If you want to strengthen your brand, you should definitely build a brand community. A brand community basically refers to your loyal customers and they are an important part of your brand. Building a solid online community will have a positive impact on the growth of your brand. Similarly, the members of your brand community also benefit from this bond because you can offer special discounts, events, and more.
In this article, you will find all the necessary information about the brand community and how to build one. Let’s get started!
What is brand community?
Brand community means a group of customers who has a strong connection that is beyond purchasing to a brand. Their relationship with a brand is based on loyalty and they are emotionally invested. They not only purchase the brand’s product but also tell about their experiences to their family and friends.
Worth to note, that brand community is different from brand awareness. In other words, purchasing your brand products doesn’t necessarily mean that the person becomes a part of an engaged community. Being aware of the brand is not enough to build a brand community. So, you should look for an emotional connection.
When your customers follow your brand on social media, engage with the content you create, share it with others, and obviously, purchase your products, that means you have built a brand community. This shows that an online platform come in handy to build such a community.
So now you know what a brand community is, let’s see its importance to your brand.
Why is brand community important?
Building a brand community is important due to several reasons. Let’s see 5 of its benefits:
1. Increases brand loyalty
Nine out of 10 people say that they buy from companies they follow on social media, who are considered loyal customers. Building a brand community, in this sense, becomes highly significant because brands can engage with their customers through social media.
So, being on social networks and providing accessibility lead to increasing brand loyalty by increasing brand awareness. You are getting more support from your customers which brings growth in return.
2. Stronger brand image
By connecting with your customers, you make them feel heard and valued. This will positively affect your brand image. Your customers will appreciate your efforts and will have an excellent customer experience. This will all strengthen your brand image.
3. Better communication with a targeted audience
Brand communication delivered on social media is more successful than paid advertising at 45 percent, meaning that engaging with customers is recognized and valued by customers. Building a brand community allows you to communicate with your customers in a better and quicker way since almost everyone is using online social platforms.
A good brand community boosts your communication and helps you to receive feedback, and therefore understand what your customers need that you can improve and provide. It is very beneficial to build a platform or portal, where you can ask your customers about their opinion, feedback, and suggestions. This will not only help you to make informed decisions but also show your customers that you value their opinions. So, it is a great way to gather insights into your customers.
4. Generating more creative ideas for your brand
Your brand community will be a place where you can engage with them and everyone can share their ideas. By observing your customers’ behavior, you can create better strategies and come up with more creative ideas as the next step. You will be more aware of your customer’s liking, and their opinions on your products and services.
5. Integrated advertising
A brand community will not only purchase your products but also will share with the world what was their experience with your brand. When you see a group of Harley-Davidson riders, you would know that they ride Harley-Davidson from afar. The better you treat your brand community, the more likely they are to share information, promotional material, and positive reviews about your products and services. And they do that for free! So your customers will become a built-in advertising mechanism for your brand.
How to build a brand community?
Building a brand community is probably easier than you think. We listed 4 essential steps for you to get started:
1. Define your brand
When you are defining your brand, you need to go beyond just thinking about your products and services. You need to think about your brand mission, values, personality, and priorities.
Besides, thinking about your target audience is important, too. By answering all of these questions, you will easily define your brand. After this step, you need to add another question: What is my brand trying to achieve?
2. Set your brand goals
To succeed, you need to have goals and plans in your mind. Having goals will guide you to make on-point decisions. Moreover, people are more likely to make purchase decisions on beliefs nowadays. Thus, if you set your brand goals clearly, you will organically form your community. You can answer these:
- What is the philosophy of my brand?
- Why do I need to form a brand community?
- What am I going to do for keeping my community engaged?
- What will be the indicators of the success of my brand community?
- What do I want to track in my brand community?
- How will my brand community goals will be in line with my brand goals?
3. Choose a working community platform
After answering all the important questions, now you need to choose a platform for your community. You need to decide how you want to engage your community. There are several platforms that you can opt for:
Social media platforms
You can engage with your customers through social media. You can create Facebook groups, Instagram hashtags, and tweets on Twitter to increase brand community engagement. Social media platforms will not only allow you to create content to get attention but also allow you to communicate with your community.
Affiliate programs and rewards
Affiliate programs are another great way to engage with your community. By creating a program that allows customers to receive a payout for each person they refer, you’re building a bigger and better community.
Rewards are also great for connecting with your community. You can see Starbucks as a great example. Whenever you make a purchase by using the Starbucks app, you gain a star. When you reach an adequate amount of stars, you get a free drink. It is great motivation!
Just like some brands, you can choose community software to build and engage with your brand community. There are so many options out there. Raklet is a great all-in-one community platform that has everything you need and more.
Raklet offers extensive features for better community engagement. You can build online or in-person events, collect payments, set up fundraisers, create different discussion boards where your customers can share ideas, enable the private messaging feature, or more – the sky’s the limit when it comes to engaging your members. You can also increase member engagement through digital membership cards by showing them that they are unique.
If you need more, you can check out our extensive and useful integrations. You can focus on your brand while we take care of other tasks for you.
If you like to learn more about Raklet, you can schedule your demo and talk to our specialists.
4. Engage with your community on a regular basis
Your community needs reasons to stay with your brand. Based on the platform you use, you should engage with them regularly. Keep informing them about new products and updates, conduct surveys, do Q&A sessions, start discussion forums, and more! Just be sure that you are keeping their interest in your brand.
And that’s it!
Now you know what is a brand community, its benefits, and how to build one. You can start building your community and strengthen your brand identity!
If you like to read more about communities, you can check these posts from our blog: