Top 5 Online Community Building Ideas For Your Small Business

Last week I wrote about 3 brands that get marketing in the age of rapid change, which got me thinking of what small businesses can do to build a tribe. Here are the Top 5 ideas that came to mind.

Create real relationships not just numbers

Having 10 000 likes on your small Facebook Page and another 10 000 followers on Twitter looks impressive, but at times that’s all it is. Only impressive.

A small engaged audience is better than a large uninterested one.

True fans

Kevin Kelly’s famous 1000 True Fans gives some great insights into how infinite niches have made it possible for creators, and in my view, what you think is your little startup to gain market breakthrough.

How many supporters, fans and truly interested supporters do you need to reach tipping point? It may be less than you think.

Be consistent

One of the pitfalls of many brands, both large and small, once they start building relationships and generating interest – they lack consistency. Create a plan of what you’ll talk about and engage your audience.

 No, it’s not all about selling and inundating your community with an endless daily pitch of why you’re awesome. They already think you are; they wouldn’t be listening if they didn’t think so.

What is your one thing? What is your product or service associated with that your audience are interested in? Lifestyle, travel and information are some ideas.

Be human

What your business does is definitely interesting, more so, to you. Would you still want to know about what you do; if you were someone else? If the answer is ‘no’, then you are more like to bore your would-be fans.

Have some personality and think about what your customers would want to talk about. You’ll very quickly find that it’s not about your business, but things that benefit them. Market your company in a way that positions you as the go to place.


If you are on Twitter, then you probably follow some of your favourite brands and some celebrities who never respond to you. Once you have created relationships, maintain them through engagement and being on the pulse of what your community wants.

What are your Top 5 audience engagement ideas?

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Image by: David Davies on Flickr


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