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About face: how facebook drove us away

Dave Pilcher, VP of Sales and Marketing at Freeport Press explains why they decided to kiss Facebook goodbye.

Two weeks ago we made the decision to delete our Facebook presence. Unlike some companies that have left the social network in a huff, we aren’t angry. We aren’t bitter or resentful. No angst.

Facebook: sorry were CLOSED

Case study: How Microsoft Ventures India used Minsh to strengthen their startup community

Microsoft Ventures India went way beyond their 4 month accelerator program when they built an awesome, thriving, engaging community of founders. All this with a mobile app.

About the accelerator program

Microsoft Ventures India runs an accelerator program since September 2012. Twice a year, they invite between 10 and 15 startups, chosen from the 1,000+ applications they receive. These few elites are then mentored and pushed to accelerate their business for 4 months.

All the founders that have taken part in the accelerator program have a strong bond: they are all entrepreneurs, and they have all been encouraged and motivated for several months at Microsoft Ventures.

Microsoft Ventures India office space
Microsoft Ventures India has a beautiful office space on Lavelle Road - Bangalore

Find members relevant to you

Now you can search for members that are really interesting for you and get in touch with them. All that directly from your app.

Today, I’d like to introduce you to a recent update we have done with the Minsh App.

What is this all about?

So, what is this “Minsh app” all about?

It started in summer 2012. We were a tiny team of javascript developers, and we wanted to meet more like-minded developers. After noticing there were no javascript meetups in Bangalore… Wait, did you just say no javascript meetups in Bangalore? In a city of 8 million inhabitants (and growing), with about 50% of the population being an engineer? Ok something was very wrong there.

Early version of BangaloreJS app
Early version of BangaloreJS app

So we started BangaloreJS: a monthly meetup, completely free, where developers could meet, discuss and present their latest hacks.

Mobile community platforms: the new kid on the block

I recently read an article about upgrading from a mailing list server (or listserv) to an online community platform. In the article, they explain that a listserv used to be the “new kid on the block”, but today, there are much more powerful online tools to engage a community. Not that online community platforms can entirely replace emails. But they definitely are complementary.

Although I found this article interesting, I believe it should have been published 2 years ago. No, online community platforms are not the new kids on the block anymore. They’ve been here for a while, and they’re getting old. If we look at the usual product life cycle graph, I’d say that online platforms have already reached the maturity stage. 

Online platforms have already reached the maturity stage

Will mobile communities replace online communities?

Everything is going mobile. Look at people in the metro, at home, on the beach, at work, jogging in the park, in the bathroom… They’re all stuck with their phones in their hands.

Everything is going mobile

What about communities? Are they going mobile? Should they? Will they replace online communities entirely?

The hardship of community managers

I recently read an interesting blog post about how Community managers’ salaries are all over the place and it made me think: what is the value of a community manager?

There are 2 important points that I would like to discuss here:

1) Community management is undervalued. As stated in the post, community managers are often not considered and rewarded as much as they should be. A good community manager can make a huge difference in a corporation, whether it is to build a stronger relationship with its clients or to spread awareness. Your brand can only truly affect people’s lives if the community behind it is strong and thriving. And that’s a full time job. And that’s why you need a community manager.

ONE DOES NOT SIMPLY BECOME A COMMUNITY MANAGER