Engagement is a top challenge for most communities.
neoHome—an online community dedicated to sustainable futures—is no different.
The community connects trailblazers and experts in all aspects of sustainability in an online space so they can pool knowledge and experience to tackle complex and strategic sustainability challenges.
“Get stuff done” is the community’s mantra. It needs to encourage members to go beyond simply liking and sharing content and take meaningful action.
We recently ran a webinar with neoHome’s core team to discover more about their community engagement strategy.
However, if you’re short on time, you can read the key takeaways below!
#1 Be an “enabler”
neoHome’s co founders, Ross Nicholson and Phil Harrison, were manually introducing members of their network so they could collaborate on sustainability projects. Then they thought, “And what if we got out the way?”
By using Hivebrite’s community management platform they were able to transform their network into a self-supporting community. They ensure people have access to the right peers and tools to get things done.
#2 Choose the right team
The team behind the community is composed of four core members and twenty-five hand-picked curators who are pioneers in different topics within the sustainable futures sector.
Curators were not only selected for their expertise but also because they have a collaborative and inclusive agenda. Part of the curators' role is to unite members around challenges and ultimately drive action for change.
The community is for-profit and the core team and curators have a share in the success. A percentage of all revenue generated from the platform is shared amongst these stakeholders who can decide if they keep it, share it, or donate it.
3# Scrupulous preparation is key to success
Shoving great people together in a digital space doesn’t mean something is going to happen.
In addition to taking time and effort to choose the right content curators, the team carefully structured the community—taking significant time to decide on the nine sub-communities of the community. They meticulously thought out the title and description of each. Members feel enamored to join because the goal and value of each sub-community is crystal clear.
4# Take a test and learn approach to “get people on the dancefloor”
The community is all about getting things done. Members are encouraged to go beyond simply liking and sharing content.
The community is designed to foster powerful connections around the world, to offer a safe space to ignite constructive ideas and to provide the right tools for meaningful action to be taken.
The neoHome team thinks of their community as a party. They don’t want people in the kitchen or next to the wall—they want to get them on the dance floor, involved in the action. They accept that there is no silver bullet for this. They are using a test and learn approach, and adapting based on what they learn.
The core team works with the curators on targeted content strategies to inspire action, such as webinars and talking heads. They want to move away from just sharing information and nudge people to ask for help and share ideas. The team encourages people to share their experiences on the platform to demonstrate that it is a mutually helpful community.
5# Good people refer good people
All members are referred by an existing member. Only a certain number of invitations are sent every month so the team can observe and adapt to what happens as the community grows.
neoHome offers a basic free membership that gives a taste of the community, as well as a concessionary membership to make the platform accessible to as many people as possible. The team is also developing a corporate membership package.