With many entrepreneurs seeking alternative revenue streams, building a true online community seems like a fantastic option, but what are the elements of a true community?

Is it just a group of people? The short answer is that it’s so much more!

Those constantly involved in building these communities can attest that it is a web of interconnected elements that creates a healthy community.

Understanding those elements will help you craft a thriving membership business.

What Are The Primary Elements That Make A Community A True Community?

Several factors make a true community valuable, such as a shared identity, creating a sense of belonging, and more.

So, answering the question, “What are the elements of a true community?” the answer is a combination of factors.

Each of these elements weave together to form a true community. These include:

Shared Identity or Purpose

At the heart of any genuine community you’ll create, there needs to be a shared identity or common purpose that unites its members. This shared identity or purpose that your community centers around can be cultural, a common interest, a specific goal, or shared values.

This central focus will provide the foundation upon which your community is built.

For example, NetNetHunter.com brings together investors who want to build high-quality Net-Net Stock Portfolios. This is the common purpose.

Sense of Belonging

Individuals joining your true community will start to feel a sense of belonging. Members of a true community will feel accepted and valued and have a deep connection to the group, creating a safe and welcoming space for everyone.

This can be helped by developing a method where new members introduce themselves, send follow-up emails to new members, and ask specific members for their thoughts.

Interconnected Relationships

Authentic communities are built on solid connections. Your members will form meaningful relationship networks characterized by trust, empathy, and mutual respect. These bonds help create a sense of unity and support.

One tactic here is to place members in pods for mini masterminds. This helps foster relationships. Another idea is to have a “member connect” section where people in similar geographies can connect and even meet in person.

Regular Interaction

For a community to thrive, members need to interact with each other consistently. Making sure this can happen means allowing them to engage through various means, such as meetings, gatherings, discussions, or shared activities – in person or via an online community. Regular contact strengthens the community’s bonds over time.

Founders (you) can encourage discussion by starting provocative threads. Don’t aim to be rude or offensive; instead, create a debate on something in your niche that interests people.

Mutual Support

A true community means members provide support, encouragement, and assistance to one another.

This can come in many emotional or practical forms to help achieve common goals. This support network within a community is one of its defining elements. And it’s one you need to nurture as the community’s founder.

As we mentioned, when answering the question of “What are the elements of a true community?” it’s support that trumps the others.

Collective Goals or Values

Members will join a community when they have shared goals, values, or principles with your group.

Often, these collective objectives give members a sense of purpose and direction, and the shared goals help align the community efforts toward a common cause.

In your marketing, it is important to define clearly and tightly who the group is for and its aims. It’s just as essential to spell out who the community is not for and what you don’t focus on. This will yield a much more aligned membership base.

Effective Communication

For any true community to last, there is a need for open and effective communication channels.

Community members should feel comfortable expressing their thoughts, concerns, and ideas openly and respectfully, fostering a culture of transparency and understanding.

Having a clear set of forum rules will help tremendously, so long as you enforce them. Clearly spell out what behavior you will not accept and the consequences for breaching the rules. Feel free to kick out a disruptive member and give them a full refund if it means a more harmonious and supportive community.

When you weave all these elements together, you get a true community that will thrive well into the future.

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