I know, New Years has come and gone, but we don't have to restrict our thoughts about goals and resolutions to a one-week period in January.
Just as you probably have personal and career goals, your online community should have big goals as well.
Before you start glazing over, I'm not talking about analytics goals. Put away that spreadsheet, bucko. I'm talking about "why we exist" goals.
Get Your Goal Ideas Flowing
- If your community is a hobby site, and it exists to facilitate the passion of your members for a particular niche, perhaps your goal might be to hold an in-person event for the first time.
- If your community exists to offer customer support, how about a goal of achieving visible delight (measured by happy Tweets, kudo posts)?
- For a community of brand fans, a goal might be to get big media attention for the brand via a grass roots, guerrilla style campaign.
- An online community of fitness junkies might decide to add up all of their pounds lost over the year and try to reach a big number together.
- A medical or wellness community might try to sponsor 10 blood drives.
Community Members Want to be Part of Something Important
The key is to make the goal public, achievable, and aspirational. When a group of people come together to support a specific action, it can solidify and motivate everyone. It helps member retention, activity levels, and social identification---"we're building something together" rather than "I sometimes hang out here."
So if you're just looking to achieve 1000 members in your community, you're missing the boat. Get grandiose, get member involvement, and get climbing.
What are your community goals?