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5 Paths to Community Insight using Orbit

March 30, 2022
Alex Morton
Software Engineer
5 Paths to Community Insight using Orbit
Welcome to The Observatory, the community newsletter from Orbit.

Each week we go down rabbit holes so you don't have to. We share tactics, trends and valuable resources we've observed in the world of community building.

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Orbit provides rich data about every member of your community, including who they are, how they're contributing, how frequently they engage, and more. There's a lot to uncover, so we've created several features that will help you find the most useful information at a glance.

In this post I'll be sharing five key Orbit features you can use to gain key insights from your community. 

1. Member & Organization Profiles 

The Member Profile is where you can go to unlock a lot of really great insights about a specific member in your community. This is where you'll see at-a-glance key information about a member, including their organization, location, bio, any attached social identities, tags, and more.

You can see similarly rich information about the organizations that are active within your community, including the community members from the organization and their most recent activities.

Together, these profiles enable you to "pulse check" your community's health and prioritize your own daily actions.

2. Member Activity Timeline

Looking at a member’s Activity Timeline can unlock key information about the member and helps community builders better understand certain moments such as when the member entered the community, what events or activities they’ve engaged in, where they may have started to drop off (and when they reengaged), and much more.

ℹ️ Helpful Hint: Looking for a specific activity source among several activities? Use the dropdown filter to show exactly what it is you're interested in.

Activity Summaries

The boxes across the top give you a quick view of the member over the past three months. 

Recent Activities shows the latest recent activities so you can see them without needing to scroll through the Activity Timeline. 

Activity Hotspots allow you to see the “location” of the member’s activities, whether that’s in a specific Discord or Slack channel you’re tracking, or if it’s in a specific GitHub repository, and more.

‍Member Activity by Source is a figure that gives you a more graphical representation of the member’s presence over the past three months. You can track increases and decreases in activity and determine if it’s time to act to get them engaged again in the community.

The member activity timeline enables you to see a member's activity across platforms - saving you time context switching between social media platforms.

3. Leaderboard

Who’s leading your community?

Navigating away from the member profile and over to the Reports page, you can select the “Leaderboard” tab to get a birds eye view of the members of your community who are making the biggest impact and engaging the most.

This is especially useful for Orbit users who are building out an ambassador program, for example, or adding another tier for extra-engaged community members.

By taking a look at the Leaderboard, you’ll immediately see those who are engaging in the highest number of community activities over your desired amount of time.

For ambassador program building, community builders can use the Leaderboard to check on any new up-and-coming leaders in the community.

ℹ️ Helpful hint: Be sure to take advantage of the Filters box in the upper left-hand corner, where you can further zero in on your community leaders. Filter by location (region, country, and city), organization, activity type, and more.

At any point — you can click on a member’s name to gain a deeper understanding of the individual member as a whole. This will take you to a more detailed view of that member’s activity over time, where they’re most active, and what types of patterns or trends may be uncovered.

The leaderboard enables you to tailor your activities to the most active and engaged members. These are people who will likely give product feedback and can really help shape the future of their product. If somebody falls off the leaderboard, you can prioritize activities to get them back on track.

4. Tags to Segment your Community

Tags are super useful because they help you understand the segments of your community, and you can more easily filter your reports based on this.

Let’s look again at the example of a community builder building out an ambassador program within their community. 

How can that community builder understand who the rising stars are when surrounded by the many activities of the known and established members?

Spoiler alert: the answer is tags.

Let’s say the first four of these community members on the Leaderboard have already been tagged with the “ambassador program” tag. 

ℹ️ Helpful Hint: Members can be tagged on their Member Profiles or on the Members Table.

Now if you check out the Leaderboard, and select “Filters” > Tags > Advanced Member Tags, we can exclude the “ambassador program” tag so that we only see the Leaderboard without the pre-existing ambassador program members.

Note: If a tag has just been added, there may sometimes be a delay of a few minutes before it is pulled into the Advanced Member Tags filter. 

Now we can see community members who have not yet been added to the ambassador program that we can start to review:

Tags really help you to slice and dice your community based on key community components that make it easier to sort, analyze, and report on key data later.

5. Reports

For this last example, we’ll dive further into Reports. Let’s say you’re planning a distributed number of meetups based on certain locations where your community is active. 

The problem, as a community builder, is that you can’t be in all places at once (at least, not yet). 

So, this could be a great opportunity to reach out to leaders in your community to see if they’d be interested in hosting a local meetup on behalf of your community.

Now, how do we go about finding who to reach out to?

First, let’s take a look at where our community members are most active. We can see this in one of the figures listed on the Reports > Pulse page:

OK, so San Francisco, London, New York, and Austin seem to be the top four players here. Let’s take a look at San Francisco.

If we head back to the Leaderboard and filter by Location > City > San Francisco, we can see we have three potential community leaders we might be able to reach out to about hosting a community event:

Then it’s just rinse and repeat for the other cities and get to planning the overall theme of the meetup! 

Overall though, the reports are there to measure your impact. They enable you to understand how specific activities change your community, as well as show your ROI to executives.

So there you have it – a few handy ways that Orbit can tell you about your community, so you can uncover insights to grow your community and improve the member experience.

If you haven't already created a free Orbit account, create one now and dive right in.

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