When starting an online community, you want people to visit and stay active in it daily. The goal is to build an online space that has some magic about it and isn’t just a collection of users. There are many ways to boost community engagement and the platform where you host your crowd will define your actions to a large degree. Chatwee, the community chat app, has a ton of features to help you activate the members in the chat rooms. Here are some of the best of them.
As the community founder, owner, or manager, you can’t idly wait for things to just click on their own. You have to lead, take action, and point members to ways they can get more out of your community platform.
Coming up with creative ways to boost community engagement isn’t easy but today I got something for you.
Chatwee, which is a group chat app designed specifically for communities, is equipped with plenty of features promoting user engagement and interaction that will get your audience involved.
Before I discuss how you can increase community engagement using Chatwee, let’s touch on some related issues for a better understanding of the situation.
Social media vs. your own platform
Social media have been created with the goal of connecting people and bringing them together (well, that and collecting user behavior data). Starting out on Facebook may be fine, as it may be easier to acquire the initial following there, but eventually you’ll have to consider moving off it.
Staying on social media forever is distracting for community members and risky in general due to various changing policies that may affect your presence there. All in all, social media isn’t a long-term solution if you want to grow a thriving online community. Migrating to your own space is THE move.
If you’re going to start on any of the popular networks that’s fine but develop a transfer plan where you highlight the benefits of your own platform, stay active there, and offer exclusives.
Why aim to boost community engagement at all?
What’s the most important feature of a successful online community? Is it the member count? Fancy user profiles? Having exclusive, members-only content?
These are all important for sure but engagement is THE marker of an actual community, otherwise it’s just a group of loosely connected people.
Regardless of the size of your community, most members will probably be lurkers so you need to find ways to turn them into active participants.
First, you need to create an environment for user involvement by providing an interactive platform, preferably outside social media, and then take further actions to boost community engagement, instead of waiting for things to just happen on their own.
Chatwee features to boost community engagement
Now that you understand the importance of migrating away from social media, or perhaps wish to launch your own space right away, it’s time to choose the community platform.
The selection is rich but Chatwee combines affordability, extreme ease of implementation, and abundance of features. It’ll meet the requirements of any type of online community you may set out to establish or already run.
Chatwee is all about user engagement, period. The app has been developed to provide community owners with the opportunity to create a space for their members to interact in on a daily basis.
Using Chatwee, you can:
- Welcome new members to the community
- Turn lurkers into active participants
- Help members develop deeper connections
- Encourage more interaction from users
- Create a reason for members to keep frequenting the community
Now let’s have a closer look at how Chatwee can help you drive community engagement and growth with its features.
- Welcome message
The welcome message is displayed at the bottom of the chat room, right below the text input area, where the user types their message.
Its content is customizable, you can enter your own text there. This feature is a good way to say hello to the community members joining the chat rooms for the first time. For many of them, this may be the first touchpoint with your organization.
Welcoming new members, even in such a seemingly trivial way, will make them feel at home, appreciated and encourage involvement from the get go.
A few quick words of encouragement to ensure them that they joined the right space will go a long way when trying to boost community engagement.
TIP: Consider a welcome message which directs the newly arrived to a dedicated icebreaker room where they can introduce themselves.
- Private chats
One of the ways to boost community engagement in the long run assumes helping members to foster close relations between them. You can approach this by promoting one to one conversations – private chats.
Get admins involved to boost community engagement by prompting users to approach each other with courtesy and get to know one other better. Once they develop a network of ties, they’ll keep coming back to stay in touch with their new friends.
- Group chats
Group chats can help forge deeper connections between community members by serving as a sort of sub groups, another level to chat rooms available to all.
This Chatwee feature is somewhere in between public chat rooms and private chats. Group chat allows a selected group of users to hold deeper conversations away from the public eye and create a tight circle.
- Moderator role
A Chatwee moderator is a chat user with extra powers. Essentially, he can delete (or approve (if premoderation is enabled) messages and issue several types of bans.
To boost community engagement, you can announce that the most active (no spamming though!) users will be considered for the moderator role. This may be a way to incentivize participation in the daily community interactions.
TIP: Take a look at the Analytics in your Chatwee Dashboard to see the most active user.
- High message character limit
Now, this one’s special and admittedly may not apply to every single online community out there.
The interaction styles will differ across chat rooms, however, in some, longer posts with more meaning may actually be preferable to shorter snaps.
Chatwee’s single message limit of 6000 characters with spaces can contribute to increasing community engagement for example by encouraging members to tell stories evoking emotion and feedback.
- Image and file upload, gif reactions
Visual content rules, undoubtedly. Images get more engagement than other types of content across all social media platforms. The huge popularity of YouTube and Instagram is no surprise.
Chatwee allows users to not only text but also post images, animated gif reactions, and upload small files directly from their phones.
Sky’s the limit on how exactly you can use this feature to boost community engagement. Images can incite emotions, or tell a specific story. In case of brand communities, they can center on the product and / or its users. Essentially, the goal is to show real people, community members, and so deepen relations between them, but that’s just one example.
TIP: Consider running a photo contest with reaction voting.
- Message reactions
And speaking of reactions to chat messages, Chatwee offers a feature similar to what you may have seen and used on Facebook or LinkedIn.
It’s a simple affair with four options available. As already suggested, the feature can be used for voting in a contest, to show approval or disapproval of certain messages, or in any other way that may be applicable in your community.
Message reactions are a simple way to boost community engagement but you may have to take the initiative here, make users aware of them, and perhaps create conditions where it makes particular sense to use them.
Whether it’s a brand community or a niche site you’re building for personal purposes, it’s absolutely crucial to work on user engagement levels to develop emotional connections that will help the community thrive. That deeper connection is what people are looking for.
It’s not always about trying to sell. A successful community needs emotionally invested members first and foremost.
Chatwee provides you with plenty of options to boost community engagement with its features designed to create outstanding user experience.
The app has been built to be an open platform for expression, a members’ den.
If you’re worried about too much engagement (is that really a thing?), there are always powerful moderation options available in case you need to put a tighter grip on the discussion.
Use Chatwee to ask for feedback, set up Q&As, digital get togethers, brainstorms and debates. Get creative and you’ll see the community engagement rise.