Communities aren't communities without engagement. #lovepeoplemakemoney #community #buildingcommunity #solopreneur #businesssuccess #business

This is for members of my community :)  And members of other people's communities too because maybe they feel in similar ways.

I've hosted an online community since 2004. For 13 years it was a private forum right here on my site. For the last 14 months, it's been the Love People + Make Money Facebook Group.  I've also hosted live events for the last five years.

Whether the community forms virtually/digitally or in person – I see pure magic happen when people show up and engage with each other.

I know… ‘engage' is one of those annoyingly overused words – but I believe it fits.  

Engagement is so important to me, I've decided to trim away members who joined and never returned to post or reply to posts. I shared this decision with my community and received just the sort of participation I'm craving ;)

Interestingly, people who are are naturally plugged in and responsive said they're try to ‘do better' – and they don't need to LOL!

A few people who have been silent since joining piped up to say they want to stay – which is cool.  I'm inviting them to jump in to enjoy the full benefit of community.

What I found particularly interesting, a few people expressed ‘I love to come, read and learn – but I don't have time to engage.'  Honestly, these are the people I'm trying to call out.  We obviously share interest in building our businesses, but you're visiting, consuming the conversations and going away without reaction or remark – THAT bums me out.

I Want Your Engagement!

Imagine coming over to my place for a mastermind. If you showed up, sat in silence even though we ask for your input, then left without a word… only to repeat the same pattern every week – well, that'd just be weird!

I don't know anyone who would do that in person – but lots do it online.  The internet makes us all lurkers to some extent, right?  From my perspective though, it's still weird and it has an impact on me.

I'm watching my stats, checking to see what kinds of content draws the best engagement.  As my group grows and the number of non-active users stack up – I wonder if I'm missing the mark somehow.

I understand coming in search in information. A community, whether it's in person or online IS a powerful source of information, but it's greatest value is in the relationships that develop and relationships can only develop through engagement.

That's why I want to celebrate those who are participating.

I'm making up my own ‘Engagement Archetypes' for the sake of this conversation.  Maybe you'll dig it.

  • Disengaged Ghost: You Joined But You Don't Show Up.
  • Curious Observer: You Show Up To Read Only
  • Interested Clicker: You Click Like/React To Conversations
  • Responsive Contributor: You Actively Reply To Conversations With Words
  • Creative Instigator: You Start Conversations

Keep in mind, these Engagement Archetypes are meant to be playful and descriptive – not definitive of any one person. I know not every person is going to be highly engaged all the time. Engagement is going to ebb and flow for any one individual depending on what's going on in their life.

I'm not suggesting everyone try to be the most engaged Archetype either.  All of these Archetypes can describe me depending on the community I'm participating in.

For example, I'm an Interested Clicker in several groups I monitor to keep tabs on what's happening in my friend's businesses.  I'm a Responsive Contributor in a few groups and a Creative Instigator in my own groups and at least one group that I've paid to get access to.

My personal preference is to leave groups I don't feel drawn back to or want to click and engage with – so I'm only a Curious Observer for a little while and I'm never a Disengaged Ghost.  Either I'm a YES to being an engaged member or I'm not a member.

Kelly, Will You Really Remove People?

Yep.  If you join and six+ months goes by with no visible engagement, I'm going to see you as a Disengaged Ghost and remove you. In doing so, I'm going to foster the growth of a highly engaged community of people I'm excited to be in relationships with.

Important to note if you are a Curious Observer – I can't tell you apart from a Disengaged Ghost! If you only show up to read and never react or reply – I have no way of knowing you value the community and it's content.

Does it suck that I might remove someone who loves the content?  Yes!  But I'm OK with that. They can always rejoin if they realize they miss us. It's not like I'm banning people.

Interested Clickers, every Like and reaction is a blessing to those who've started and replied to conversations.  It tells them you value their contribution It may only take you a second – but it means a lot!

Responsive Contributors, when you type out a reply – short, medium or meaty long – you're adding to and increasing the value of the conversation.

Creative Instigator, you are a brave soul! I know it take guts to put your thoughts out there for others to read and respond to.  Keep it up! You're keeping us informed and making us think!

Being an active part of online communities have been integral to my business success and my growth as a human being. Creating a powerfully positive space for community to grow is one of my greatest joys.

Goodness, if you've read this far – I'm guessing community is precious to you too – so I hope to engage with you soon!

Join the Love People + Make Money Community right here.

For even greater intimacy and weekly masterminds calls with me, join the Momentum Coaching Mastermind here.

About the Author

I'm all about Content Marketing & Community Building here at Love People + Make Money. I love to collaborate, so never hold back from sharing your ideas with me! - Kelly McCausey

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  1. I love your decision to remove people from your group if they’re not engaged. I think it can only improve the overall quality of the group as a whole.

  2. I think culling the deadwood makes sense… but I also feel that people will engage at different levels over time.

    So, I might be in your group for 6 months and really busy with other things…. and then a post will grab me and I’ll respond and be drawn in again.

    If I’ve been removed for lack of activity – I don’t get that chance to contribute later on….

  3. Thank you for sharing some more insight into the thought process on this. At first I didn’t understand why you were removing people, but the more you explained your goal the more it made sense. I’m still a little torn over the removing of people, because Facebook is always changing how they show things and not everyone knows to go the /groups area to see if a group has been chatty or not, but this whole conversation and process also gave me a different lens to look at my own groups with. That totally different perspective really got me thinking about new things to keep members engaged and how I could use the group to help people in different ways. And for my group members that aren’t always sure how Facebook works or where to find things I think I’ll drop a few reminders in my email series for them to pop back over and say hello to everyone :)

  4. Yes to all of it :)

    I go through my main group every few months and weed out people who have zero engagement. It’s always been my policy and 5 years ago when I created the group I required monthly commenting or I deleted them after 60 days.

    It created the group I and others craved. A true community across the world that knows little things sbout each other and isn’t afraid to tag someone to ask how an event went or to check in because they’ve been quiet.

    It’s a lot of work, but I love it.

    Sadly, we have had a few tragedies happen and we were able to quickly communicate and get members in the area to help others. This is because we are tight-knit even though we are now at 800 members.

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