The Two Most Common Reasons Why Branded Communities Fail
There are two basic mistakes brands make that ensure their community cannot succeed. Either of these mistakes will kill a community:
- Launching a community for the wrong benefit.
Brands that try to launch a community for the wrong benefit (e.g. reaching new customers) adaopt an approach that ensures they fail. They will focus on growth, take a marketing mindset, fail to properly engage and scare away any potential community that might try to gather on the platform. A brand can only succeed if it builds a community for the right reasons.
- Misidentifying the strong common interest.
Any brand that builds a community around the wrong interest wont succeed. Often the strong common interest that unites your audience isn't your products/services, it's something different. It might be how the product fits more broadly into your audience's lifestyle, goals and problems. Without correctly finding that strong common interest to build a community around, there is no chance that the community will succeed. The strongest the common interest, the easier it is to build a community – but it doesn't have to be about your brand.
There are clear lessons here. First, make sure that your build a community for the right reasons. This reason must benefit the members, not just you. Second, build a community around a strong common interest members have – even if that isn't about your products and services.
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