I noticed you captured the month of December. Can you chalk this up to the busy holiday season and school vacation for the reason of dropped activity? Did the same thing happen last December or has it been on a slide for the entire year?
We launched in July 2012 and the activity seemed to grown with the member adoption for about a month. Since then it has dropped off. I'm nervous that this trend will continue. January is a busy time for new enrollments so I'm hoping the participation will increase over the next few months. I just wanted to compare my results to others.
This shows August 1st 2012 - Jan 1st 2013
Are you doing any outbound marketing? Sort of a welcome message to new and/or returning students, highlighting the benefits of the community and the type of content it contains? Advertise it during every freshman orientation to get them involved early.
I definitely think making it competitive by introducing the gamification module will give activity a nice boost.
Do professors have a presence? I can see them leveraging to community to post the syllabus, course assignments, due date reminders, test schedules, having virtual office hours etc. Students could even carry on the conversation well after the class has end.
Do you have an advocacy program?
Just some thoughts
Yes, we are an online only school so we advertise the community to our students in many ways. Its the only place they can connect with others in their program as we offer asynchronous study. We are enabling SSO in a few weeks so all students will be generated a community account upon registration with the school so I know the overall number will go up. My concern is that the activity will not follow suit.
All instructors are available on the community to assist students with questions but not all post course content as the site is public. Our most successful space has a lot of instructor interaction, helpful documents, presentations and even participation grades are exclusively posted to the community space but I am seeing the activity drop there as well.
Our most active space:
its been very difficult to get the education dept on board with the community and away from email. We have community awards, lunch and learn sessions and several community "cheerleaders" With SSO being implemented we are going to add abotut 100k users so I'm hoping activity will increase once we get there. It could just be the holidays bringing it down. Thanks for your suggestions Dan!