The major problem with 99% of the online startup communities is that they don’t really ensure a safe and secure place for elites to share their knowledge and expertise with young entrepreneurs. Its pretty simple, You don’t feel like home.
As I started off with my Facebook group, getting initial users was not a big deal. This is when, I put my friends to use by adding them to the group as the first set of users. I also messaged few of my relevant friends about this new thing I was working on. They told me that they will contribute whenever required.(Yes, you guessed it correctly, they didn’t.)
Getting initial engagement is pretty tough as the reputation of a Facebook group is so bad that no one really cares to look at it.
I was getting close to zero engagement on Pushstart for the first 15 days. Then I adopted the following methodology to bring a dynamic change:
I personally interacted with the users who seemed to be a little bit excited about the community; the ones who were engaging with us. I talked to them about my vision and asked for their feedback. (Through the conversations I tried to figure out why were they getting engaged and what could be done to retain them.)
I curated a list of over 100 relevant potential users among Pushstart’s member list and sent each one of them a personal message.
Then I talked with them and tried to figure out why they were not getting engaged.
“Keep the conversations healthy and friendly while interacting with people. You want them, they don’t. The major problem with any online community is that no one wants to be the first ones to contribute. They know they won’t get anything: neither traction nor engagement.”