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September 20, 2023

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06 MIN.

Community Building in the Meta Age: Harnessing the Power of Social Connections

Community building in the Meta age is a constantly evolving endeavor. By leveraging the vast reach of Meta’s platforms, you can create a vibrant, engaged community!

Nahla Davies

Nahla Davies

Community Building in the Meta Age: Harnessing the Power of Social Connections

We’re in a time when communities are no longer just defined by the neighborhood in which you live. Now, they exist in the digital world as well. This orientation to a digital-first society offers some amazing opportunities to build a relationship with your audience. But let’s talk a little more about how you can actually build a community.

The Importance of Community Building in the Digital Age

Community building is the way brands build loyalty and grow in this digital age. It provides a space for customers to truly engage with the brand (and each other for that matter). By providing a sense of belonging, the community becomes self-sustaining. In other words, it becomes its own ecosystem. In this realm, your brand is built through user-generated content and good ol’ word-of-mouth marketing. 

Overview: What this Article Will Cover

With all of this in mind, let’s talk about what this article will delve into: mainly, community building within the Meta framework. We’re going to look at social features and interactions that are available across Meta’s platforms, followed by the best strategies for developing engaged communities. In addition, we’ll give you some real-world examples and tips you can use to navigate the system and take full advantage of it for your brand. 

The Meta Ecosystem and Its Social Features

Understanding Meta’s Social Platforms

Meta, formerly known as Facebook Inc., is a technology conglomerate that offers multiple social platforms including Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp, Oculus, and the newest addition—Threads. Each of these platforms offers unique avenues for community building:

  • Facebook: It’s flagship platform. Still a powerhouse for building communities through Pages and Groups.
  • Instagram: A visual-centric platform that is best for brands that need to showcase their products and stories.
  • WhatsApp: Mainly used for community building in smaller and more intimate settings with Groups.
  • Oculus: A VR platform that provides some real opportunities for immersive interaction. 
  • Threads: A Twitter/X clone with many of the same features, focuses on short-form posts and discussions. 

Social Features Across Meta’s Platforms

Let’s talk about some of the features across Meta’s platforms:

  • Groups: Almost all Meta platforms support the creation of groups, both public and private. An essential feature for brands.
  • Communities: Public spaces for multitudes of people to focus on certain topics and discuss them.
  • Stories: Available on Facebook and Instagram for sharing moments.
  • Live Events: Livestreaming capabilities so you can engage with your community in real time.

New Dimensions in Social Connectivity - VR Meetings, Augmented Reality, and Future Trends

Excitingly, community building has poured into the realm of virtual reality and augmented reality (VR and AR). Oculus is the platform for this, as it lets you hold virtual reality meetings, and have social spaces which are more personal and engaging. It’s not face-to-face, but it’s close! 

Strategic Foundations for Community Building

Identify Your Community Objectives

If you want to build a community that lasts, you must know your objectives. Do you want increased engagement or better brand loyalty? More user-generated content? Each goal requires a unique approach. 

Building Community Personas

Regardless of your goal, knowing your customer is everything. If you can develop a community persona, you can get insights into what your members are looking for in your community and how they like to engage.  

Community Guidelines and Best Practices

For any community to function well, setting the stage with a clear set of guidelines and best practices is essential. These should cover everything from behavior and interactions to posting guidelines and rules for user-generated content.

Nurturing Engaged Communities

Using Groups to Foster Discussion

Groups on Facebook and WhatsApp are great channels for discussing specific topics. You’ll want to make your groups welcoming and relevant, not to mention well-moderated in order to be sure your community members will keep using them. 

Hosting Events and Live Sessions

Live events and webinars are great as interactive and real-time forums. Instagram Live or Facebook Live have easy-to-use features and also provide analytics and feedback you can use right away. 

Collaborative Content Creation

If your customers are willing to give you their own generated content, why not give them the tools to do so? Use Instagram stories, Facebook posts, or even a collaborative Oculus session to broaden your brand’s reach. You might also have to think about additional tools. 

Let's say your community frequently engages with Word documents—whether it's co-authoring articles, sharing event agendas, or circulating internal newsletters. In this case, investing in a tool like a DOCX editor becomes crucial. Aside from editing, users can collaborate in real-time, add images, or even integrate the tool with other web apps. 

The bottom line is—whatever tools you decide to incorporate, they must be useful to your community. 

Driving Loyalty and Brand Advocacy

Leveraging Social Proof

User reviews and testimonials are amazing for word-of-mouth advertising and showcasing them within the community can encourage more people to participate.  

Reward Programs and Gamification

If you want high engagement, use rewards and games. Give points or exclusive access to content as a reward for contributions. One great idea is to offer exclusive VR experiences for your most active community members. Make it fun and rewarding and your customers will reward you back. 

Emotional Connection and Shared Values

Emotional connection through shared values and narratives will likely be the most important aspect of building your community. Storytelling is part of being human. It’s one of the oldest ways we learned to connect to others. You can use this via Facebook Stories, Instagram reels, or even Oculus experiences. Your community will feel more connected to your brand and stay loyal longer. 

Real-World Case Studies

Case Study 1: Building a Product-Centric Community

GymShark is a great example of building a community in the digital space using powerful social media tools like Iconosquare. They used Instagram to build a community centered around their health and wellness services, mainly using user-generated workout videos, recipe sharing, and live fitness challenges. Now, they’re a hub for wellness inspiration. 

Case Study 2: Leveraging Communities for Social Causes

EarthJustice is another example of good community building. They’re a non-profit that used Facebook Groups to create a virtual space for eco-conscious individuals. With their Facebook Live sessions, they discussed key issues and shared actionable tips that promoted action by their followers. 

Case Study 3: Creating Niche Communities

The NBA has been to create new immersive experiences for its community of fans. After teaming up with Meta, fans can now watch select games in VR through Oculus. Their fans get to see the games as if they were right there in the stadium, and even chat with the avatars of other fans in virtual attendance.  

Actionable Tips to Propel Your Brand Forward

Monitoring Efforts and Analytics

You must rely on data in order to know how effective your community-building efforts have been. Luckily, Iconosquare provides plenty of analytics tools to monitor metrics like engagement rates, user-generated content, and ROI. Use these measurements to refine your strategy going forward. 

And of course, don’t forget to focus some of that effort on building good PR. The PR industry is worth $97 billion dollars for a reason - good PR has a massive effect on a brand’s engagement and feedback. Focus on metrics such as social engagement and the quality of media your communities are receiving. 

Adapting and Scaling Your Community

Your community will keep growing and therefore your strategies should as well. You may need to transition a WhatsApp group into a 1larger Facebook community for example. Knowing when and how to scale is important for growing your communities.

Quick Wins for Immediate Impact

For those looking to see rapid growth, consider strategies like hosting time-sensitive challenges or partnering with influencers for live sessions. These initiatives can give your community an immediate boost and draw in new members while you re-engage existing ones.


Community building in the Meta age is a constantly evolving endeavor. By leveraging the vast reach of Meta’s platforms, you can create a vibrant, engaged community that not only boosts your brand but also becomes a self-sustaining ecosystem of advocacy and loyalty. From persona creation and objective setting to new technologies like VR and AR, the avenues are endless.

Armed with these insights, you are now ready to take the plunge. Your next steps should involve outlining objectives, choosing the right Meta platforms, and launching your initial initiatives with a clear set of guidelines and best practices. Good luck!

the writer
Nahla Davies

Nahla Davies

Contributor @Iconosquare

Worked on large scale enterprise projects and built compliance teams at multiple Fortune 500 companies.


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