Organizations of all kinds – including commercial ventures, political advocacy groups, fan clubs, and professional and artistic associations – seek to build communities based on shared interests while delivering brand benefits. Authors Carrie Melissa Jones and Charles H. Vogl provide clarity, logic and structure to this endeavor with their comprehensive guide for founding, building and operating a brand community. They direct brands away from a transactional focus and toward helping community members meet their needs and, in the process, the organization’s needs as well.
A brand community serves its members and your organization.
A community is a group whose members share one or more mutual concerns. Some communities grow around specific brands. As the center of a brand community, a brand can be an organization of any size and for any purpose that offers value, including nonprofit, political, artistic and faith-based organizations, in addition to for-profit businesses. A brand community serves its members and its parent organization. Members wish to promote one another’s well-being, associate with an identity correlated to the brand’s purpose and participate in shared experiences.
All brand communities – regardless of size, goals or age – share common principles. Members understand the community’s values, identity and standards. They undergo an initiation, participate regularly and have relationships with one another – though not everyone who checks into the community will join. To convert visitors into members, offer the option to participate and connect, create conditions that foster relationships and camaraderie...
Carrie Melissa Jones founded the brand community consultancy, Gather Community Consulting. She was a founding partner and COO at CMX. Charles H. Vogl, an executive adviser and guest lecturer at Yale, wrote The Art of Community and Storytelling for Leadership.