3F the typical community approach

A few weeks ago I presented on B2B goes social about B2B communities. After my presentation and during the drinks I got this question: “If I want to start a community for my customers tomorrow what should I do?”. Basically those kind of questions always boil down to the 3F answer: Friends, Family and Fools.

If you want to get things started ask the people who are close to you what they think and if they would like to help you. Don’t just drop them an email, invite them over, give them a proper coffee (or if it is in the afternoon: a good pint) and share your thoughts with them and ask for feedback. If they care as much about you as you do about them you will get good advice.

It might sound obvious to you, however friends and family are a good starting point for many of your new ventures. The third F, fools, is the group that arrives after a while. It is a sign of a mature community as soon as the fools arrive.