The Two Most Common Reasons Why Branded Communities Fail

March 21, 2011 Comments Off

There are two basic mistakes brands make that ensure their community cannot succeed. Either of these mistakes will kill a community:

  1. 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
  2. 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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