ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

How to Share Great Content into an Online Community

Updated on March 11, 2015
Sharing content into an online community can be very worthwhile, as long as you follow a few simple guidelines
Sharing content into an online community can be very worthwhile, as long as you follow a few simple guidelines | Source

Introduction

Online communities are a great way to discover new information, broaden your horizons and share great content. They allow us to connect with like-minded people, get useful feedback on our questions and opinions and help us to share our experience and expertise.

One of the main benefits of online communities is the ability to share useful, relevant, engaging information, but what's the best way to go about doing that? This article explores several areas that community members can focus on to create and share valuable content and get the most out of the communities that they belong to. Guidelines include:

  • Create content that educates, informs, entertains or inspires
  • Meet people's needs and encourage their curiosity
  • Provide good introductions, explanations and context
  • Never post 'naked links'
  • Never post spam or irrelevant material

Create content that educates, informs, entertains or inspires

Good content should educate, inform, entertain or inspire your audience, and really good content does two or more of these at once!

  • Educational content - This is content that teaches community members how to do something specific. Good examples of educational content include 'how to' guides, tutorials, training courses and the like
  • Informational content - This type of content is designed to let people know about something new and increases awareness and understanding. Good examples of informational content include news, research, people, places, resources and more
  • Entertaining content - Content that entertains is designed to help people pass the time and engage them in a way that is distracting, enjoyable, amusing or fulfilling. This might include quizzes, humor, images, drama, interactive content etc.
  • Inspirational content - This is probably the rarest type of content that's shared, but in many ways it's more powerful than all of the others; inspirational content tends to create an emotional change in the person that's reading or interacting with it. Examples of inspirational content include personal anecdotes, stories, poetry, opinion pieces and more

This means that your content should provide useful, actionable information, let people know about something genuinely helpful, help them pass the time or move them in some way.

Communities exist to mutually support one another; by becoming part of that, you can build your reputation and expertise
Communities exist to mutually support one another; by becoming part of that, you can build your reputation and expertise | Source

Meet people's needs and encourage their curiosity

Good content should meet the needs of other community members, even if they don't know it yet. If it's likely to expand someone's perspective, experience or thinking in some way or challenge them, it's probably a good candidate for content that's worth sharing.

A great way to get people to read articles is to pique their curiosity. Give them enough information to demonstrate why your post might be useful and encourage them to click through or respond to it.

Provide good introductions, explanations and context

In many situations, context is everything, and that's especially true online. When you share content, articles or links, always make sure that you do so in the right way, for example:

  • Introduction - Explain what you're sharing by giving it a title and a brief introduction
  • Explanation - Share what you got out of the article and why it might be of benefit to other community members; go into a little more depth about the article if that's appropriate
  • Context - Position the article so that people know what to expect when they click through to it

Never post 'naked' links

This is a follow on from the previous point and means that you should never post links that don't have an introduction or explanation to them.

People are unlikely to click on links unless they have an incentive to do so. Links without context are most often ignored, and might be removed.

Posting irrelevant, unengaging content into a community is one of the quickest ways to get blacklisted or banned
Posting irrelevant, unengaging content into a community is one of the quickest ways to get blacklisted or banned | Source

Never post spam or irrelevant material

This last point is actually the most important one. Please, don't post spam or irrelevant material.This means content that is mainly or exclusively self-promotional or does not add value for other community members.

Spam material just clutters up the community and is very likely to be removed by moderators. Additionally, if you post spam, you run the risk of being identified as a spammer and being removed from the community.

How to Share Content, Engage and Build a Community Online

What's your next step for sharing content?

See results

In closing

If you take the time to ensure your content is relevant and engaging, other members of the community will appreciate the effort that you're making.

If you continue to share good articles, you'll have a better time and ensure that everyone else does, too.

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • randel9 profile image

      Raffy 

      3 years ago from United Kingdom

      You should know what your readers need and what they will learn from your content that they do not know yet. Something that will benefit them.

    • Paul Maplesden profile imageAUTHOR

      Paul Maplesden 

      3 years ago from Asheville, NC

      Yes, there's quite a bit of 'shallow' content out there, so ensuring that we share in a timely way and that we contribute things of substance can really help.

    • Blackspaniel1 profile image

      Blackspaniel1 

      3 years ago

      Yes, it is a careful balance between writing what people find interesting or useful and writing about things you know well. I agree you should write what people want to read, but to make it worth reading so these same people will read more of your work it must be something you have expertise in.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)