So you’ve found a great social community solution for your association. Now you just need for your members to use it. Sometimes that can be a struggle.

But not to worry! We’ve got 4 tips to help you breathe some life into your online member community.

1. Select engagement ambassadors

In order to get your social community up and running, consider selecting a few people from within your organization to act as engagement ambassadors. These individuals should post several times per day within your social community and seed various questions to get members talking. Using engagement ambassadors to populate your social community will create a lively vibe to entice hesitant members.

2. Offer exclusive content

One of the best ways to attract people to your organization’s social community is by offering up content that can’t be accessed anywhere else. This could include in-depth eBooks, recorded webinars, or even a few short videos. Whatever it is though, make sure it’s valuable and reinforces your social community’s overall purpose.

3. Position your social community as part of the member experience

This is an important step that many associations often overlook. Your social community should be an extension of your organization’s overall value proposition. When a new member joins your organization, make it a point to introduce your social community as part of the the new member onboarding process. The more emphasis you place on it, the more likely members are to follow suit.

4. Reward members for contributions

Getting members to talk to each other is a real win. So when one of your members contributes to your organization’s social community, especially for the first time, it’s important to reward them. Now this could be something as simple as a “Thanks for joining in!” or it could mean sending them a free t-shirt or a discount code on your next event. Either way, it’s important to acknowledge your active and engaged members.

It’s important to keep in mind that building any kind of community takes time and persistence. But the benefits are worth it! Connected members are more likely to actively participate in your organization and studies have shown that they renew at higher rates.

By taking a few of these tips and putting them into practice, you’ll be well on your way to nurturing your own vibrant community.