20 Community tips from the Twitterversity

Last week Tom De Ruyck was one of the visiting professors at the Market Research Twitterversity. His 20 tips for running a community were immensely popular according to the organization. We listed them below!

  1. Think before you act: do you need a short forum or an ongoing community? Are you able to manage a LT one?
  2. ‘Research Communities’ are qualitative of nature. Quantitative questions? Start an ‘Online Research Panel’!
  3. Remember: Research Communities are never representative! They are a qualitative tool and specific profiles participate.
  4. Work with participants that show identification with your brand and/or the research topic! They are the best…
  5. Work with 150 people max: our scientific research shows that more members will not deliver you extra insights.
  6. Be happy with 30 answers on a topic. We know that the number of new arguments in a post saturates after 30.
  7. It’s an illusion to think that all participants will answer all questions. Would you do?
  8. Right number of people + right type of participants is NOT a community yet. You have to build a community!
  9. Parts of the briefing: who is the client? goal of the project? incentives? when will the company give feedback?
  10. Have a conversation guide ready before you start. Even if it’s a community of 3 month or a year… Be proactive!
  11. Be sure that you have a gatekeeper/ambassador of the project @ client side, taking care of input and feedback.
  12. Co-create the conversation guide with the gatekeeper and internal clients. Make sure it’s chucked into themes.
  13. Conversation guide can consist of: polls, qualitative questions, short tasks, uploading pictures, … Make it fun.
  14. Try to have different ‘virtual rooms’ in your community: giving feedback to your stimuli vs. unsolicited feedback.
  15. Give part of the community back to the members: their ‘room’! It’s the social glue of your community.
  16. Last but not least: make sure you have a moderator with the ‘C-factor‘! 🙂
  17. Use gaming elements in your community to keep members engaged: expert statuses, badges, random acts of kindness.
  18. Present your results in an engaging way: workshop, infographic, short movie, news website (INFOTAINMENT)
  19. Keep in mind that quantitative validation of insights can be good. Remember: communities are not representative.
  20. Enjoy it! Have fun! 🙂 ‘Research Communities’ are just great to do, as a researcher, a client AND a participant!

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