So - you've now found the perfect name for your community and have chosen a URL that sounds great. Now what? It seems a bit of a big step from finishing setting up your Community to actually getting it to grow. Here are a few ways I've seen some founders on Lunch take off with their Communities. Feel free to try some or all of them out for yourself, and share anything you've seen that has worked for you.
5 Ways to Start Marketing Your Lunch Community
1.) Invite existing members - Prior to Lunch's launch of Communities, members contributed reviews on their favorite things and interests without having a way to organize them the way you can now. By sending an invite to members who have written on topics that are in your Community, you can welcome in their reviews and provide them with a better space to contribute their thoughts. Aside from looking through topics that are in your Community, you can also look through the tags that are related to the things your Community focuses on and see who may be actively contributing there.
2.) Use your blog - If you have a blog or website, you can display one of Lunch's widgets on your site. These are helpful since they allow members to view the latest activity of your community right on your page and can click through to join or check it out. If you have or are part of a blogroll, you can reach out to fellow bloggers and let them know about your Lunch community and how you all can contribute your opinions on the same topic in one central place. You might also want to ask blogger friends to place a link to your Lunch community on their blogroll.
3.) Include Lunch in your profiles - Many people forget updating their various social media profiles when thinking of how to promote something they're working on or a part of. This is everything from the "Website" field you fill in on facebook, to the links your provide on your Google profile to even an e-mail signature if you frequently e-mail people who would be part of your Community. Talk about your community in your profiles on Yelp, Amazon, Digg, Goodreads, etc. Take a look at all the places people can learn more about you, and drop in a link to your Community to Lunch.
4.) Create a Twitter list - Instead of your ordinary Follow Friday, try creating a Twitter list instead in your Community and include people who would find your Community interesting and compelling. You can catch their attention with the tweet that goes out to them saying they were included on your list. They can RT your shoutout, click through to see what your Community is all about or simply thank you for the mention. Either way, it's a great way to engage people in your space who would find your Community useful.
5.) Find members on Facebook - Often times, you can find Facebook pages or groups that relate to the topic your Community is about. While you can create your own, you can try to see who may be interested in the existing groups by joining a few of them and posting comments on the main page wall or replying to existing conversations. After getting a feel for who is active in the group, send them a message with a link or post straight to the wall with content from your Community. This can really help show how helpful the type of reviews are to Facebook members who are looking for more information.
These are some of the quick and easy ways to getting started on getting members in your Lunch community. I'm sure there are other ways and even better ideas, and I'd love to hear them too. I'm definitely going to be following this topic to see how everybody gets their Communities up and running!
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Angelo Ignacio (angelodignacio)
I'm a Filipino-American living life as a post undergrad making a start here in beautiful Los Angeles. I love the weather and diversity here and enjoy everything this city has to offer. I'm excited to … more
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Lunch Community Founders can market their communities in a variety of ways including enabling a Twitter feed, setting up a Facebook fan page, reaching out to other social networks, or even reaching out within the Lunch community. This topic is to discuss what methods have worked, or haven't worked for you, and to give suggestions to your fellow Community Founders.