Developer Advocacy
Building community flywheels
Let's take a dive into learning what flywheels are and how to make them, eventually using them to build better communities.
Let’s build some community flywheels - Orbit

  • Every community builder out there has felt like this at some point -- finding that initial traction with ongoing discussions can be hard.
    • Start with easy discussions, like introduction posts.
    • Experiment with writing posts
    • Creating a regular or ritual post
  • The point with all of these mini flywheels is you can’t write stuff and expect magic to happen, you need to find actions to elevate your content.
  • Great communities are built on great ethics, kindness, and human behavior.
  • Build all that ⬆️ into your community, one small flywheel at a time.
  • Community guidelines do not make a great culture, actions do.
Having a flywheel that encourages great community culture not only encourages others to copy your ‘good actions, but featuring selected community activities also indicates things you want to see within the community.
  • Giving and helping are at the heart of great communities.
  • Community culture does not happen overnight.
  • Flywheels take practice, lots and lots of practice. Failing is a part of the process.
  • Flywheels are the things you do, the process, the daily tasks.

  • The main challenge faced by a community builder -- trying to achieve a constant flow of activity.
  • A thriving community is one that feels like there is the right balance of activity.

  • more discussions
  • more members
  • creating more value
  • events that matter
  • more connection

Could not load image
  • Consider funnels in terms of flywheels.
    • Effective flywheel creates energy
    • Energy leads to growth 📈

  • Instead of funnels, we are using flywheels
  • An effective flywheel creates energy or traction, which then naturally leads to growth.
  • The key is to figure out a set of actions that support each other and keep doing them
Could not load image

  • bring energy and traction, usually in the form of more or higher quality activity
  • add value to the community
  • align with your goals and vision

  • A flywheel or multiple connected flywheels have grown and evolved there will be a time it comes to a natural end.
  • What worked 5 or 10 years ago most certainly won’t work today.

  • flywheel actions like this will help you get where you want to be
  • people will naturally gravitate towards you when you come to launch a blog, a newsletter, podcast or a community.
  • when you have that gravity = people join your community!

  • Knowing your people
  • Conversing with them
  • Creating something of value

“I want more members” flywheels
  • Think about what it is members need
  • How you can align that to your community vision
  • Start by getting to know your people.
Could not load image

  • Instead of subscribing to their newsletter, you follow them. Bonus points for building trust by participating in the conversation.
Could not load image
Could not load image
  • The above are a few examples of creating flywheels and how it evolves further using Twitter as a real-life example can be seen below.
Could not load image

Export as PDF
Copy link
On this page
Ways to increase the quantity/quality of activity
Community funnel of hope
Example of a Flywheel