In an industry filled with mercenaries looking to make a quick buck, a loyal community is often the difference between a successful project and one that is not.
However, building and maintaining such a community is easier said than done.
This blog post delves into understanding the unique nature of web3 communities, identifies common challenges in sustaining engagement, and outlines innovative strategies to foster long-term participation.
Whether you’re looking for high-level strategies to boost community engagement or quick tactics to sustain long-term participation, you have come to the right place.
Understanding Web3 Communities
Web3 communities are distinct from traditional online forums due to their foundation in blockchain technology. This new paradigm offers decentralized and transparent interactions, changing how users connect and contribute.
At the risk of sounding pedantic, we urge you to read the previous paragraph again and then think about incentive alignment in web3 communities. Here, members are not just participants but often have a stake in the community's success, whether through token ownership, governance, or contributing to the network's development.
This sense of ownership and direct involvement sets web3 communities apart, creating a more engaged and invested audience. The flip side is that communities that don’t provide this sense of ownership often set on the path to a slow death.
Challenges in Sustaining Engagement
Several companies have built a business around addressing the need of communities to engage their business. Fortunately or unfortunately, these companies revolve around getting members to participate in ways that are counter-intuitive.
One key issue is the overreliance on one-off events and promotions, which can lead to temporary spikes in activity but fail to foster long-term commitment. Additionally, the novelty of web3 can initially attract members, but without ongoing reasons to stay engaged, interest can wane.
Challenges like fluctuating market conditions, technological complexities, and the need for continuous education also play a role in engagement levels. We have all seen our favourite Discord servers go dry in the bear market.
Strategies and Tactics Long-Term Engagement
To address these challenges, several strategies can be implemented. The good news is that they’re all fairly easy to understand and implement. However, consistently executing on these simple ideas is where most communities falter.
Let’s discuss some strategies and tactics to incentivize long-term engagement.
a) Building a Value-Driven Community Culture
Creating a community culture that transcends transactional interactions is crucial. This involves fostering a sense of belonging, where members feel their contributions are valued and that they are part of something bigger than themselves.
In the long-run: Run contributor campaigns that reward members in measurable ways
Today: Go to your community’s Discord/Slack and publicly appreciate your most valuable members. Doing this once every two weeks is a great way to emphasize what you truly value.
b) Implementing Decentralized Governance Models
Decentralized governance allows community members to have a say in key decisions, fostering a sense of ownership and responsibility. This can lead to higher engagement as members feel their voice matters in the community's direction.
In the long-run: Setup a Snapshot Space or something similar where members can vote onchain.
Today: Start a new channel in your community’s workspace, and get everyone to vote (using reactions) on something trivial, like the copy for a blog post or a tweet. Yes, this is trivial. It is also the perfect way to display your commitment to involving everyone.
c) Continuous and Transparent Communication
Keeping the community informed about developments, challenges, and successes ensures transparency and builds trust. Regular updates and open lines of communication keep members engaged and invested in the community's journey.
In the long-run: You can probably disclose more to your community than you think is necessary. Have regular conversations with members of the core team to discuss what all can you open up to your community.
Today: What is a big decision you are mulling over internally? This could be something trivial like deciding to purchase an enterprise subscription of some software or could be as serious as setting the compensation rubrics for retroactive funding. Whatever it may be, today is a good day to tell your community members about this.
We are not asking you to inovlve them in the decision-making just now, just informing them. You will be surprised to see how nicely your members will take to this.
d) Rewarding Consistent Participation
Incentivizing ongoing participation through rewards, recognition, or token incentives can encourage members to remain active and contribute regularly.
Note: This is a conversation to have after you have sufficiently worked through the long-run suggestions of the previous points.
Blockchain-based social media platforms that allow users to influence content moderation policies. Decentralized exchanges with native tokens that reward liquidity providers. P2P lending platforms using smart contracts to automate loan agreements and interest payments.
These are all ways community members are being engaged today.
It is clear that fostering long-term engagement in web3 communities requires innovative approaches and a deep understanding of what drives these digital ecosystems.
By building a value-driven culture, implementing decentralized governance, maintaining transparent communication, and rewarding consistent participation, web3 communities can thrive.