The Nitty-Gritty

  • What makes for a vibrant and engaged online community or group
  • The workflows that Audra Lindsey has used to save time and streamline how she manages large communities
  • The importance of getting members to talk to each other
  • How doing less to manage a community or group can create a more valuable experience
  • Why Audra focuses on building a culture around sharing experience—not sharing advice

Don’t let the term “community building” fool you.

This episode is all about how we bring people together as small business owners. Whether you’re building community in a small group, on a membership site, through in-person events, or even on social media, the act of gathering people together is often a core activity today’s small businesses.

Unfortunately, there’s been so much hype about automation, scale, and getting hands-off with your business over the last 5 years that many small business owners have made a mess of their people.

They’ve kept them at arm’s length. They’ve developed products and offers that put huge, unhelpful boundaries between them and the people they serve. They’ve automated all the spontaneous interactions out of their communication.

And… it shows.

It shows in brand authority. It shows in customer satisfaction. And, it shows in the bottom line.

I’ve made this mistake and experienced this myself.

Well, we’re in middle of a market correction.

One that, I believe, is going to be around for a very, very long time.

Business owners are cleaning up all the crap that’s kept them away from the people they serve.

They’re putting the focus back on those very important people.

You see it in small group programs, mastermind groups, hands-on support, community-based business models and more.

So while you’ll hear the words “community” and “community building” a lot in today’s episode, what we’re really talking about is how to focus on people in a way that adds to your bottom line and makes your life easier as a small business owner.

And, I know no one better to talk about this than Mighty Networks’ Audra Lindsey.

Audra is the Senior Community Strategist at Mighty Networks, where her focus is on designing and implementing best practices in community strategy and community building. She has launched successful apps and online communities for customers including Gretchen Rubin, the NRDC, The Representation Project, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Intuit, McGraw Hill, Lean In, and American Express. Her role also includes leading content strategy, providing support and guidance for all Mighty Network Hosts, and helping deliver product improvements and features.

Before Mighty, Audra spent several years working with arts organizations and non-profits in the Bay Area to expand their online presence, design innovative marketing campaigns, and launch new fundraising initiatives.