Featured Posts (27)

Take thousands of people all over the world devoted to peacebuilding and international collaboration, put them together in a community and what do you get? The Peace and Collborative Development Network. Founded by Dr. Craig Zelizer in 2007, PCDN has been uniting both job seekers and esteemed professionals in social development fields to help make the world a better place. With a robust selection of resources and a self-maintained advertising program, PCDN is leading the way in its field. Dr. Zelizer took some time to speak with us about where the network has been and where it's going.
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Are Comments Bad for Science?

Popular Science declared that it is shutting off comments because "comments can be bad for science." The logic driving this decision is that less informed, quick-to-react readers may dominate the discussion and lead others astray. We argue that there are better ways to approach the problem at hand and offer alternative solutions to keep the community in tact.
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The goal of every community manager is to progress your community through its lifecycle. If you achieve this, you maximize what your community can be, the benefit it brings to your organization, and the benefits that members gain from the community. Watch the recording of Richard Millington's presentation to learn more about The Online Community Lifecycle and improve your approach to community management.
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Unpopular Communities

I recently read "The Power of Unpopular" by Erika Napoletano, the no holds barred brand strategist who makes a splash in the marketing world with her frank, uncensored advice. While the advice in her book is primarily aimed at brands and companies, I found that much of the wisdom could easily be applied to online community. Here are my favorite takeaways for cultivating an "unpopular" community.
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We're excited to announce a free course for Ning Network Creators developed in collaboration with FeverBee, a top community management consultancy. In the course, you'll learn the skills, knowledge, and resources to build a thriving community. This self-paced course, which contains 10 lessons, covers the objectives of a community, understanding your audience, recruiting your first members, creating thriving discussions, developing content and facilitating exciting events. At the end of each lesson, you'll find a list of specific action points. These are elements that you can directly apply to your community efforts.
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There are three paths to gaining influence in your community: likability, reciprocity, and expertise. In this video, Richard Millington explains the benefits and pitfalls of each approach and reveals the reasons for cultivating an insider group. If you want to learn how to steer the direction of the community while keeping its members happy, watch this essential community management talk.
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Your goal, and the goal of every community manager, is to progress their community through the lifecycle. If you achieve this, you maximise what your community can be, the benefit it brings to your organization, and the benefits that members gain from the community.
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If there is one single thing every community manager should know about communities, the lifecycle is it. 

Using the lifecycle you can identify exactly where you are now and where you need to go next. 
In this series of posts, we're going to explain the full online community lifecycle.

 The establishment phase of the online community lifecycle begins when the community has reached critical mass.
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The Online Community's Ecosystem

Your community lives within an ecosystem. This ecosystem is the broader topic, industry, area, field, group which encompasses the community. The ecosystem has a significant impact upon the community. It provides both inspiration for material in the community and opportunities to foster a closer sense of community.
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Lectures at home and homework during classroom time? Sounds like the education world turned upside down, right? Over at the Flipped Learning Network, that's just what they're trying to do: bring innovation to education by "turning learning on its head." Utilizing technologies such as screencasting and virtual textbooks, teachers of flipped classes attempt to reach every student like never before. Educators into Flipping their Classrooms gather together at the Flipped Learning Network's Ning Network, Flipped Classroom, where Jerry Overmyer, Mathematics and Science Outreach Coordinator for the Mathematics and Science Teaching Institute at the University of Northern Colorado, oversees the community of over thirteen thousand members. Jerry took some time to talk to us about Flipped Classroom and how to manage such a large community.
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Everything between the moment you establish the objectives and the moment you begin doing outreach to your members is the conceptualization phase. This is when you decide who you're targeting, what the community will be about, what type of community it will be, and how you get it going.
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“Why should I invest in a custom community on Ning – why not just focus on my Facebook Page?” It’s a question I’ve heard frequently since I joined the Ning team in 2009. While there isn’t just one answer, custom communities do offer several unique benefits including complete ownership of the relationships and membership data, the ability to communicate with fans when and how you want, the chance to create a branded destination, and the freedom to monetize fan activity. However, the most important reason for investing in a custom community is the outcome – higher quality engagement with fans, peers, or customers.
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Rokkus Radio is more than a radio station, it's a community with bucket loads of personality, a lot of heart, and a dedication to trans-media storytelling. We caught up with the charismatic founder of Rokkus.com, John Starr. In this interview, John takes us through aspects of the launch and daily operation of a narrative radio station and alternate reality entertainment-based community.
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Successful Community Managers are experts in facilitating discussions, and we’re all learning best practices on seeding new discussions, responding warmly, etc. These topics are the bread-and-butter of Community Management. In this article, we want to explore special projects or initiatives that add to the community mix.
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On June 21, 2013 at noon, thousands of geospatial professionals will switch on their survey grade GPS devices to simultaneously measure and record information about their location in the largest scale land surveying project ever undertaken. The project is sponsored by the Land Surveyors United (LSU) community. We asked LSU Founder Justin Farrow to explain the significance of Survey Earth Day to the community and planet.
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Types of Community Growth

How you persuade new members to join a community isn't as interesting as why you are persuading new members to join a community. Making a community bigger won't necessarily make it better. In fact, evidence suggests that making a community bigger will decrease the level of participation. It gets noisier, harder to follow and less personable than it used to be.
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Ning is excited to announce that its partnership with BandPage, the most authoritative, up-to-date content in the music world. Bands can now create a custom fan community in minutes, combining publishing, community and their BandPage content in a way never before seen.
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Every few weeks, Ning invites a leading expert to discuss trending topics and best practices for community management. Watch the recordings here.

More than two million people have built a branded social network on Ning. Many of these customers now enjoy thriving online communities. You can find a few of those success stories here.

Learn what it takes to thrive and see what it is possible to achieve with Ning.


Growing a thriving online community is one of the most rewarding things you can do.

Our goal at Ning is to make building a community dead simple. We provide an incredibly reliable, popular, and easy-to-use platform so you can focus on cultivating your community.

Learn how to launch your community in minutes.

Have you considered monetizing your community? Download your free copy of Monetizing Online Forums by Patrick O'Keefe to learn what methods are available, how to implement them, and how you can benefit today.