If you’re struggling, try this approach instead.
Forget persuading 10,000 members to join your community. That’s a little pointless. Focus instead on getting the 100 best people to join your community.
If you could persuade the 100 top neuroscientists in the world to join an online community, you would be worth a fortune. Keeping them happy is a business in itself. The opportunities for endorsements, representation, events, product advocates, feedback groups is limitless.
You can build an entire business around the model of targeting tiny groups of brilliant people and connecting them. Connecting elite people is the biggest opportunity for online community builders. It’s less work, more manageable and highly profitable.
If you’re struggling to build a community, make a list of ‘dream members’. Then focus all your efforts on reaching them (you can’t send unsolicited e-mails), connecting them (events work well) and fostering a sense of community.
You would be bold to pitch this idea to your boss “hey lets target the 100 perfect customers rather than the 100,000 maximum customers”. But fortune favours the bold.