August 9, 2018

Growing an online community to 4,500 in 8 months.

Thought I'd share some of my learnings from growing my Five Ideas a Day Community. Here are 3 things that helped me get to the 4,500 mark.

You need to give value for free.

Prior to launching my community, I posted five ideas every single day for free on ALL my social networks (Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn & a handful of forums). This helped me build up a community without even knowing it at the time.

Find the right audience to promote your product.

I've heard a lot of mixed reviews when it comes to launching on PH. Here are my two cents. I knew when it came to launching my Five Ideas a Day website that PH would be a great product match fit. Why? Well, because a lot of my ideas were around apps, technology, and startup ideas. Considering this is 99% of what is posted on PH I knew people would engage. There were trends I noticed with the top voted products - colorful gifs, nicely designed imagery and of course emojis in the description. All of these helped my launch become [#3 highest voted]( on the day with 922 upvotes. It also worked well for my second launch - my 5 Ideas a Day ebook which was voted #2 highest voted on the day.

Offer a free plan

So, after sharing 5 ideas for 365 days I grew a decent following online. When I announced that I was going to post my 5 ideas behind a paywall it was met with mixed reviews. Some people were annoyed that they would now have to pay a whopping $1.99 per month to continue receiving my 5 ideas a day. I think people forget that I don't have a full-time job and that I pay the bills through my side-projects. I spend around 1-2 hours each day working on my 5 Ideas plus the cost of running the platform all adds up. So to please everyone I offered a FREE membership plan, the free plan offered a weekly review of 5 of my ideas. This kept both parties happy and helped my member count grow.

The above is a top level overview of some of the methods I used but it should help plant some seeds in your head when coming to growing your community. If you have any questions then please ask below and I will get back as quickly as I can.

  1. 4

    When you say "ALL my social networks (Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn & a handful of forums)", it was your personal account or you started directly with @fiveideasaday account?

    Also I am wondering how did you get featured on Forbes etc... it was after the PH launch?

    Last question: How many users before PH launch and after?

    1. 2

      All on fiveideasaday accounts :)

      Yes, everything kind of snowballed after PH. When you get to the top 3 products of the day you get a LOT more exposure on other blogs, forums etc.

      If I can remember I received around 2,700+ members from PH launch.

      1. 1

        Thanks for the answer... I think it is really hard to start a social account and get the first (real) followers.

  2. 2

    Alexa 830k! Not bad at all for such a new site!

    1. 1

      Haven't checked the Alexa score since launching :)

      1. 1

        You probably have access to more accurate stats on the site's growth in usage 😁

  3. 2

    Thanks for sharing David! Where do you host your community discussion for people to chat about the ideas after they're posted?

    1. 1

      Hey Kate, it's a mix between email, slack group and also on the page itself :)

      1. 1

        Nice, thanks!

  4. 2

    Very informative post David, thank you.

    1. 1

      No problem my man :)

  5. 2

    Really cool story

    I'm really curious about your conversion rate , but I will understand that you prefer to keep it for you as well :)

    1. 1

      Hey Oliver, nothing to hide here.

      92% on the free plan & 8% on the paid plan but more members are switching to paid recently which is great :)

      1. 1

        So cool, can't wait to see the next steps

  6. 2

    Congratulations on the great progress so far. I knew this sounded familiar, we are connected on LinkedIn and I enjoyed seeing the idea posts pop up there.

    1. 1

      Awesome to hear Gary, also drives home the importance of tip #2 ;)

  7. 1

    Thanks for the write-up! How much profit are you having at this point?

    1. 1

      After I pay monthly fees etc it would be around $400 so nothing to write home about yet :)