Developing an online community is hard work – you can slave away on the never-ending task of creating content and wonder if it is all worth it when the fruits of your labour bring less than ideal results. One great motivation tool comes from the most important part of your community – its members.
Keep a ‘nice emails’ folder
It sounds crude, but keeping a ‘nice emails’ folder can be a great motivational tool. After around 10 months, I still consider myself an amateur blogger. Writing on a regular basis is often hard work, and very often I struggle to find the motivation to write – after all, this blog is not monetised and is currently run more as a hobby than anything else.
I read every single email sent to me by readers of this blog, and reply to all that require a response. I have been very lucky in that many emails I receive from readers are complimentary of the articles I write. These are the type of email that everyone loves to get; you are being appreciated for all the hard work you are doing, and you get a nice warm feeling from reading such messages.
This feeling is only ever temporary though and is soon forgotten. For this reason, it is important for you to keep a record of all the nice emails you receive – the next time you are feeling low, unmotivated or unappreciated you can delve into your ‘nice emails’ folder. I guarantee you that after a few minutes you will soon be reinvigorated and ready to start the next task on your ‘to-do’ list.
Are you approachable? Can your members contact you?
Building an archive of nice emails is impossible if your members don’t know how to contact you. Similarly, if your members find you unapproachable they will be hesitant to email you. As I have said before, it is essential to the success of your community that you are both approachable and easily contactable.
To come across as approachable, you need to be involved in your community. You need to be personable and caring. You should be actively inviting feedback and suggestions from your members and you need to show you appreciate their membership. You also need to ensure that it is easy for your members to contact you; if they don’t know how to do this, how can you expect to receive those nice, appreciative emails?
Do you keep a ‘nice emails’ folder? Has it helped to motivate you? What are your thoughts on this idea? Share your thoughts and opinions by leaving a comment below.