Forming a Community Strategy

Session Title

Forming a Community Strategy


Carolyn Chandler, Manifest Digital

Session Type: Presentation

After seeing the kind of buzz that can be created among a customer base by community features and social networking, more companies than ever have been interested in incorporating similar features into their internet strategy.

The development of a successful community site can aid in achieving business objectives by increasing brand recognition and loyalty, facilitating key processes such as sales and research, and providing a method for active generation of quality content. But when does the cost of building an online community outweigh the potential benefits? We’ll explore the potential impact of introducing community features, including effects on a company’s brand and budget, as well as responsibilities the company has to its user base.

We’ll also discuss the considerations that help define a company’s community strategy. In addition, we have created a model that allows for competitive analysis of community features, and a basis for moving from community strategy to feature definition. This includes a discussion of roles, types of interaction, and categories of features that serve as “activity motivators” to encourage the growth of a vibrant community aligned with business objectives.


Carolyn Chandler is the co-author of “A Project Guide to UX Design” and the Experience Design Director for Manifest Digital, a next-generation interactive agency based in Chicago. She’s been designing interactions for software and web for 12 years and leading UX teams for 10. Carolyn is a local leader in the Interaction Design Association ( and teaches at DePaul University, with a focus on helping UX designers build the skills that will help them become business leaders.