On Feb 24, we’re launching our Psychology of Community course to teach you advanced engagement skills.
Even the best community strategies fail if they’re not matched by advanced engagement skills.
This is harder than it looks.
I’ve seen some normal, charming, friendly people in real life turn into inauthentic corporate drones the moment they start engaging their customers on the web.
The good news is pretty much all of us can write a world-class quality response to any post. The challenge is knowing what world-class looks like and doing it consistently.
In this post, I want to share what world-class engagement skills look like.
Purpose Of Engagement
The goal of engagement (i.e. the one to one direct interactions you have with members) is simple.
You’re trying to positively influence the recipient.
You want the recipient to feel as appreciated, respected, understood, smart, and as influential as they possibly can.
This not only keeps them coming back to the community, but it keeps them as customers too.
The ‘Last 5 Posts’ Test
You might think your engagement skills are great, but can you pass the ‘last 5 posts test’?
Look at your last five interactions with members (no exceptions or cherry picking).
In your last five posts, did you do everything in your power to make members feel as great as possible?
Or did you give a short, factual, response and move on to the next five posts?
Yes, you’re busy. You don’t have time. But the difference between a short, factual, post and a world-class response is typically 30 seconds to 60 seconds.
What Does A Terrific Response Look Like?
A good response has as many of the following as possible.
- It’s friendly. Warm, helpful, possibly playful tone of voice.
- It’s personal. Response @mentions the recipient, references previous interactions, and specific aspects of their question. Did you ask specific clarifying questions to follow up?
- It’s informative. It provides useful information in an easily digestible way (think screenshots, bullet points, and videos, rather than copying and pasting text).
- It makes members feel important. Members feel appreciated for raising the issue, better connected to other members, and feel like they have an impact.
- It resolves the issue. It resolves the underlying frustration, increases the joy, or achieves the goal of not just providing information – but tackling the bigger challenge.
A Breakdown Of A Friendly, Smart, Personal Response
In this course video, I show how to take bad and ‘ok’ responses and turn them into terrific responses.
Make This Your Standard
The goal isn’t just to do this once, but to do this consistently for thousands of posts (as Colleen has done).
Actually, the goal is to make this your standard for how you, your colleagues, and your top members participate.
I’d suggest going through responses with your team once a quarter to look for improvements and provide more training when needed.
Sign Up For Your Psychology of Community Course
We’re going to cover this as part of our Psychology of Community Course.
I think you and your team should consider signing up. We’re going to cover a range of advanced skills including:
- Building and validating member’s personas. This helps you design member journeys, understand how to cater your message to each audience, and determine exactly what you need each member to do.
- Advanced engagement skills. We’re going to help you instill a world-class culture in how you, your team, and your members engage with each other in your community. This will dramatically improve the tone and personality you create.
- Creating a powerful sense of community. We’re going to help you build and create a powerful sense of community to increase retention, attract new members, and ensure everyone feels like they belong to your community.
- Motivating top community members. We’re going to help you get inside your members’ heads and help them make their best possible contributions to your community. If you want more superusers to get more involved, this is crucial.
- Designing a gamification scheme that actually works. Gamification is overrated – unless you do it right. We’re going to take you beyond fantasy internet points and millions of badges to help you set up the perfect gamification system for your audience.
I believe everyone engaging members today should have advanced skills in engagement.
The course begins on February 24, enrollment is open now.