What is a World Class Community?

Social Community software specialist Telligent has released a new whitepaper looking at the characteristics of successful online communities.

The most revolutionary change in business since email was introduced is taking place, writes Rob Howard, founder and CTO of Telligent.  Organizations are spending aggressively to enact changes in how they manage knowledge with employees, partners, and customers through the use of social software.  Gartner predicts, “The worldwide market for enterprise social software will top $769m in 2011, up 15.7% from the $664m spent in 2010.”

Over the past several months Telligent has conducted research, spoken with practitioners, and gathered our thoughts based upon our experience with over 3,000 customers on the concept of world class community. 

The question we wanted to answer was: What makes some communities highly successful and why do others wither and die?  Have world class standards yet been established by anyone? And is there a methodical approach that an organisation can follow to create successful communities?

We focused on communities that were either business-to-business, business-to-consumer, or business-to-employee, but all harness the knowledge and passion of their audiences to improve perception of the business and create measurable business results.

What we discovered was surprising.  No community has attained world class status and while there were some incredible success stories, many new communities routinely made the same mistakes; this despite all of the materials and recommendations available.

We identified nine characteristics that we believe will be demonstrated by “world class” communities.  We also provided a five-step recommendation for how companies starting communities should approach this revolution in business.

Learn more in the World Class Communities white paper

Rob Howard, Founder & CTO of Telligent will be taking part in the Social CRM and Community Building panel on day two of Social Media World Forum Europe 2011 on 29-30 March in London. For more information please see the event agenda.