WorkRamp Communities is now available.

17 Community-Building Tips From Customer Education Experts

You’re doing your customers a disservice if you don’t have a place for them to connect.

Customer communities are all the rage in B2B today, and for good reason. A customer community can drive real results for your customers and your business by increasing product adoption, decreasing churn, and promoting brand loyalty by providing a centralized platform for knowledge sharing, customer support, networking, enhanced customer engagement, innovation, and so much more.   

Communities aren’t just virtual meeting spaces; they’re dynamic hubs where customers share experiences, learn from one another, and actively participate in shaping the future of your brand. 

“A community is so valuable for customer education because no one wants to feel like they’re on an island,” Emily Chrystal, Learning Manager, Emplifi, says. “Today, everyone is so separated, and making those connections can be very hard. So anything we can do to build connections through education will mean more success for our customers so they don’t have to face challenges alone.”

The power of peer-to-peer learning

workramp communities

Pictured: WorkRamp Communities product

Communities provide a space for brands to offer customer education and necessary resources and allow customers to learn from each other. 

“There’s only so much we can do as a business,” Amy Elenius, Manager of Customer Education, Gorgias says. “We can show you how to use the product and the tools in the kitchen, for example. But what merchants want to see is what other merchants are making. What does everyone else’s menu look like? So we find that is super valuable because all we need to do is facilitate that space, and then the merchants teach each other.”

Whether troubleshooting common issues or demonstrating innovative use cases, customers can share knowledge that goes beyond what support channels may offer. This peer-to-peer learning enhances the customer experience and benefits users and your brand.

“Our customers across the country face change and challenges in all facets of their workflow. Offering our customers a forum to connect to one another and discuss best practices, interpretation, and encourage each other is an opportunity to unite and help our customers in a way we haven’t been able to before.” Sarah Fritzsche, Product Education Manager, Murj.

Breaking down silos and promoting connectivity

Customers aren’t just passive consumers; they’re active participants who seek opportunities to share experiences, insights, and feedback.

“As we build our community, there’s a natural evolution taking place. We find ourselves at a crucial juncture with a diverse and engaged group of individuals who take great pride in how we celebrate and reward their contributions. To enhance their experience, we’ve developed a dedicated mobile app that adds a gamified element to the community. Complementing this, we’ve successfully integrated a WorkRamp Academy within the app, allowing us to publish engaging content that users can interact with for automated points and prizes. Surprisingly, the most frequent question we now receive from our users is a simple yet crucial one: ‘How can we connect and communicate with each other?'”


Adrian Valente, Director of Training and Enablement, Sunbit


A community provides a space for customers to engage with each other, exchange ideas, and collaborate on problem-solving. Through these connections, customers can glean insights, tips, and best practices directly from their peers. 

Engaging in meaningful conversations within a community builds a sense of loyalty and encourages a collaborative relationship between customers and your brand.


Expert advice for launching and growing a customer community

The benefits of a customer community cannot be overstated. However, creating a thriving community is a process that requires careful planning and execution. 

From pre-launch planning to building engagement and measuring success, eight customer experts share their experiences and tips for creating impactful communities to empower customers, reduce churn, and boost brand loyalty.  

Creating communities for customers’ needs and learning styles

Building a community is not a one-size-fits-all process. To provide genuine customer value, your community must address customers’ needs and pain points and cater to varied learning preferences. 

“Keeping aligned with the needs of the customer is key.  There needs to be a clear reason–the WIFFM (what’s in it for me) needs to be palpable and obvious.”

Dave Derington, Customer Education Expert & Co-host of CELab podcast

“Whether you’re exploring a customer-only or more open community, it’s critical to have conversations with people you believe would be your ideal members. You should ask about how they like to learn, digest content (e.g., articles, events, etc.), where they go for help, etc., to inform your strategy and launch meaningful, value-add programs for them to help them be successful with your product(s) and/or service(s).”

Joel Primack, Community Consultant and Content Creator

Building pre-launch excitement

A successful community launch requires laying the groundwork. This includes cross-team collaboration to align messaging, build anticipation, and enlist champions and beta testers to test community features and create excitement from day one.

“Develop a pre-launch community of champions so that when you launch,  there are already champions ready to help.”

