At a high level, community operations is the strategy and process of ensuring that your online community best serves the needs of all members. It's a critical part of community management because it defines how to keep your community healthy, vibrant and growing over time. Community operations should be informed by data, with key metrics informing both strategies and goals.
At a high level, community operations is the strategy and process of ensuring that your online community best serves the needs of all members.
It’s an important part of community management—but it’s not just about strategy. Community operations is also about making sure that all aspects of member experience are running smoothly on a day-to-day basis.
The term “community operations” can be confusing because it does not refer to just one thing; rather, it refers to an entire portfolio of activities. At its core, though, there are two essential components: data and process.
Community Operations is like an extension of project management, but with a specific focus on communities. The goal of this department is to make sure that everything in your community runs smoothly and efficiently without any issues or problems.
The main focus here will be making sure that users don't have any issues when they're interacting with each other or progressing through their journey within your community.
To make good decisions about community operations, you need to know your members. To know them, you need to understand their needs and desires as well as their pain points and frustrations with the community.
You should also uncover what your members want to accomplish in your community—what they're most interested in doing and learning about on a regular basis. This will help you create compelling content that speaks directly to those goals (for example, if one of those goals is an entertaining debate about the best place for dinner on Saturday night, then creating a weekly dinner poll would be relevant).
In addition to knowing what drives each member's participation in your community, it's also important that you know how they’re getting involved: whether they're visiting frequently or only dropping by occasionally; whether they're actively engaged on social media; whether they're contributing content or just reading other people's posts; etcetera!
Data is the lifeblood of community operations. It’s how you understand your members, how you know what works and what doesn’t work, and it helps you set meaningful goals that are the right size for your organization to achieve.
Data also helps evaluate success at the end of the day: Defining goals and measuring their success. Learning from a campaign or event. In other words, data is key to helping you understand if you succeeded or failed with our community efforts.
It's a simple concept: diversity is good. When you make your community more diverse, you end up with stronger communities.
Diversity makes your community more resilient—it can help in times of change or crisis. It also helps people from different backgrounds understand each other better and makes your community feel safe, inviting and inclusive. When people feel like they belong in a space, they’re much more likely to engage and keep coming back.
Community operations can be a daunting task for community managers. It's a huge responsibility—you need to know your audience well, understand what they want, and keep them engaged. But with the right tools and strategies in place, you'll be able to run an online community that thrives.
In an upcoming post, we're going to dive into the types of community member profiles. Before you dig through these, it's important to understand the 5 stages of a community member....
You can now schedule direct messages to your community members using Burb!