Boy, if ever there was a word that was getting constripted into a marketing press-gang and used to assault inboxes the world over with insincere messaging, it's the word community.
I bought some socks from Darn Tough a while back. Apparently I'm now a part of a global community of... I don't know. A community of people who like wool socks that come with a lifetime guarantee, I guess?
If you run an actual, real community where the members know, care about, and support each other, good. Use the word community to describe your thing! But if ever there was a time to avoid stealing valor in your marketing by using the word community to describe the group of randos who have happened to buy a product from you at some point, that time is now.
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A client of mine is taking a risk.
He's launching an actual community; a cross-disciplinary community of practice for insights practitioners. If you're in this small world, you know what an "insights practitioner" is, if not, this description from the community signup page is useful:
The Insights Cooperative is a community of practice that brings together the insights community (UX research, Market Research, Consumer Research, etc.) to empower ALL to more effectively use insights to drive business decisions.
As research functions and insights organizations have become more specialized, our roles are at risk of relegation to tactical “service providers,” where we are asked to simply provide a service, e.g. “we need a focus group,” rather than rather than strategic “senior advisors,” where we are asked to help the business make crucial and pivotal business decisions, e.g. “help us understand and reduce churn.”
As specialized functions have emerged, i.e. UX research, market research, quantitative research, etc., we have become more siloed. These siloes have weakened our profession and position.
I'll be answering questions on positioning for Ari's new community on April 14, 2020 at 3:00pm Mountain Time. You can sign up here if the community and the associated Q&A is relevant to you: https://insightscooperative.ck.page/e3562f9b77
There are 2 spots left in the TEI cohort beginning the second week of next month, in April. Information on the new program structure and new pricing here: http://theexpertiseincubator.com
If you're interested in a closer look at how the program creates change, this unsolicited 14m video from Tom Miller is worth a look: https://youtu.be/qzuy5OoaySg