This report is a summary follow up to our coveted 2021 report. Here, you will find data on how the community industry is evolving and insights based on the observations of some of the forerunners of the Indian community industry.
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While community managers are refining their approach to reporting, more and more businesses are hoping on the community wagon.
38% participants have already figured out how to effectively measure and communicate the value of community to the leadership.
Communities are now seeing active participation from founders, other senior leadership and members of teams, indicating a behavioural shift.
Pawan Rochwani, further validates this finding with his remark:
“Businesses are starting to rely more on community than risky and expensive paths such as performance marketing. This trend is emerging stronger in B2B and SaaS companies.”
Communities are evolving from being perceived as yet another fad to a key in enabling larger business goals.
Over 80% of communities are focusing on the number of active members to measure value.
While it is well known and accepted that most businesses are still figuring out how to evaluate the impact of community, metrics around active and new members, and event attendees are leading the tracking game.
In words of Nipun Goyal going forward
“Clear understanding of the mission and objective is going to be a must for community teams. Depending on the current focus of the organisation, the objective might be upselling, increasing reach, retention, etc. Clearly communicating the objective of your community to stakeholders and aligning efforts with the objectives is how communities will become a major component of the business flywheel.”
Community builders in India, are rather bullish on the future of CAC (community as a career). Excuse the bad pun but believe us when we say that the future of “CAC” is appearing bright as majority of our respondents (64% to be precise) are not worried about losing their jobs despite the widespread downsizing compared to 41% confidence amongst community builders worldwide.
55% community builders plan to stay in the field as they eye for bigger roles within strategy, marketing and communications.
Not only that, the role of community manager is evolving from being operations focused to more around formulating strategy, leading the team and building deeper relationships with the members.
Furthermore, they are also contributing towards marketing, social media and content creation. As such, not only are these people evolving to be all rounders, they are becoming indispensable.
Communities are also seeing increased participation from founders as they see it as a way to
“Co-create with the users. Communities help businesses have a testing and feedback loop with the early adopters and frequent users resulting in faster and efficient iterations rooted in user feedback” says Neha.
Community building is a nuanced field having overlap with various functions. While a lot of things that happen or need to be done don’t really fit into a category, over time communities will see segmentation not only in the tasks and responsibilities of internal teams but also a level of customised experience that current social platforms can not offer.
"Every community needs to have a mission, focus on adding value to each cohort of your community, and identify the factors that are creating the stickiness to your community"
That’s the way Shruti sees it and our experience suggests that this is definitely the way forward.
AI will be a major lever here as we build more tools aimed at reducing the time and effort required for repetitive tasks such as moderation but also leverage AI to create a more intuitive experience based on user engagement.
The trends also indicate that while users will become more invested over time, they’ll also be part of fewer communities resulting in the rise of micro communities in future.
Community building is an evolving segment and like everything else, first movers will have the advantage of evolving as the user interest and expectations evolve.
In a world of lower attention spans and mechanical content generation, connections and customisation is going to be the biggest USP for businesses to stay ahead of their competitors. Only time can tell how businesses will actually solve for this but one way or the other, communities are definitely going to be a key component of the strategy.