My name is Andrey Kunda and I’m a Community Manager at Plarium. My job is to create content for our 67 official game communities. Thanks to these communities we’re able to stay in touch with players in six languages.
In this article, I’m going to show you how to increase activity in your gaming communities. These tips will also assist you in attracting more players to your site.
The Importance Of Community
There are 2 ways that Community Managers can communicate with their members:
- Personal. Community Managers can actively communicate with members directly in the comment section, fostering the willingness of individual players to share what’s on their mind.
- General. Community Managers can also communicate with members by creating posts that all community members will see. This shows members that the community is moderated and – if you follow our instructions – displays content that benefits them.
It goes without saying that both of these ways of communicating with members are vital to the health of your community. But let’s take a step back and examine just why keeping up communication with members is so important.
Odds are you have a community page because you’re looking to create an environment conducive to the goal you want to achieve – selling your product. Keeping a community page is one of the best possible ways to do this because you’re able to directly influence the opinions of your members (customers) and increase their loyalty to your product. This communication is also important for the members of a community, as it presents an opportunity for them to convey their thoughts and opinions to those able to act on them. In order to maintain a community page that actively attracts new members, you’ll need to publish certain unique information, e.g. the upcoming event schedule, product lore, explanations of how certain product elements were designed, exclusive discounts, etc. This kind of information goes a long way towards meeting the needs of your audience. All you need is a little insight!
If we broke insight down into a formula, it might look a little something like this: Driver + Barrier = Solution. Each of your players is driven by some kind of desire – this is the Driver. There may be an obstacle keeping the player from achieving their desired goal – this obstacle is the Barrier. But the player can be convinced to join your community if they find a Solution that overcomes these Barriers and satisfies the Driver.
Our community includes players from all around the world. There are obviously differences in the cultures these players come from, but our research has shown that the Driver + Barrier = Solution insight formula is effective regardless of culture or background. This isn’t something where we need to ascertain players’ love for a particular game genre or style of play – they’re already here, playing our game, so we can safely presume that a majority of them have an interest in receiving exclusive information about the game and news about future updates. Additionally, players of all kinds enjoy competitions and the opportunities competitions present to win rewards.
One of our main objectives, then, is to determine which Drivers and Barriers unite the most disparate community members. In this way, we hope to find common ground with everyone!
The Importance Of Creating Compelling Content
Let’s say you’ve met your initial goal and now have a large community. The difficulties you face now have to do with the details and features of the social networks and platforms where your community exists. These social networks and platforms work according to different principles and algorithms, each displaying posts in their own unique way. The golden rule of community management is this: if the content is interesting, then the level of Interaction, Reach, and Engagement will rise. This rule is valid for all existing platforms. As we see laid out in the formula Engagement Rate = Interactions/Reach, your Engagement Rate will increase only if levels of Interaction grow at a significantly faster rate than your Reach. So how do you increase your level of member interaction?
The answer is simple – just talk to your members directly. Use calls to action in your posts. Add a link with the call to action that leads them to whatever action it is you want them to take. Make it so that all they have to do is click.
Ask your members to give feedback by liking your post. Write the post in such a way that you present the Like button to the member as a way for them to express their opinion with one simple click. To test the effectiveness of this strategy, we published two very similar posts on two different community pages. In the first post we didn’t include any call to action, and in the second one we asked members to hit the Like button if they wanted to see a certain change made in the game. In this way, we turned the Like button into a way members could express their opinions. You won’t be surprised to learn that the post with the call to action that used the Like button as a way for players to register their opinions received more Likes – nearly TEN TIMES more Likes in fact. What does this mean? Simply that players interpreted and reacted to this second post exactly the way we had intended. In this way, we utilized the Like button and used it to increase player engagement.
- Recognize the importance of both types of community interaction – Personal and General.
- Fill your communities with unique and interesting content.
- Use an effective call to action to encourage players to discuss your post and react to it.
- Utilize the Like button and/or whatever other interaction features your community platform offers.
By mastering these points, you can rest assured that your level of player engagement will greatly improve. Good luck!