Badassery Magazine July 2018 Issue 26 - Page 33

COMMUNITY HAS ITS BENEFITS Community marketing’s purpose is not only for the company to interact with customers, companies create a gathering space for their customers (and potential customers) to interact amongst themselves. The interaction between the community members adds to the user experience by creating connections and maintaining engagement levels. As a business owner, you may jump on the community marketing train for a number of reasons. One that stands out is that community marking is less expensive to initiate compared to traditional marketing and advertising. When you are bootstrapping, this fact alone is reason enough to dive in. Many community platforms, like Facebook or LinkedIn Groups, are free to use (at least for now) loyalty. Your community members get direct access to know and understand you better, and as a “YOUR COMMUNITY MEMBERS GET DIRECT ACCESS TO KNOW AND UNDERSTAND YOU BETTER, AND AS A RESULT, FORM AN EMOTIONAL BOND.” so the barrier to entry is next to nothing. Plus, with Facebook’s addition of group analytics, you can easily gather data about your community’s demographics and engagement. Another benefit of hosting your own community is the ability to strengthen your know-like-trust factor; and therefore, build brand result, form an emotional bond. In addition to customer loyalty and retention, being up close and personal with your audience allows you to listen to comments, praise, and concerns without formal focus groups. You are able to gather data continually and make improvements and innovations that highly valuable to JULY 2018 • 33