The Internet is the wortd′s largest marketplace and provides businesses with the ability to interact with their markets in a much more direct and tailored way than ever before. This book looks at commerce–centric communities as a source of value for both customers and businesses; it shows how to build an online "customercommunity" that gives customers a reason to stay loyal. Drew Banks and Kim Daus explain exactly what the customer–community is and then reveal the tenets that will make it strong: sustainability, size and scalability, social connectivity, and soul. The authors show how to "communitize" commerce, build a solid base of repeat customers, develop new revenue opportunities, and cost–effectively implement a customer–community strategy. Customer.Community will help cultivate a mind?? set to leverage the collective, untapped power of your customer base.
"Banks and Daus take a solid step toward solving the chicken–egg challenges inherent in coordinating commercially motivated online communities."
Heath Row, Social Capitalist, Fast Company
"eBay–like peer–to–peer marketplaces dramatically increase the exchange of value between a business and its customers. Customer.Community shows how any company can leverage this dynamic to drive loyalty and profitability."
Beerud Sheth, cofounder and GM of ELance
"The term virtual community carries so much baggage that many people forget that community, at its essence, is simply people interacting with other people. Underscoring the basic principles of community building, Banks and Daus show how paying attention to the interaction between your customers can impact the bottom line."
Cynthia Typaldos, cofounder of GolfWeb, founder of RealCommunities, and president, Typaldos & Associates
"Customer.Community is a great look at how online community really works. I tell people that if you want to save the world, well, you don′t get to do that, but improving customer service really helps. This book brings you far in that direction."
Craig Newmark, founder, craigslist
DREW BANKS is an independent management consultant and former vice president of Community at ThirdAge Media. He has also served as director of Worldwide Performance Support and Employee Communications for SGI. Kim Daus is director of organization learning and communication at Intuit and former vice president of content and community at ThirdAge Media. Banks and Daus are co–authors (with Markos Kounalakis) of Beyond Spin: The Power of Strategic Corporate Journalism (Jossey–Bass, 2000).
Check out the website at [external URL]
Introduction: The Customer–Community.
Is Commerce Antithetical to Online Community?
Part One: Why Customer–Community?
1. The Business Case.
How Customer–Communities Advance.
Your Business Goals.
2. The Customer Case.
E–Commerce Experiences That Span.
Maslow′s Hierarchy of Needs: Individual, Social, and Spiritual.
Part Two: Customer–Community Basics.
3. Twelve Principles for Building Community.
The Foundation for Strong Communities.
4. Customer–Community Profiles.
Ten Types and Thirty–Five Examples of Customer–Communities and Their Defining Characteristics.
5. Growing Your Community.
Overcoming the Inherent Challenges of Large–Scale Communities.
6. Understanding Community Bonds.
Discovering the Intrinsic Bonds Within Your Customer Base.
Part Three: Customer–Community and the Bottom Line.
7. Creating Value from Customer–Communities.
Sixteen Bottom–Line Possibilities.
8. Organizational Issues and Roles.
Aligning Strategy, Structure, Communication, and Leadership.
9. Before You Start.
Ten Questions to Help You Think Through the Issues.
Afterword: Turning Customer–Communities into Gold, Harry Potter Style (Michael Lowenstein).