Time to talk about communities.
“Community” means different things to different people. When talking about communities around newsletters, the intention is often to create a direct reader-to-reader connection. Instead of only allowing readers to reply to the publisher, a community allows readers to also have discussions with other readers. Sometimes this community is also strengthened through a deeper communication channel such as a video conference or even a meeting in real life.
theSkimm was one of the early adopters of the community model through their Skimm'bassador
program, a mix of referral swag, online groups and real life events:
What would I get?
Swag on swag. Go wild. Tote your Skimm bag and rock your shirt, while writing in your Skimm notebook, sipping out of your Skimm wine glass under your Skimm umbrella ella ella.
An invite to our private Skimm’bassador Facebook group where you can connect and network with other Skimm’bassadors
Partnership perks. Past highlights: exclusives with our partner brands, co-branded SB-only events, and deep product discounts, etc.
[…] the introduction of connectivity to gaming (hello internet!) had really emphasized how much play was about community. Whether the MMORPG guilds hanging out between dungeon raids, or casual sites like Yahoo Games where the checkers, backgammon, and so on were really just something to do while you text chatted, there were numerous examples of people talking more and more about how the game was a ‘third place’ for them.
[…] a lot of those gamers realized something. They wanted to talk to their gaming friends even when they weren’t in a game, and they wanted to talk about things other than games. Their gaming friends were their real friends. As luck would have it, in early 2015, a new tool called Discord showed up on the market. Its tagline was not subtle: “It’s time to ditch Skype and TeamSpeak.” It had text chat, which was cool, but mostly it did voice chat better than anybody else.
So Discord has taken over as the go-to community platform for gaming. But what’s the right choice for newsletter communities?