According to the 2022 State of Community Management report, online communities generate an average ROI of 4,530%, meaning that for every $1 invested, creators see a return of $45.30. The same report also found that online communities increase customer retention, loyalty, customer and customer satisfaction - leading to higher customer lifetime value. The ability to build, engage, and expand these communities is integral to the success of any digital platform. This comprehensive guide discusses the strategies for building online communities, focusing on how creators can effectively engage and grow their audience in a digital space.

Understanding Online Communities

Online communities are more than just groups of people interacting online. They offer a platform for creators to connect with their audience, share content, and foster a sense of belonging. As we move further into the digital age, the importance of these communities only grows, making it essential for creators to understand and use them effectively.

Creating an Engaging Online Community

Creating engaging content to foster active online community

Identifying Your Niche for Online Community 

The first step in building an online community is identifying your niche. This involves understanding who your audience is and what they seek. Creators should research their audience's interests, challenges, and motivations to offer relevant and compelling content. By targeting a specific niche, you can create more focused and effective community-building strategies.

Searching for the Right Platforms for Your Online Community 

Social media platforms like Facebook and LinkedIn offer easy access to large audiences, but specialized platforms like provide more customized and exclusive environments for a community audience. This allows creators to offer branded communities inside their own custom app - whereas using big social media platforms will put your community alongside your competitors.

Creating Content for Your Online Community 

Engaging content attracts and retains members, so creators must offer valuable, unique, and engaging content. This could range from educational resources and entertaining videos to insightful blog posts and interactive webinars. Consistent, high-quality content not only keeps the community engaged but also helps in attracting new members.

Encouraging Community Participation in Your Community Members 

Encourage members to contribute through discussions, Q&A sessions, and collaborative projects. This not only increases engagement but also empowers members to be part of the community's growth - essentially encouraging your community to grow itself. Implementing features like polls, contests, and user-generated content can significantly boost participation.

Building and Maintaining Relationships in Your Online Community 

You as a creator should focus on building personal connections with your audience through personalized communication, acknowledging member contributions, and creating a supportive and inclusive environment. Regular interaction and responsiveness can help in building trust and loyalty within the community.

Using Technology for Engagement in Your Online Community 

Utilizing tools for analytics, automation, and communication can streamline community management and improve the user experience. Technology can help you save time and scale your community faster. Features like push notifications, live streaming, and interactive tools can keep the community active and engaged.

Monetizing Your Online Community

Exclusive memberships, upsells and partnerships for community monetization

Offering Exclusive Membership Options 

One way to monetize your community is to offer exclusive membership options that grant access to premium content, specialized courses, or intimate workshops. This creates a tiered value system within your community, where members can choose the level of access and benefits they want. You can also create a sense of exclusivity and urgency by limiting the number of spots or the duration of the offer.

Partnering with Relevant Affiliates or Sponsors 

Another way to monetize your community is to partner with relevant affiliates or sponsors that align with your audience’s interests and needs. You can promote their products or services to your community and earn a commission or a fee for each sale or referral. This can be a win-win situation, as you can provide value to your community and earn revenue from your partners. You should choose partners that are trustworthy and ethical, and disclose any affiliate or sponsored links to your community.

Creating and Selling Your Own Products or Services 

A third way to monetize your community is to create and sell your own products or services that cater to your niche. You can use your expertise, authority, and reputation to create products or services that solve your audience’s problems or fulfill their desires. The best way is to involve your community in the creation process, by asking for feedback, suggestions, or testimonials. This can increase your community’s engagement and loyalty, as well as your sales and revenue.

Case Study: Allie Cooper and 'Cirque Plus'

Success with in-app community launch on

Launching with an In-app Community with

Allie Cooper escaped the time-for-money trap when she created her own community in a custom app, Cirque Plus. She has 50+ subscribers in her un-app community, paying her $37-$97 per month. Allie’s in-app community brings in more than $50,000 per month. 

She signed up for, and followed bonus training sessions like the Expert Unleashed Challenge to identify her niche, craft her offer, and launch her app. In just one week, she had 22 founder members who paid for her app before she even created the content. She then used the drip content feature to pre-sell new content and schedule its release, giving her more time and space to create.

Engaging and Upselling with Quizzes and Surveys

Allie wanted to keep her clients engaged and satisfied with her custom app. She used quizzes and surveys within her app to get feedback from her clients and tailor the experience to their needs. She also used them to upsell her clients to higher tiers of membership or additional products or services.

Generating Recurring Revenue and Freedom

Allie’s custom app enabled her to create content once and get recurring sales from her clients. She also reached a global audience that she could not have reached otherwise. She earned while she slept, as her app generated passive income from subscriptions and sales. She also achieved more flexibility and time for her family, as she escaped the time-for-money trap and the commute. She could work from anywhere and anytime, as long as she had an internet connection. She also enjoyed the freedom to create content that she loved and that helped her clients achieve their goals.

Beyond Traditional Platforms for Building an Online Community 

While platforms like Facebook Groups and online forums have served as fertile ground for community building, they often impose constraints that can hurt a community's potential. Limited customization, data ownership concerns, and the challenge of standing out in a crowded space are major problems with communities in these platforms. 

The best way forward is to build a community in your own custom app. An app tailored to your community's unique values and needs not only improves the user experience but also opens up innovative options for monetization. From subscription models and in-app purchases to exclusive content and interactive features, a custom app provides a sandbox for your creativity and entrepreneurial spirit. Your Partner in Crafting Digital Homes

As we explore the possibilities of community building and monetization, emerges as a standout for those ready to take their community to the next level. It's a platform where engagement, learning, and growth thrive in a customized and intuitive environment.

With, the tools to monetize your community are not just add-ons but integrated features designed to enhance the user experience and align with your brand's vision


Building an online community is an art and a science. It requires understanding your audience, creating compelling content, using the right platforms, and improving engagement and relationships. By following these strategies, creators can not only grow their audience but also create a loyal and active community that contributes to their brand's success. The digital space offers endless opportunities for community building, and with the right approach, creators can harness these opportunities to achieve remarkable success.