Here is why Pradeep Kumar (Blogger) started Online Communities
Communities and Groups are generally common on the Internet, each and every platform out there will have this. From "Orkut" and "Facebook" to "WhatsApp" and "Telegram" we have seen a lot of Groups a.k.a. Communities.
Communities and Groups are generally common on the Internet, each and every platform out there will have this. From "Orkut" and "Facebook" to "WhatsApp" and "Telegram" we have seen a lot of Groups a.k.a. Communities. Most of the Families will have a WhatsApp group to stay in touch with their loved ones, no matter how far they are. Here is a story of a Blogger, Pradeep Kumar, who created online communities for his Slashsquare network and running them successfully.
The Indian Blogger recalls: "I remember the days back then clearly, Yahoo! was extremely popular, I was regularly using Yahoo! Messenger and Yahoo! Mail. While I was emailing someone, I have no idea to whom, I came across "Yahoo! Groups." It's a simple email group concept where we can create and send emails. When you do that, it'll go to the entire group. I liked the way it worked, so I created one for my blog and started to promote it amongst my friends. This is my first direct experience with online groups. After that, I created my first Orkut account, and when I saw the Community/Group option, I created one asap."
Online groups are usually closed or secret, like, restricted only to the members, only they can see the content. This is an excellent measure to respect their privacy. You can also discuss with your members and see which one suits them the most.
How to make people join? How to make them trust? Here are some tips shared by Pradeep: "Making a member join a group is pretty easy; the hectic part is to make him/her not leave the group. The Internet is a crowded place, right; they have a lot of things to do online. Instead of that, if they are going to spend their time in our community, we need to give something valuable to them. It can be an informative discussion or some refreshing entertainment. It doesn't matter as long as it serves the community's purpose."
He says the whole purpose of a good community is to have a proper discussion; the group admins should motivate and encourage the members to participate. After his encounter with the Orkut Groups, he moved to Facebook and started creating groups there. By this, he formed the basement of his Slashsquare blog network. He has the habit of launching social media communities before publicly launching his blog. This helped him to build a community, gain a proper audience, and build his blog from scratch via that. He wants to analyze his audience first, see their needs and queries, then make a content strategy according to that.
Pradeep Kumar adds, "Creating a community can be tricky and sometimes challenging because we have a lot of similar ones out there. There is no reason why they should come to us if they can get good responses from other communities." He suggests we need to provide exclusive content to the members, which should be only accessible on the group and nowhere else. Treat every member equally, give them the freedom to criticize you publicly, and correct you if you do anything wrong. The group members should see the admin and moderators as fellow members, not as someone with a dictatorship mindset.
Apart from Facebook Groups, Pradeep Kumar is also running forums for HBB, DeviceBAR, GameThem, and other brands. He wants to experiment on all the possible ways to connect with everyone and learn/share useful stuff.
He often quotes, "When in doubt, ask a community." The concept of community is viral these days, we can see that everywhere, and it's an excellent way to connect with like-minded people. But, at the same time, you need to be careful about the kind of information one shares. When a wrong piece of information reaches a community, it can misdirect them in unimaginable ways.