Community Management Webinar Series (3/5) - What is a Community Management Platform?

We held the third program of our community management webinar series on Thursday, May 12, 2022. In the program we held with community management and strategy consultant İlker Akansel and Octo founder Özer Akıncı, we talked about the definition, features, and usage areas of the community management platforms.

What is a community management platform?

Community management platform helps communities manage communication among themselves. These platforms are available to brands, associations, foundations, businesses, or any community. It provides benefits such as managing, supporting, and interacting with the community by providing a set of tools that facilitate and centralize community management activities.

What should be the key components of the community management platform?

Profile Layer: It is the area where the members of the community can introduce themselves and add different features such as abilities, hobbies, interests in addition to their basic personal information.

Sharing Layer: It is the area where community members can share what they want to do, their excitement, and their content with other community members.

Interaction: It is the area where the members of the community can communicate with each other.

Measurement and Management: The area where proactive actions are taken, and the community is managed by using powerful reporting features and focusing on key metrics.

Is it possible to manage a community with Facebook or other social networks?

It is possible to manage a community with Facebook or other social networks, but these networks do not provide a detailed area for you to manage conversations (interaction, communication), store statistics (user activity, community metrics, interaction statistics, reports, etc.) or create groups. Facebook or other social networks are designed for different purposes. Although the purposes in these social networks partially overlap with those of community management platforms, it is not possible to conduct a complete community management with Facebook and similar networks.

What are the advantages of the community management platform?

With the development of technology, we see software specialized in its own vertical such as Salesforce for sales and ERP for human resources. Similar to these areas, the community manager should have his own software to manage the community in the best way, measure big data, create community strategies, provide communication and increase interaction. Since community management platforms are systems prepared by considering the basic components of community management, it is possible for you to manage your community more effectively and easily. By using these tools, you fully unlock the value and power of your community, which we talked about a lot in our webinar series.

What criteria should we pay attention to when choosing a community management platform?

1) Member Experience: Members should be able to use the platform easily and quickly.

2) Admin Experience: Like users, admins should be able to use the platform effectively. Ease of use of dashboards and quick submission of reports are important.

3) Content Features: The more flexible and wide-ranging content features are for the purposes of the community, the better the experience is provided.

4) User-Friendly: Interfaces should be easily adaptable and simple designed. Designing the interfaces similar to the interfaces that everyone uses and is familiar with in their daily life will also reduce the learning curve.

5) Compatibility with existing infrastructure: If there is a platform you are already using or if you are using different applications for your community, it must be integrated with the platform you will use. If your existing infrastructure and the platform you will use are compatible, you can offer a more efficient value proposition for the community. In this respect, attention should be paid to the integration capability of the community management platform via APIs.

6) Cost: The costs of community management platforms are spread over a wide range. Therefore, it is important to choose the most suitable platform for your needs and pay attention to the benefit/cost ratio.

What to do after purchasing the community management platform?

Before start using the platform, it must be ready for your community. You can start by making a small model of your community first and making sure it overlaps with the platform. With a small community model, you can plan your community's needs, communication, interaction, and tailor the platform to your needs. For additional needs that may arise, you can contact your platform provider and request additional development.

Should community management platforms be on the web or mobile?

One of the points we need to look at is the penetration ratios. When we look at the trend in the world, we can see that mobile usage has increased incredibly in recent years. It is obvious that everyone has one or more phone. It is also useful to pay attention to the profile of your own community when evaluating these metrics. Your community's target audience, persona, and where they would like to access the platform need to be considered.

You can watch the entire program via this link and learn the other details of community management platforms. Our webinar series will continue with its fourth program on the subject of "Differences between social media and community management" on June 16, 2022 at 20:00. Click here to register for the fourth program.

See you on June 16 👋🏻