Takeaways from the Higher Logic Super Forum

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Olivia Hook

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Last week, I had the opportunity to travel to Arlington, VA for Higher Logic’s annual ‘Super Forum’. During this two day high-energy conference, I got to pick the brains of Higher Logic’s creators, as well as other community managers from associations near and far. Being a fairly new AMR and NASCIO employee, I took this conference as a ‘crash course’ in community management.

I was surprised to hear from the majority of community managers that member engagement was their biggest concern when it came to their associations’ communities. The main purpose of an online community such as ours is continuous member engagement. Thankfully, due to our rock star state and corporate members, we never seem to have this issue. These other associations also explained their stress from members not answering their peers’ questions on their communities, and thus, having to step in and either answer it from the staff perspective or convince a member to answer the question. This issue is understandable – our leading industry professionals wear many hats, so time is limited.
I am so thankful that these issues are not part of NASCIO’s member community. We have a large group of smart, industry-leading professionals, who always seem to be willing to share their own state or company’s experiences and knowledge. We are a collaborative group, and for that, I am thankful.

I toted back an entire notebook full of scribbled notes on speakers and sessions I attended while at the HUG Conference, and even signed up for several of the keynote speakers’ webinars in the coming weeks to keep up to speed on proactive ideas for the community. Of my key takeaways from this conference, I think the most important the easiest to implement is the ‘Digital Ribbons’ function. Although this function is not new, NASCIO has not used it in the past. I think it is a fun way to acknowledge our top contributors in the community and give a small reward to our members for their continued contributions.

Another way that we can acknowledge our members for their continued contributions is to promote the ‘Best Answer’ button on message threads. Not only does this function allow further recognition for our members and their contributions, but it keeps these responses marked ‘Best Answer’ at the top of the thread. Members looking for an answer to the intial question will no longer have to scroll through an entire thread to find the answer. Our members are fantastic, and we want them to know they are appreciated!

As I mentioned above, I have an entire notebook full of notes and ideas about how to make the community experience even better for our members. Stay tuned over the next few months as we try new things! Thanks again to our members for your continued engagement with your peers in the NASCIO community.

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