online community

The 10 fundamental keys to building a thriving digital community

February 22, 2023

Tribe. Clan. Family.

These are the true meanings behind a powerful close-knit community.

But how do you actually achieve this with your audience?

How can you make your members feel like they’re part of something special?

The truth is if a community doesn't evoke these unity-like feelings – it won’t have that raw power to evolve and grow.

So in this article, we’re going to dig into 10 key fundamentals that will help you build not only a thriving community – but one your members can be proud to be a part of.

Let’s dive in!

Always display authenticity with your members

Your community needs to reflect your organization’s values, beliefs, and mission. When you’re totally genuine and transparent, members are more likely to trust and engage with you.

Share your story, be open about challenges, and make the space inviting for members to share their own stories and challenges! 

Collect important data

Data is so important for understanding what’s exactly happening in your community – and why it happens. Being data-driven lets you gather information on who your members are, their demographics, and their specific interests – so you can craft content (and talk to them) in the way they want!

Gather feedback from your members

Ask them what’s working (and what’s not) – and be 100% open to improvement suggestions. Actually encouraging your members to share their ideas and thoughts is one of the only ways you can grow with their best interests in mind. Never just assume what your members want.

Be flexible and open to experiment

Not being willing to be flexible with your members is the best route to an unengaged community. Be completey open to experimenting and trying new things. If you experience common issues from your members about something, don’t ignore them and hope it will go away. Work to tweak things and find what works best!

Get everybody on the same page

 We touched on how your values and mission are super important earlier, and that ties into another point – getting everyone on the same page.This means you all collectively strive to tackle similar pains and problems all members experience. The best digital communities make sure everyone works together to achieve their goals in unison – which results in more posts, higher engagement, and a deeper emotional bond for everyone.

And that is what will keep your community always active.

Have mobile and non-mobile interaction options

Remember that different members will have different preferences for how they interact. Some will engage from their PC, while others love to just interact on their phone. Make sure accessibility is set up to cater to everyone so you can always maximize engagement opportunities.

Keep Careful Records to Resolve Disputes and Protect Operations Generally

Record keeping is a must for keeping law and order in a thriving community. When arguments get out of hand (and they will), you must have guidelines and a dispute process in place to refer to and take action on.

Keeping records of members and their interactions means you can assess and justify if you need to block (or ban) any members inside. This is the bedrock for keeping your community a safe and positive place.

Snoop on your competition and see what’s working (and what’s not)

There’s nothing wrong with snooping on your competitor’s communities to see what they’re doing right or wrong. These communities are usually free and public so getting access to them is simple. See what posts are getting good engagement, see how often they are communicating with their members, and explore how they have the infrastructure set up. But just don’t copy them! 

Put your own spin on it and tailor it to your organization and your unique audience. 

Integrate and use the RIGHT social media structure

Weaving social media in your community can be extremely powerful for engagement. But the type of media has to align right with your organization and members.

Understand that social platforms have a unique style and you need to figure out what’s best for your audience. For example, Facebook and Instagram focus on visual content – while Twitter focuses more on live, text-based posts.

Once you grasp this, you can tailor social media content for your members to exactly how your members prefer. This ties in with what we said earlier about being data-driven.

Incentivize your members for their interactions

Rewarding members for their loyal interactions is so important to keep them content within your community. There’s lots of incentives you can choose such as: 

Leaderboards, exclusive content, monetary incentives (like gift cards), and even recruitment incentives – like becoming an admin for the community.

Just don’t do this too often or your members will start expecting rewards, rather than being genuinely grateful when it comes.  

And there we have it! Those are the 10 keys to building and sustaining a thriving community your members will be proud to be a part of.

Now you might be asking… “how do I actually set all this stuff up?”

Listen, we get that these 10 success keys can be hard to put into action – especially if your team is still small. But with a community management app like, these community foundations are done for you. 

And set up in just a few minutes.

Give your members a fast and socially-driven space they need to create interactive posts, make close connections with others, and form their own private groups within.

You can also easily share any key events and dates with your members using ready-made templates. 

Wiv helps you grow your member base easily on a completely done-for-you app!

Click here to discover how you can build a thriving community with Wiv.

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