Seth Leursen, Director, Yugabyte University

“Reach out to customers who can be evangelists for your company and invite them to help jumpstart any outreach.”

Cyd Dawson, Training and Documentation Specialist, Axiom Higher Education

“Get a group of beta users who agree to help you build the community.”

Mary Green, Owner and Customer Marketing and Advocacy Leader, CMAweekly

“There needs to be excitement, so launch should involve direct engagement with the Marketing team to build that excitement and help provide the WIFFM.”

– Dave Derington

Keeping customers engaged

Once launch is complete, maintaining consistent customer engagement is vital. Keeping customers engaged goes beyond forums and discussions. To provide genuine customer value, your community should exist alongside your customer academy for the most comprehensive learning experience. This way, you can determine the best resources to address customers’ needs and keep them engaged.

Discover more strategies to keep customers coming back.

“New content, networking, webinars and content promotion through newsletters.”

Devaki Srinivasan, Senior Technical Program Manager, Cisco 

“Live events, a library of events, showcasing customers and their use cases.”

Kristine Kuchich, Principal Owner, the Training Sherpa

“Content and activity–the community needs to be a go-to resource. If you have customers bookmarking and checking the community FIRST (not support, not an academy), you have their attention. It’s a node to get people what they need.”

– Dave Derington

“The hope is that by providing the right on-time opportunities for engagement and being consistent, customers will be engaged and keep returning.”

– Cyd Dawson

“Build relationships and constantly invite people to participate.”

– Mary Green

Measuring community success

WorkRamp Communities reporting

Pictured: WorkRamp Communities product

Building a community requires investing time, resources, and budget, so you must be able to measure the outcome of your efforts. This starts with establishing your goals and business objectives. The specific metrics you measure may vary by organization and product.

“Product adoption and engagement, increased engagement with acts of advocacy, inverse relationships between churn and community engagement.”

– Kristine Kukich

“The number of champions the community attracts and grows independently of the parent organization.”

– Seth Luersen

“Impact depends on business objectives. Community supports many different kinds of initiatives such as peer learning, product information updates, support (advanced use cases), voice of the customer, and even engagement/excitement.

“Vanity metrics are a good place to start. Here, we’d look at things like MAU (monthly active users–or weekly, or daily), number of comments, number of likes, number of posts, and number of DMs. This is the baseline to show you’re community is being used. After that, it’s time to consider correlating that activity to business outcomes. If it’s adoption, we want to connect community activity to our platform. By difference, you’d be looking at accounts that do vs do not use community and measure impact on churn, number of support tickets, ACV, MRR, ARR, and so on–all customer success metrics, your choice.”

– Dave Derington

Lessons learned in community building

Community building is an iterative process; you learn things along the way that can help you improve your community and streamline the process in the future.

Discover what our experts learned from their community-building experiences. 

“Not tracking data from day one. I tracked a lot, but I should have tracked more. And then investing in automation early on. We’re all about automation at Gorgias. We don’t believe that machines replace people, but the value they can give back is huge. When I started, I didn’t automate a lot; over time, I’ve automated more so that I have more time to respond to people.”

– Amy Elenius

“Not being as present as I should have been.”

– Kristine Kukich

“Not tracking my metrics enough to prove success.”

Mary Green

“Failing to provide enough resources to support and maintain the community.”

– Dave Derington

With the right resources and team alignment, you can create a customer community that empowers your customers and benefits your brand. These tips and shared experiences can help you avoid common pitfalls and build, launch, and maintain a successful customer community.

Bring customers together and create a central hub for customer learning with WorkRamp Communities

With the power of WorkRamp’s Customer LMS + Communities, you have a single platform to deliver engaging, impactful customer programs without the cost of multiple vendors. Customers and partners always know where to go for the most up-to-date information, and you can gain valuable feedback to shape your product roadmap and strategy.

Learn more about WorkRamp Communities or contact us to schedule a free, personalized demo.  


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Maile Timon

Maile Timon is a Copywriter and Content Strategist with 10+ years of experience writing for B2B and B2C brands. She creates thought leadership and SEO-optimized content and short- and long-form copy for websites, landing pages, email campaigns, and more. Follow Maile on LinkedIn.

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