The Community Club

Laura
Laura

Posted on

Transitioning from an external to an in-app community

Hey everyone! I am new here and am immensely curious about this newfound community of community builders.

What are your thoughts about things to consider when transitioning a community a brand has built on an external platform (let's say FB for example) to an in-app community (asking your engineer and product team to develop something for people to actually interact inside your product)?

Discussion (3)

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cmuteio profile image
Gregory Pitts • Edited

Hi Laura,

I'm coming from an extensive background in UI programming and product development.

The first thing that I think about that your engagement will likely drop. If they are finding your community on Facebook, then they have a chance to engage with your community every time they login to Facebook. Facebook has a ton of strategies to get people on the platform, as their entire business model is to get people to spend time on platform. So you are benefiting from that right now.

Similar to that, I would think about how much expectation there is build into the user finding your community in a certain place. All the sudden, it's one more app they have to open on their phone, and they cannot find your community as easily. Your app isn't in their daily wake up routine of "open up and check facebook". Some number of people will drop.

Of course, there is the engineering cost of building, but it's not just that. Also consider the opportunity cost of your engineering team NOT working on something else in your product that could provide more value to the business than the switch from FB--> in house community management.

Creating your own allows you to measure metrics is a more specific way (although you'd have to build in more metrics than Facebook, which will take a while). It also gets you away from Facebook brand, which is becoming more and more toxic every day. I wouldn't sign up for a community hosted on Facebook, and I feel many people are trying to rid their lives of Facebook.

Most importantly, it allows you to control the experience. This could be good or bad, depending on the quality of your engineers.

What is your product? Is it an app or a website? What would your in-house experience do that FB groups doesn't do? Why are you looking to switch? And what business value will it drive?

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landing_liz profile image
Liz Friedland

definitely interested in following along on this topic - we are starting to do this now within our product !

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loycebw_ch profile image
Loyce Witherspoon

Same!