How are you building loyalty?
How are you building loyalty?
The following is a republished edition of GroundSourced, a weekly newsletter from GroundSource on listening and community engagement. It features successful community engagement efforts, highlights missed opportunities for listening, and offers strategies that help you engage and listen to your community. You can subscribe to GroundSourced here.
What's your loyalty-building strategy? What platforms are you using? How are you measuring success?
I'm not talking about the destructive kind of loyalty. I'm referring to the loyalty that healthy relationships are built on. The sort of thing you inspire by being trustworthy, useful, and responsive. In other words: by listening.
It's a process that's often spearheaded by technology. The platform creates the channel and you cultivate it. And that's what we've discovered about GroundSource. We used to think of ourselves as a messaging provider. But instead, what we've learned from examples like these is that GroundSource is a place to bring folks you want to build loyalty with. Both their loyalty to you but, more critically, your loyalty to them.
That's because loyalty is about supporting one another. And if your organization is really listening, you don't need to feel unsure about asking your community to support you through continued participation or financial contribution.
That's what loyal relationships look like. And there's more about building loyalty in this week's features. If they spark an idea, schedule a call with us to discuss how GroundSource can support you.
Finally, don't forget we're always eager to hear about what you'd like to see in GroundSourced.
More than Eyeballs: How Journalism Can Benefit from Audience Engagement
Writing for Global Investigative Journalism Network, Membership Puzzle Project's Emily Goligoski outlined how engagement can play a role in sustainability and innovation.
"Learning about the needs of the most loyal 1 to 10% of a site’s user base can help us develop insights and designs that better serve 90 to 99% of other prospective users. Think of core users as your most extreme fans and those most likely to want to engage in the process of co-creating your work. They have a habit of using your products (as measured in return visits, regular time and money spent, and number of news products tried and shared). They demonstrate a conviction that you’re creating something useful and distinct. It’s the difference between being a traveler and being a tourist."
Emily suggests getting started with research and then involving your community in your work before you can reach a new plane of existence where engagement becomes "revenue-generating and money-saving."
Read more from Emily Goligoski at the Global Investigative Journalism Network here.
How Wired’s Multiplatform Strategy Is Increasing Engagement and Revenue
We're not all backed by Conde Nast but there's still plenty to learn from the success of highly resourced news and media organizations. Wired launched its paywall in 2018 and has found that loyalty-building news products – in their case, email newsletters – are driving seven times more subscribers than their other content.
And GroundSource customers can back up this approach: The Philly Inquirerfound folks clicking through their GroundSource conversations stayed on the site twice as long, visited more pages, and bounced less than other mobile visitors.
Here is Wired's director of audience development, Indu Chandrasekhar, on why loyalty-driving news product are more valuable from this interview with Kayleigh Barber in Folio:
"And though the [email newsletters are] a small contributor to overall site traffic, she says the value of newsletters is the loyal audience they create. “Odds are, if you read and engage with our newsletters, you’re much more aware of everything that Wired does. But if you only follow us on Facebook or Twitter, those platforms show that the average user only sees 5-10 percent of your posts.”"
But to get to 100,000 subscribers, Wired needed to know what their audience was about and find a platform that helps them build loyalty.
Read more from Kayleigh Barber in Folio here.
More ways to build loyalty
Trusting News, a project from Reynolds Journalism Institute and American Press Association
Should you design for addiction or for loyalty?, by Michelle Manafy for Nieman Lab
The best ways to build audience and relevance by listening to and engaging your community, by Mónica Guzmán for American Press Institute
Guide to audience revenue and engagement, by Elizabeth Hansen and Emily Goligoski for Tow Center for Digital Journalism
Quick tips for building audience and loyalty, from News Revenue Hub