If you’ve built a community from the
beginning, you’ve probably experienced the grind.
The grind is the frustrating process from
the platform launch to regular activity.
During the grind, everything depends upon
you. You have to interact with the target audience. You have to invite people
to join. You have to initiate discussions. You have to nudge people,
repeatedly (frustratingly), to participate.
For a long time, it will feel like the
community isn’t taking off. You might receive one post per day. Over time, that one post becomes two, two becomes four and so on.
Don’t be tempted to months planning out grand strategies and ignore the grind. For every hour we’ve spent on grand
strategies, we’ve spend at least another 100 on the grind. This is the
process of cajoling, persuading, nudging, creating content, facilitating
Figuring out how to get through the grind, both mentally (it sucks your mental energy and enthusiasm) and successfully (it takes skill to cajole, persuade, and nudge people to participate) is worth your time.
If you’re going through the grind today,
just remember that every community builder in the world has gone through the
same process. Everyone that has ever built a community from scratch has had to
spend hours knocking on doors, e-mailing people, nudging them to participate, organizing
poorly attended events, building relationships with a variety of people, and
Try to embrace this. If building
communities was easy, everyone would do it. Fortunately it’s no, that’s why we