A Founder's Guide to Community and a Gentle Introduction to Neural Radiance Field (NeRF)

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Aug 14, 2023

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A Founder's Guide to Community and a Gentle Introduction to Neural Radiance Field (NeRF)

Introduction:

Building a successful community and understanding the concept of a neural radiance field (NeRF) may seem unrelated at first glance. However, upon closer examination, we can identify common points and insights that can help us better understand both topics. In this article, we will explore the key elements of community-building and NeRF, and discuss how they can be aligned with business objectives and optimized for success.

Building a Sense of Belonging:

The foundation of any community is the creation of a sense of belonging. People need to feel connected, safe, and included to actively engage and contribute. In the context of community-building, this is often referred to as the SPACES model: Support, Product, Acquisition, Contribution, Engagement, and Success. These elements play a crucial role in driving community growth and aligning it with business objectives.

Aligning Community with Business Objectives:

To effectively align a community with business objectives, it is important to identify the specific goals that the community can drive. The SPACES model provides a framework for understanding these objectives:

  • Support: Creating spaces for customers to answer questions and solve problems for each other.
  • Product: Creating spaces for customers to share feedback and ideas about the product.
  • Acquisition: Building programs that help grow the customer base.
  • Contribution: Enabling members to contribute content, services, or value to the platform.
  • Engagement: Connecting customers based on their common interests to increase retention.
  • Success: Enabling customers to teach each other how to better use the product and be successful in their careers.

By understanding these objectives, businesses can tailor their community-building efforts to effectively drive growth and success.

Stages of Community Building:

The community-building process evolves as a business progresses through different stages. In the pre-product-market-fit stage, the focus is on collecting feedback and insights to solve customer problems. At this stage, the community objectives are usually centered around acquisition and engagement. As the customer base grows, the focus shifts to support and success, aiming to provide ongoing assistance and value to customers.

Ownership of Community:

In the early stages of a startup, it is common for one of the founders to take ownership of the community. This allows for a hands-on approach and close interaction with customers. When hiring the first community member, it is crucial to look for someone with a genuine curiosity for the community's topic. This curiosity will drive engagement and a deeper understanding of the community's needs.

Characteristics of a Community Hire:

When hiring for a community role, it is important to consider more than just the ability to drive engagement. Community professionals often function in operational capacities, ensuring the smooth running of community programs. Look for individuals who can balance people skills with operational efficiency to create a thriving community.

Creating Community-Level Goals:

In addition to aligning community goals with business objectives, it is essential to set specific community-level goals. These goals will guide the programs and initiatives that connect community members. The 7Ps of community—People, Purpose, Place, Participation, Policy, Promotion, and Performance—provide a framework for designing and evaluating community programs.

Launching a Community:

Launching a community is akin to hosting a party. It is important to start small and create a strong foundation before scaling up. Inviting a smaller group of founding members allows for the shaping of the community culture and ensures a curated experience. Founding members should be encouraged to seed quality content and conversations to set the tone for future members.

Scaling a Community:

Once the community is established, it can be scaled up to accommodate more members. However, it is crucial to maintain the initial quality and engagement. Starting with 10 to 50 members and encouraging them to participate regularly and provide valuable content can lay the groundwork for a successful community. As the community grows, new members will observe and replicate the behavior of the founding members.

Actionable Advice:

  • 1. Start small and focus on quality: When launching a community, prioritize quality over quantity. Begin with a small group of founding members who can set the tone and culture for future members.
  • 2. Foster engagement and contribution: Encourage community members to actively participate and contribute valuable content. This will create a sense of belonging and drive the success of the community.
  • 3. Continuously evaluate and adapt: Regularly assess the community's performance based on activity, value, and belonging. Make adjustments and improvements to ensure the community remains aligned with its goals and objectives.

Conclusion:

Building a thriving community and understanding the concept of NeRF may seem like separate topics, but they share common elements such as the importance of engagement, contribution, and aligning with specific objectives. By following the principles of community-building and leveraging the insights from NeRF, businesses can create vibrant communities that drive growth, success, and innovation. Remember to start small, prioritize quality, and foster engagement to build a community that stands the test of time.

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