Microsoft recently acquired LinkedIn, where many small businesses relied heavily on this site to connect and communicate with their customers. The times are changing though, and the current environment reflects a push away from the support that business owners were used to receiving from LinkedIn. At first blush, this might seem like a bad thing, but actually its just the push business owners needed to create their own board, experience and to be able to interact with not only their customers, but to control content and the message received. Your message should focus on what your customers want, it should be helpful, clean line, not hard to find, and not overly marketed. It should be helpful to your customers and you will build a winning community experience.

Key Takeaways:

  • For a better online community experience, don’t squat on another site’s territory. It’s much better to own the site and the content yourself.
  • Don’t let your community be all about data. Encourage exchange with a moderator, so your site has a face.
  • As tools for your community, Use SEO and advertising very selectively, by truly honing in on who it is you want to engage.

“Take some time to drill down into your company’s most popular search terms to figure out what people are looking for most often. That will help guide your content, and it will directly inform your content strategy, ultimately helping drive your business goals.”