Measuring the ROI of a Community — Ep 8

In this episode, we talk about how to measure the ROI of your community. Let’s face it, building a community takes a real investment. At the end of the day, you want to know how your efforts paid off in the real world. And while community building is about so much more than the money, it certainly is important to measure.

We also talk about both the tangible ROI as well as the intangible benefits of an online community.

Episode Highlights:

  • There are two ways to measure the success of a community that supports your business goals — revenue generating and influence generating activities. Kami likes to call it “Top of Wallet” and “Top of Mind.”
  • Tangible revenue generating activities include referrals, new clients, current clients, previous clients, sales, ad revenue and funding generation platforms.
  • Affiliate partnerships are a great way to generate revenue. Madalyn discusses how she uses this method to generate revenue and how to use affiliate partnerships at events and speaking engagements.
  • Joint venture partnerships are most successful when the collaboration allows each partner to bring skills to the team that help to build a viable business model.
  • Some of the questions you can ask to measure ROI include: How many new clients are coming into your community through your calls to action? How many leads are your community bringing in? Are people signing up, and converting by purchasing what you’re selling? How much does it cost to capture these leads?
  • Current clients are important in your community. As a business, repeat business is critical to bring in income. Connecting and interacting with clients on a regular business helps to stay at the top of their mind when they have a need to be filled.
  • Nurturing previous clients goes hand-in-hand with connecting with current clients. Being present in social media and engaging helps previous clients see you more often and keep you at the top of mind, perhaps even leading to referral.
  • Ad revenue is another way to measure the ROI of your community. Advertising is the financial model of the internet and can be used on your online real estate.
  • Courses and online products are another tangible way to add value to your community and turn a profit.
  • PatreonKickstarter or a similar platform can be used to generate funding.
  • The size of your community isn’t as important as the stats and if your community is engaged with your offering.
  • Intangible revenue generating activities include invitations to speak, guest speaking on a podcast, interviews and media experiences, lists and links.
  • Unpaid speaking invitations are a great way to get visibility, connect with other speakers and possibility of partnerships.
  • Visibility, new followers and product promotion opportunities are just a few benefits of guest speaking on a podcast.
  • You gain visibility through visibility. As you become part of a community, be helpful, prove yourself as an expert in an area and collaborate to teach your community. As you grow, people will notice and add you to lists of experts, or to a roundup post.
  • To measure your ROI, ask people where they found you so you know where to spend your time. Track your costs in a spreadsheet and look at how that relates to your income, taking out costs and labor.
Return on Investment for an Online Community

Links, Tools & Apps Mentioned in this Episode:


Your call-to-action for this episode is to make a list of 10 people to collaborate with. Reach out to at least 2 of them this week. Ask how you can help them. If they have a community, join it. If you have a community, invite them to join. We want to hear from you. Reach out to us on Twitter and at the #CommunitiesThatConvert hashtag.

How to Reach Kami Huyse:

If you’d like to learn more about Kami, visit her website at www.zoeticamedia.com. You can contact her by email at kami@zoeticmedia.com or tweet to @KamiChat.

How to Reach Madalyn Sklar:

If you’d like to learn more about Madalyn, visit her website at www.madalynsklar.com. You can contact her by email at madalyn@madalynsklar.com or tweet to @MadalynSklar.

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