Building an online community app for your brand doesn’t have to be time consuming or costly.

Sure, you can build an online community app from scratch if you have a huge budget. Or, you can create a community on Facebook or LinkedIn – but hacking the algorithm to get yourself noticed among all of that digital noise can be time consuming and challenging.

Luckily for you, there’s a quicker and easier way that lets you get the best of both worlds – a community app builder. A community app builder lets you choose your own design, features, and apply your own branding. The best part? you get to create a unique social space for your brand without having the likes of Facebook or Twitter taking control of the experience.

We’ve put together the crucial steps to make it happen:

#1. Define the purpose for your online community app

An online community app can benefit you in a number of ways. For example, you could use it to offer a space for your customers to help each other with tips and answers to troubleshooting questions. Or, you could use it to act as a forum where your community can leave feedback, share experiences or dream up the next great product idea. For customer-centric brands, these kinds of communities are often a driving force of brand loyalty. People who come for the product often end up staying for the community.

Community apps are on the rise. Brands across many different niches are using them to create thriving communities of people who share the same interests or to join online events like group coaching or fitness training sessions. Thinking about how you can leverage the power of community for your own brand will help you figure out which functions and features will be best-suited to your audience. 

#2. Choose a white-label platform

If you’re relying on Facebook to build your community, you’re not the one in control. Facebook is. But what if you want to own and control the brand experience? That’s where a white-label online community app comes in. Our platform is precisely that – a readymade solution which you can brand and personalise according to your needs. It’s your app after all.

With a white-label community app builder, you get control and ownership of the experience. All the content created in your community belongs to your brand, and you get to manage and engage the community in whatever way suits you and your customers… all without having to write a single line of code.

#3. Identify your brand advocates

You probably have some customers who would never think of looking at the competition and will happily spread the good word about your brand. Well, at least we hope you do. These are your brand advocates, your most valuable customers. And they’re not just valuable because they like to buy from you, but because they recommend your products and services to other people.

The opinions of your brand advocates matter most. After all, they’re the ones with the power and influence to spread the good word. You can reward their efforts by inviting them to be among the first to join your new community. No doubt, they’ll appreciate the privilege of getting an early-access behind-the-scenes look. And, because they’re your brand champions, their feedback will be very valuable when the time comes to get your community ready for a full launch.

#4. Test, rinse, and repeat

By working closely with your brand advocates, you’ll be on the right course to build a community your wider audience will love. For example, if you’d like to see lots of people engaging with your community by responding to comments in Newsfeeds, you should encourage your first members to do that. When more join your community, they’ll likely follow the same behaviour.

There are also some important practical advantages of giving your online community app a proper test run. For example, you may find opportunities to get rid of unused features, add new menu items, or improve the look and feel. After a few feedback loops and improvements, you should be ready to launch your app and build a thriving group of engaged and loyal followers. 

Final words

Launching an online community might sound like a daunting task, but your efforts will more than pay off in the end. Here’s a recap of what you need to do first:

  • Decide what you want to achieve
  • Choose a solution that puts you in control
  • Identify your most loyal customers and get their opinions
  • Test everything, and make sure it’s easy to use.

And, if you choose the right software for the job, you can make it happen in no time!

Find out how to start building your online community app today here