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18 Rules of Community Engagement: A Guide for Building Relationships and Connecting With Customers Online Paperback – May 15, 2009
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From the Back Cover
Angela Connor is the Managing Editor of User-Generated Content at WRAL.com and has help grow the firm's community to more than 11,000 members in 18 months. She is a multimedia journalist who has worked in broadcast, print and online news at television stations and newspapers.
"Angela's book is just as important for personal brands as it is for companies. In this new world of work, everybody must understand how to facilitate and grow a community, in order to achieve maximum success. Angela's book will guide you to community manager nirvana!"
Dan Schawbel, Author or 'Me 2.0'
"Angela begins the pioneering task of setting the rules for online communities in this must-read book. Her sass, wit and sheer knowledge of this unknown frontier are great guides for anyone wanting to enter the online community space."
Maren Hogan, Principal, Red Branch Media
"Angela lays out some great points on community engagement with real life examples that give readers the how-to when implementing these strategies within their own business. Not to mention, it's all written in a simple to read manner."
Sonny Gill, Social Media Strategist, SonnyGill.com
"...how do we move from the old model of circulating the news to the new model of managing these social groups? Angela Connor provides a clear and concise map to follow, whether working from the corner office or a corner of a coffee shop."
Ron Sylvester, Interactive News Reporter, The Wichita Eagle/Kansas.com
About the Author
Angela Connor is the Managing Editor of User-Generated Content at WRAL.com. She launched and currently manages the top-rated news organization's first online community, GOLO which has grown to more than 11,000 members in 18 months. Angela is a multimedia journalist who has worked in broadcast, print and online news at television stations and newspapers in Cleveland, Tampa, West Palm Beach and Fort Lauderdale. She lives in Holly Springs, NC with her husband and two young daughters.
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Top customer reviews
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Reading though the book, I got a tangible sense of what I could do to manage an online community. I am reminded of the reality that this is real work that takes real time and without that - you have nothing. I appreciated Angela's advocacy for both alignment with an organizations goals for having a community and some emphasis on advisory from the members themselves. Although I'd appreciate more on the latter. The most influential section was that on recognizing and respecting the culture of the community you manage. Culture, as she mentions, is something that is in some ways out of your hands. You have to take the time to learn and study the community creating itself in front of you and let that inform your work. Many lessons transfer offline, but not many examples in the book emphasize the opportunity that exists offline for further connection and development.
The structure of the book into short sections make it an easy read. Occasionally the stories skip around, like on page 76, "I recently found myself torn about whether or not to ban a longtime member who had been pushing the envelope and testing the limits for months...Once he began publicly mocking the rules and posting blogs challenging my authority, I had no choice. He later came back using one of several profiles he'd created which were apparently for the sole purpose of creating chaos." We don't hear how the situation was managed after that. Online communities, unlike physical ones, create a strong opportunity for anonymity and new identities. This stands as an issue unresolved.
This was a good read that left me with a new level of intuition afterward. This speaks to the approachable nature of the book. I didn't feel an urge to take down notes like most books of this type but just read and absorb. As a offline community practitioner, its lessons serve well here too with a little bit of translation.
I'd recommend this book to anyone actively engaged in any online community setting either as a manager, designing, or as a top member looking to understand what they are working with. It's where we will all find ourselves someday anyways, right? We all need a better understanding that for the first time in a long time, you have to deal with individual people. Angela helps us do that.
Great excerpt on the 90-9-1 principle (pg. 11):
1. If you want to increase quantity of activity in your community, it's more effective to increase the total population who visit your site than to get current members to participate more (not that you shouldn't do both, but the former will typically be more effective than the latter).
2. If you want to increase the quality of activity in your community, focus your efforts on that 1% who contribute the most.
3. If you want to find out what the total reach is of your community, be sure to count the 90% or so who are spectators as well as the 10% who are posting.
I love how the structure of an online environment helps bubble down some of the essentials of any community. I will carry these three in my back pocket as solutions: (1) Add people (2) Cultivate your best (3) Keep track of those impacted by or are on the sidelines of the community.
creative community consultant
This book could easily have been a piece of propaganda arguing that all brands need an online community and that they offer nothing but huge benefits. Angela convinces you of the realities in this book, though. Besides repeatedly stating that communities take time to develop, she also covers some of the nastier sides of community building - abusive users. She'll tell you over and over again just how much hard work community building is, and how you need to have personality, tact, an amazingly thick skin and a strong work ethic. I couldn't agree more.
Here's what I love about Angela's book. It's not just her advice and experience you are getting. During the writing process, Angela openly canvassed the opinions of others involved in community management. For example, in the chapter about how to accept and respond to criticism, Angela tells you what she does and then tells you what others do. The result is a book that is richer and more valuable.
Angela's book isn't full of theories, facts and figures. It's not an academic work. It's just full of advice, backed up with examples. Her experience shines through.
Angela knows that community managers work differently - they have their own opinions as to what works and their communities are unique. Angela doesn't pretend that her book will make you an expert. She is honest - she simply tells you what has worked for her (and others) and offers you encouragement to go out and find what will work for your community.
Most recent customer reviews
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