Organic Growth in Your Community


greentom.jpgWorking over the weekend in my garden has me thinking about the best way to grow a successful community.  Just as my tomato plants need the right mixture of time, water and healthy organic soil amendments so too does a community need the right organization and structure.


One of the classic pitfalls in growing a new community is not allowing it to grow naturally.  We typically see this expressed as a desire to split the community into many small, highly focused discussions that mirror the organization or product structure in some way.  When this happens, the community fails to thrive because the activity isn't concentrated and

new members aren't sufficiently confident that their posts will be answered and so they look to other channels. 



By concentrating activity in fewer boards, your community has a chance to grow more organically, and eventually map to different product lines.  We recommend that you give this process time and that each board has a minimum of 5-10 posts per board per day.  In fact, we recommend that a board have an established pattern of about 40 posts per day before it is split into two separate boards.


When your community is allowed to grow organically, it will have an opportunity to thrive and gather enough critical mass to be self sustaining over time.  When this is done properly you will be able harvest a bounty of benefits from your community.


1 Comment

I love this metaphor Erik!


Definitely "starting small" is the right way to go with your structure - then get as many folks in to participate as you can and let their content show you the right ways to grow over time.


Those vegetables look delicious by the way!


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