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We'll be launching HubSpot and our external community shortly. We decided on mapping out our customer's life cycle and the several personas that flows through that life cycle. Then, the idea is to send external messaging to our customers that's persona-based. Each persona will map to a specific discussion group in our community or to a category that has a list of support threads. We believe our customers will take the time to read emails that's persona-based and related to their role, more so than a general newsletter. The newsletter may become a weekly summary of the persona emails we send out so all of customers still have insight to other sectors of our org.
Be happy to talk more offline. I'd also love to learn how you currently use HubSpot.
We also have a newsletter that is getting good click rates and open rates but no real impact seen on engagement. I still feel it has value to help to promote the valuable content on our site and re-inforce the value of the technical information shared on there. We are looking at a redesign of the newsletter at the moment so I will see how this goes.
In terms of increasing engagement the most impact I have seen is with focussing on onboarding new customers. In our scenario this means some onboarding emails to customers who have just purchased our software pointing out what the site is, how to get registered and giving them links to useful information to help them get started with the products they've purchased.
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Karen, I'm curious.. Is your digest still turned on?
We have done something similar with the on-boarding process. We are sending out welcome emails that direct them to 1) update their profile 2) Join in on our main conversation space 3)Check out our content library.
We have been working on an engagement campaign which teases different features and highlights content from our instance. I have yet to launch it although it's been somewhat ready for months. This campaign might be the filler for the gap I've created by turning off the digest. Seems a newsletter is not quite enough... but I've attach a screenshot below. Always happy to learn what others are doing.
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Newsletters are a great way to remind members what they might have missed! Especially for "external" communities where you're competing for member attention and need to give them a reason to remember to come back to get value. Of course you need to balance this approach and frequency so as not to appear as being spammy.
Consider subject headlines for your newsletter that address problems at the outset like "Is your exec challenging you to prove the ROI of your community? Learn 3 metrics that matter" or something like that. You may have other articles to share, but a catchy headline that promises it will solve a problem will go a long way!
Chris Ewald did a talk at JiveWorld on this very topic and the tools / techniques he used and the impact it had Advanced Engagement: Growing Your Community Beyond Registered Users and Page Views
Keep at it! You're doing it right if you're thinking about driving engagement!
Thank you, Claire! So truly appreciate your feedback here.
What span of time in between newsletters have you seen go over well with other communities?
Since posting this last one, I've changed things up quite a bit with more valuable and relevant content/ as well as with a new streamlined look and feel.
My concern is that engagement level hasn't made the kind of improvements that I would've liked to have seen at this point... another contributing factor could be the "barrier to entry" of not using a SSO, meaning that when the user clicks on the newsletter, they need to log in.. I'm wondering how many people get to the login page and X out of the page.. just some thoughts..