Harnessing the power of online community can cause tectonic shifts in the ways associations prove their worth and service their members. But for an online community to grow into a place of learning, collaboration and engagement, it needs to encourage people to come together on their own terms.
We are becoming ever more accustomed to information and services on demand, on our phones. Associations need to step up to meet these expectations for their members. If an online community lacks a strong mobile presence, it misses out on significant traffic and engagement opportunities.
Without mobile, you narrow opportunities with 80% of your users
Modern users expect flexibility and fluidity when it comes to the platforms they engage on. If you expect them to jump through hoops or settle for desktop-only access to your community, then you are alienating the majority of users.
80% of internet users own a mobile device. And that number is growing every year. The modern digital age is defined by access to information, therefore by falling short on mobile integration, you fall behind on allowing your audience the directly access and interact with your online community 24/7.
Phones are our window to the world
It's not exactly breaking news - we are attached to our phones these days. We turn to our phones to access the people and information most important to us, whether that be iMessaging, checking the weather, posting on Twitter, or Googling answers for any given question that pops into our heads. By having a mobile community or app, you give your users a direct channel to your community whether they are on their couch watching television, on the subway or in their office.
Modern engagement is defined by frequency!
- 40% of all internet traffic is mobile
- 26% of consumers start mobile research with a branded app
- The average American spends 3 hours a day on their smart phone
- 39% of Americans own a tablet
These are just some of the strong mobile statistics that prove that mobile needs to be not just an aspect, but rather the foundation of your community engagement strategy.
Make cross-platform engagement as easy as possible
Cross-platform engagement is a great way to increase your exposure and strengthen the social value your community provides to its members. You want your users to share content within your community as well as to other social media platforms, and vice versa. By having a community that is easily accessible on mobile devices, you can reap the benefits from user mobile sharing behaviors:
- 60% of sharing on Facebook takes place on a mobile device.
- Social media users are more likely to share content on mobile than on desktop by a 2-1 ratio.
Associations face a lot of challenges. Many of them spend most of their marketing budget simply on brand awareness and recognition. This boils down to getting people to care, getting them to take action, and getting people to consume your content. As an association, you can rise to meet these challenges by implementing the best practices of mobile integration into your online community.