One important tactic of managing community is to engage and respond to your community members in a valuable manner. When replying to community posts in communities I manage, I leverage the following guidelines:
- Respond within 24 hours
- Be kind
- Put yourself in their shoes
- Add some type of value, especially before you ask anything of them
Address the person by name
Hello, _______, …..
Introduce them to fellow community members that can provide value
Helping them build their network is a huge value add that will build trust with them
Link to other applicable threads, blog content or documentation that will help
Someone else is bound to find this post in search results, so make sure the answer is somewhere that is being updated and will be available for years to come.
Solve their problem
Solve the problem. If you do not have the answer, tag someone into the conversation that does. Review their history, be sure you are not sending solutions they have already tried.
CTA — Ask for an update
You want this conversation to continue because you want them to come back to your community. Ask for an update or leave a CTA of some kind to further their engagement.
Shout out to Richard Millington from Fever Bee who presented a session on similar content and a great example, inspiring me to begin leveraging these guidelines years ago. They've been incredibly valuable!