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Could your association benefit from a Twitter community?

Could your association benefit from a Twitter community?

In the past few weeks, social media networking giant Twitter have announced the impending launch of a new function ‘Twitter Communities’, and we’re really excited about it as a tool for the membership sector.

The platform is following in the footsteps of  LinkedIn and Facebook, who have seen incredible growth and success of their ‘groups’ function. Many of our association clients have developed strong online communities using these tools, connecting members and sharing information and knowledge in a more accessible and casual online group setting.

Twitter promises the combination of tagged topics with closed group interaction, applying a strong discussion focus and inviting topical streams in an expert environment.  This is especially poignant and potentially very valuable to the membership sector as a tool to unite professionals in a ‘safe’ space to share opinion and provide exceptional raw insight into how members view the industry, the association and the world.

Early stages, big changes

The roll out of this new feature is happening gradually, with only select groups being launched under the moderation of Twitter, however it is expected that the Twitter Communities function will be widely available in the coming months. The introduction of Communities is a bold move for the platform that has remaining largely unchanged for ten years.

Although limited for now, eventually communities will be user generated, but Twitter is launching an initial batch  that centre on less politically-charged yet popular topics including: weather, dogs, footwear and astrology. Although in its campaigning, Twitter features Cryptocurrency and black female photographers.


So how can I apply to start a community?

Twitter is accepting applications to start communities here.

Users must be eligible and meet certain criteria and there will need to be appointed moderators to monitor and ensure compliance within the community. You will need to consider how a Twitter community would be of benefit to your members, and the resources required to ensure the content and conversation is relevant and aligned with the purposes of the group and your association.

Unlike in a Facebook Group, Twitter says that anyone will be able to read, report and quote content posted in a Community, without being a member. Twitter is currently testing methods of moderation and removal of non compliant communities as part of the initial phase of launch.

Watch this space for you and your members

The platform that currently serves as a tool to share breaking news and trigger public conversation is changing, to create features to help users discover people and conversations important to them.  It could be the perfect way to place your association or membership organisation at the heart of a topic or industry in the coming months and a key tool to help new members discover you, and you discover new groups of potential interest. The platform for projection could soon become a platform for connection.

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