Every single online community needs a news page.
This news page should be the landing page.
You can (and should) have other elements on your landing page, but the news page is vital. It’s your ultimate weapon of influence over your community.
By mentioning names of members on your news page, you establish a social hierarchy. Top members continue contributing to defend their status, others participate to increase their status (sounds wrong, but it’s an essential element of any group). You get to decide who’s hot (or not).
Your news page keeps the community fresh. You update it every day. You can give other members an opinion column or a guest post. You can interview your members. The news post lets you give other members appreciation, recognition and influence over others.
Your news page lets you set the theme for discussion. It lets you announce new things to the community. Your news page keeps encouraging people to come back. It updates those that haven’t been following the discussions for a few days.
Your news page, in short, is essential. Don’t try to develop a community without it.