They Didn’t Want To Talk To Each Other

Last year, one community manager in the accountancy sector mentioned their target audience didn’t want to talk to each other.

That’s pretty devastating to discover, but is it true?

If you drop a group of accountants in a room together will they sit alone and avoid eye-contact?

I’d bet they will make small talk and then gradually begin sharing more details and information about themselves and their practice.

A random group of people in any field may not want to talk to each other, but, they do want to chat with friends. They do want help to solve their problems. They do want to feel respected and good at what they do.

A bad community concept often masquerades as resistance to talking to others. It’s rarely the case. It just means you need to change your approach.

If they would talk if they were dropped into the same room then drop them into the same room.

If they would talk to solve their biggest problems, let them know what problems people can solve.

If they would talk if they felt respected or admired, make sure they feel respected and admired.

This isn’t the chicken and the egg, from the very first contact with someone you can invite them to an exclusive event for the top [accountants], learn more about their problems, and let them know how respected they would be in the group.

The solution, like many, is about member psychology.

p.s. Final day to sign up for Psychology of Community.

Comments

  1. Jen Blanford says:

    What types of things would you suggest in terms of “dropping people in the same room?” I know that sometimes we will tag people in our community to chime in on various posts. We also will link to related topics. Any other ideas?

  2. Sarah Hawk says:

    I think in this context Rich was referring to the community as a whole as the room. i.e. if you get your concept right you’ll have a room full of people that want to talk.

    That said, your question addresses another great aspect to the discussion – orienting people within the room and facilitating networking. Kinda like name tags.

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