Creating Communities

A hot marketing topic is creating communities for customers and users.  Whether it is through a blog, social network or user group, communities allow people to connect with people of similar interests and share information amongst one another.

Currently, I am working on a project to create an Autodesk user group in the Twin Cities.

This project had me thinking about what it takes to create a a community?

At its core, communities are basically made up of the following things:

  • People
  • Communication
  • Resources
  • Gathering Space
  • Information
  • Rules (written or unwritten)

With these factors in mind, I think it’s essential for a group to have a web site or social network group to facilitate information sharing. Also, a web site can help attract new members.   

Rather than creating a website dedicated to the user group, I am thinking about using either Ning or Meetup.Ning Logo

Ning is great because you can post videos and pull videos from YouTube and Google. Also, Ning has
forums which would be good to facilitate discussions.Meetuplogo

Meetup is good because it has a calendar, it allows users to post files and it can host polls.

I’m leaning toward Meetup because it seems to facilitate offline activities more than Ning.

If you’ve used either Ning or Meetup and have a recommendation, let me know.

Also, if you’re an Autodesk user in the Twin Cities and are interested in joining a user group, send me an e-mail. If you have a friend that might be interested, feel free to let them know as well.

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