I was at a session in Affiliate Summit West where I ran into Deborah Ng, Conference Director of BlogWorld Expo. Over the past years, her and I have become good friends. I was honored to speak at the last two BlogWorld events. I knew Deb had a book out, but I was truly surprised when she pulled one out of her bag and gave it to me. I was crazy busy once I came back, but I am finally done going through the book. Below are my thoughts about the book: Online Community Management for Dummies.
Community Management is something that you will have to do as a blogger. Just like most other things communities do not start out big, but it will only grow big if you are a good community manager. Deb. shares all different type of aspects to community management. For someone who is relatively new, it could be a lot to handle. I know that from personal experience. This book outlines not only all the hats that you have to wear as a community manager, but it shows you how to do it well.
The book covers topics like Basic outline of community management, establishing community policies and guidelines, building a productive online community where you listen and communicate with your members, growing your community by encouraging interaction and involvement as well as attracting more people through other measures. Most importantly, Deb shares her expertise on how to assess your growth, evaluate the results, and make decisions on what you find.
One of the aspects I love about Deb is that she takes her online connections offline. I talked to her over the web for the first time, but now I have met her at numerous events. She is exactly the same person as she is online who is welcoming and friendly. I find it a rare characteristic to have. A lot of people I meet online are totally different in real life. Deb shares her expertise of taking your online community offline by hosting meetups, tweetups or other events. The book ends with ten essential tasks for community managers, ten must have skills, and ten best practices.
I think the book was a breeze to read. I cruised through the information really fast. I wished that it talked a little bit more about the monetization aspects, but I realize the book already covers too much and it is hard to cover everything.
If you are a blogger or an online community manager, this is a must read book. Most of the time, I don’t like Dummies books, but this one was well-worth the read.
P.S. Thanks Deb for signing my copy. I love collecting the books with author signature