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Building Community is Knowing Your Community

By Laura Craft

Skill Level: 101

Our Story: As an industrial SaaS company, our user base is unlike one we have ever seen. They’re manufacturers. Engineers. Mechanics. We have some who are digital natives fresh out of college who know nothing about manufacturing. And we have others who’ve been in the industry for a long, long time and may have never used a computer at work. Nearly all, rarely have time to engage in a tool that isn’t a direct part of their day-to-day. None of them sit in front of a computer for hours on end like we do. Yet, they need a way to develop their skills, connect with their peers (in their company and out!), and learn how to use the Augury products. Enter The Endpoint, a community for production health hosted by Augury.

The Endpoint is the one-stop shop for all things production health. It contains help documentation, training courses, discussions between industry experts and beginners, and so much more.

But traditional community methods of engagement didn’t work for our users. Most of them struggled to even log in, let alone make a post or comment. So we revised our expectations. Instead of focusing on engagement goals centered on reactions, posts, or comments, we had to adjust our focus to what really mattered to our users – customer education.

And the way we delivered the information they needed had to change.

Effort is required to get into our community, find content that’s relevant, and get engaged. Given our user base we had to remove as many barriers as possible. It’s important to remember that our goal is not to get them into the community and get them engaged – it’s to give them information that will make it easier for them to use our product.

  • We connected The Endpoint to our SaaS platform.
  • We send a manual weekly digest. This is different than the new Vanilla Digest feature.
    • We utilize the ‘full excerpt’ setting for our emails.
    • We auto subscribe our users to a category called ‘The Inside Scoop’.
    • Each week we do a post in that category with all the new KB articles, trainings, resources, and discussions that have happened in the last week
    • That automatically goes to every person in the community unless they’ve opted out. This was specifically requested by several of our users and we’ve gotten feedback that these emails are extremely helpful and give our users the info they need without them needing to go anywhere
  • We brought customer education and documentation under the community roof.


  • Know your goal.
  • You need a north star, a guiding compass, a mission that is the reason behind every decision you make.
  • Then commit it to heart. For us, it’s customer education. We want to make our users as successful as possible with our product by giving them the tools and resources they need in the easiest possible way for them to consume them.
  • Know your users. To be most effective, you have to meet your audience where they’re at. Utilize analytics and one-one sessions to get to know them. Do member spotlights (and simplify that process using AI) to help your organization get to know them.
  • Match your goal and your user type to determine what practical strategies you’ll use.

Everything you do in your community should be tied to the goal you’ve set and the users you have. Down to the colors you use, everything should cater to your users and what you want them to get our of your community. Listen, listen, listen, and provide plenty of opportunities for feedback.