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About the VIP-members and behaviour

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Hi guys,

I just want to know have you faced same kind of problems and if so how you have handled those situations.

Our community is mostly p2p support community but we are building also other communality around it ("community of digital life). Currently we have VIP-program and small amount of VIP-members.

Problem is that our VIP-members doesn´t start discussions. They will join discussions and help others but they don't start discussions themselves. I have asked that does they know that they can start discussions and they don't have to ask my permission for that. They said they know.

I don´t know is it ok to ask why they don't start discussions? I don't want to push them.

What kind of VIP-members do you have and have you faced same problems with them? If so, how you have handled those situations?



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Re: About the VIP-members and behaviour

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Also, what do you suggest, what should I do to get new discussions also from VIP-members?



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Re: About the VIP-members and behaviour

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Different users contribute for different reasons and it is difficult, if not impossible, to shift the way a user chooses to use their time. Typically you will find a few personalities. On my own community we have the following contributors (ie. not lurkers);

  • helpers: answer a lot of questions, make up the majority of our superuser program
  • visitors: asks then leaves, often never to return sometimes returning to ask a different question a long time (months or years) later
  • challengers: ask a lot of questions, often challenging business decisions that directly affect them. Can become belligerent
  • trolls: run of the mill internet pests
  • creators: users that raise interesting points and are more likely to want to be credited for publishing useful content

It sounds like a lot of your superusers are there because they like to feel helpful and enjoy helping others only, which is why attempts to have them initiate conversations have failed. Support focused communities tend to end up with a large number of this kind of user in the superuser program as they have more opportunities to tap into their core motivations.

If you want more of your active membership to be starting conversations or leading discussions then you will likely need to tap into an entirely different group. Look at users who initiate a lot and review some of their postings, you may already have a super thread initiator or two already on the forum who fall below the superuser threshold for overall contributions. Once identified it is simply a matter of encouraging those users who already exhibit the behaviour you are after to do a little bit more. One way we have done this is to allow editing of a large portion of our Community Wiki (tKB). This allows those users to tap into their creativity. You could also give them insider knowledge, once trust is established, and allow them to be involved in announcing cool stuff.

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Re: About the VIP-members and behaviour

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Excellent, thanks a lot @DanK your thoughts and advices. After you posted I have started to think about our VIP-members they are just like you said - they want to help others and that is their motivation.

What we are going to do we are going to renew our VIP-program and also our gamification. We have to consider this mentioned issue during our renewing project - how to get more "super thread initiators" and how to keep them motivated.

Thanks a lot and if there is any other tips or perspectives to think about, please feel free to tell. I mean anyone Smiley Happy



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