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For all you Jive-x customers, just wanted to remind you we have a webcast tomorrow featuring Sr. SEO Strategist Anne Bluntschli.  (It will also be recorded and I'll do a blog post with some of the highlights.)


Customers can sign up here: Webinar: Talking with Product: SEO

About a month ago, I wrote Ideas for Instructure, which described our process at a high level.  After speaking with Deepti Patibandla about our process and some of our specific challenges I thought I'd share a more step-by-step description of our process now and some the things we'd like to do in the future.


We provide Canvas LMS as software as a service.  Canvas is cloud based, agile, and changes in production every three weeks.  Anyone in the world with a Canvas login (including free users) can come to our community and suggest an idea for improving Canvas.  Once a month, all the ideas that are not duplicates or something that hasn't already been voted on and responded to by our product team, opens for vote.  Any idea that gets a net 100 votes moves into a stage where our Product Managers will formally respond to it.  Sometimes they say, yes, this thing is already in development.  Sometimes they say, no, we won't build it and here is why.  Most often they say, that they like the idea and will file it away for when we refactor that area of the product.   Any idea that is open for vote for three months without getting 100 net positive votes is archived.  People can resubmit ideas that get archived for lack of votes but their vote count starts fresh for the next voting round.  Some times an idea's popularity will increase over time.  You can learn more about our process, if you are interested, at:

  1. What is the feature development process for Canvas?
  2. How does the voting process work for feature ideas?
  3. do I create a new feature idea?


Some of our challenges:

  1. Its complicated for us -
    1. we do a lot of manual opening and closing of idea voting, tagging by user role, new vs modify and product area. 
    2. Many newly submitted ideas are not complete or are duplicates
    3. Irrelevant ideas create clutter and noise

  2. Its complicated for users who, if they want to stay current, must read 100s of ideas each month and search across more than 3700 ideas


Ideation Features we would love to have:

  1. Ability to affect (open/close) cohorts of ideas all together
  2. Idea brackets or voting rounds - everyone gets one vote on all ideas and then in round two, gets to vote again on only the top however many ideas
  3. Vote allowance - one user can only vote so many times in a month for example
  4. Point system - each idea gets a point value and a given user can 'spend' a given allowance of points
  5. Topic related discussions and ideas - for instance we could say that we are getting ready to refactor a certain area of the product and anyone can submit discussions or ideas related to that area.  There could be a description of the area with the top ideas and discussions related to it that could auto sort by vote count or comment totals scrolling down below the description.
  6. Non-global idea stages - let us use ideas differently in different spaces.

Deanna Belle Cisco's Social Media Program Manager, and Keith Conley, Bunchball's Director of Analytics & Insight gave a fantastic presentation at JiveWorld16: "Advanced Gamification to Drive Engagement and Business Outcomes"

If you missed the session, or would like a refresher, be sure to join our upcoming webinar on April 14. Deanna and Keith will share their first-hand account of how Cisco's development community has evolved since it's migration to Jive 2 years ago — and learn which engagement strategies worked and what insights they have today, including:

  • Best practices for motivating initial adoption and ongoing community engagement
  • Leveraging data and analytics to understand community program health and drive engagement and measure business impact
  • Recommendations for correlating the business value of community performance

Register here.

Good afternoon all,

I have seen lots of discussion lately about growing a community and wanted to share a post I wrote after a #Hootchat tweetchat - I hope you find it helpful.  #Hootchat happens every Thursday 3pm EST by the way - hope to see you there. 


Q1: What are the first steps to building a new online community

  • Know why you are building the community: customer service, engagement, marketing
  • Determine the best platform: Paid: @JiveSoftware or @LithiumTech Free: LinkedIn or G+


Q2: What are some strong brands with online communities


Q3: What are common mistakes when trying to grow your online community?

  • Trying to grow too big too fast & prioritizing member numbers over engagement
  • Not having a clear definition of success
  • Putting up a community without a Community Manager


Q4: What are ways you can engage your online community offline?

  • Engage via: private chat, email, or my old school method… the phone & have an actual conversation
  • WebEx conferences with community members – Google Hangouts or Skype work too
  • Some platforms allow private groups – create one and invite your MVP / power users


Q5: How does growing your online community help build brand credibility?

  • The more conversations you have, the more loyal your customer, the more loyal – the more they talk about you
  • Along with credibility, you have a great customer service and solutions place as peers trust each other
  • Support communities are AWESOME customer service centers: trusted, fast, and low-cost


Q6: How do you identify potential advocates and ambassadors from your online community?

  • Analytics: How often they come, how many answers they provide, answers marked correct by others
  • What is the “tone” of their conversations? How do they engage other members?
  • Get into your community and participate


Q7: What are some non-traditional ways to grow your online community?

  • Start with a tweetchat, build a list, slowly invite people from the list into the community
  • No matter how you find and invite – DO IT SLOWLY – set up the space, be ready for volume, have content
  • NEVER invite ppl to an empty room – have a team to greet & respond as well as content for them to consume


Q8: What is one thing you can do right now to start growing your online community?

  • Know WHY you are building it
  • Have customer-centric content
  • Participate & respond to questions


I look forward to your comments and feedback.




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