Social media is all about community. To raise awareness of your brand on platforms such as Twitter and Facebook, you will need to work hard to build an engaged, relative and loyal audience of advocates and devotees, who, individually and as a collective, will consume your products and services, and, critically, share the good news through positive word of mouth.

This infographic below identifies the six key elements of a successful online community, which includes the following important takeaways:

  1. Culture - Most successful communities create a culture of their own, which will keep members coming back on a regular basis and encourage them to stay connected
  2. Metrics - You must be able to measure the ROI of your community through access to social engagement and conversations
  3. Transparency - Brands need to embrace all types of consumer feedback, as members will easily spot disingenuous engagement
  4. Engagement - You must encourage participation from your audience
  5. Value - Create an environment where important information is shared with and by your community, creating value and driving return interest
  6. Conversations - Don’t think in terms of updates: think in terms of starting conversations

(Source: CMSWire. Social media image via Shutterstock.)