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Engaging With Your Community Makes Sense




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What does community mean?


The community I am talking about is exactly what you know it is – a group of people connected by many virtues such as their physical location, their interests, their religion, their shared experience. You are no doubt part of many communities – your local GAA club, a business networking group, or maybe a worldwide group of Paddy Reillys.

And what has this got to do with your business?


Well there is probably a community of people that gather (knowingly or not) purely for your business, for you. They are there, waiting, so why wouldn’t you engage with them?

They could be customers, fans, members or others connected for some crazy reason to your business. And we have now learned that it makes business sense to connect with these people and allow them to connect with one another.

What do you get?


There are many reasons why this is important which I will delve into more in later posts. Amongst the benefits that you can start achieving today is cheap marketing, real-time feedback on your products, easier and more meaningful customer service, effective market research and a powerful way to deepen the meaning of your brand.
Of course these are your benefits. The trick to being in a position that you can expect such amazing benefits is actually to disregard your expectations of getting something. It is about giving. Giving real value to those who are listening to you. And being the type of voice that a community will listen to and trust. Earn this and your community will not mind playing a part in the crazy thing you are trying to do.

So I am afraid this is going to be honest, direct marketing. The Internet has changed the rules – you are now in the open, or blocked behind a wall.

In my coming posts I intend to help you engage with your community. We will be hitting on plenty of topics that could be deemed ‘social media’, but please don’t be put off by that. We will be doing something much more real, basic and human. And we are all experts in that, aren’t we?

Next up, I will help you identify who your community is, who is in it and where they are.

I am part of a community that listens to these people. They might help you too:

Seth Godin
Gary Vaynerchuck
Guy Kawasaki

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The Author:

Paul McAvinchey (@YABOYA) is from YABOYA Media, a niche online publishing startup. YABOYA Media operates the Diddlyi group of web properties that includes a popular Social Network, a growing Facebook and Twitter presence and an Irish Web Award nominated Online Magazine. Paul is available at www.YABOYA.com for speaking events and consultancy work. http://www.yaboya.com

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