Along with goals, community initiators must also understand the needs of their desired members. The community’s purpose will determine the kinds of individuals the community will want to recruit and attract. The prospective community manager must develop a deep understanding of what these audiences require and how they behave online. When it comes to determining what functionality a technology platform should provide, successful online communities of practice tend to focus on doing the few things that actively engage all segments of their memberships and avoiding additional tools and features that do not meet this crucial test.
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