🧭 Crafting a Compelling Business Case for Your Community Initiative 🎯


Your community initiative holds tremendous advantages for various departments within your company, yet it competes with other budget requests. To secure the support of resource gatekeepers, it's crucial to present a compelling and reasonable business case that highlights the value of a community.

Here are some key points to ensure your business case shines:

Connect Objectives to Company KPIs

While the softer benefits of a community, such as improved customer relationships, are valuable, decision-makers often prioritize the bottom line. Focus your case on increasing revenue and decreasing expenses, tailoring the benefits to your specific business. Common areas to concentrate on include generating more sales and freeing up support resources.

Develop an ROI Model with Quantifiable Metrics

Once you've identified your key focus areas, create an estimate for the expected return on investment (ROI) from the community. Consider elements like ticket deflection costs, new leads generated through community marketing, lead conversion rates, and the impact on reducing customer churn. Highlight the added SEO value provided by your community forum.

  • Ticket Deflection: Evaluate the cost to handle a ticket, considering product complexity and case intricacy.
  • New Leads: Leverage your community as a marketing asset to assist prospects, upsell, and cross-sell. Factor in the SEO value from the community forum.
  • Lead Conversion Rate: Showcase your community as a place where prospects validate their decision to buy, emphasizing the strong secondary benefit of community support.
  • Reducing Churn: Emphasize how a vibrant community fosters strong bonds, making customers more likely to stay with your product.
  • Customer Advocacy: Illustrate how a robust community is a powerful tool for recruiting brand advocates, ensuring positive word-of-mouth marketing without additional costs.

Justifying Community is a Breeze

The business case for your community initiative doesn't need to be overly complex. Community is a proven strategy that delivers real and measurable benefits to any business. If your case is aligned with these benefits and incorporates straightforward measures to track success, gaining approval from fiscal gatekeepers becomes a predictable outcome.

This post was originally published in 2015 but has been revised and updated from its previous edition to ensure accuracy and relevance.