Interviews with a VIP. Better than interviews with members is an interview with a genuine VIP in that field. These work best when the person is well known and respected by most of the audience. If you wouldn’t invite this person on stage at a major conference, they’re probably not a good match. Aim as high as possible.
Throw away your calendar of regularly scheduled content and go for the big wins instead.