Off-Site Meeting #2" was held to share knowledge of fan community operators.

Event Report

Following the successful first meeting, "Off-Site Meeting #2" was held online on May 26, 2021, inviting 5 persons in charge of corporate community management from 5 companies to discuss several issues in the management of fan community sites.

Background of the event

At the "Off-Site Meeting #1 " held in April, we learned about the thoughts and concerns of those in charge, and participants were pleased to hear that it was a very meaningful time. We invited new companies to join us for a second meeting on the same theme. This time, too, participants asked questions and consulted with each other, and discussions were lively.

List of participating companies
Asahi Group Foods, Ltd.Sunstar Inc.DAIWA HOUSE INDUSTRY CO., LTD.TOEI ANIMATION CO., LTD.(The number of participants was limited by lottery so that the discussion could be as open and frank as possible. Among the many requests for participation, five persons in charge of companies from the five companies mentioned above participated on the day.)



Theme1 - How should "placemaking" that fosters fans be evaluated?

The ideal fan community is one that is self-driven through active communication among users, while at the same time deepening the relationship with the company. How should the relationship be built? And how should we measure the depth and degree of growth? Each company seems to have similar concerns. One indicator that came up was the NPS (Net Promoters Score )*1, which measures the "degree of recommendation by others" of a company or service. Various discussions were held on what kind of fan marketing makes people want to share with their neighbors, and what kind of PDCAis possible by utilizing NPS.
*1 NPS (Net Promoters Score) is an indicator that consumers themselves like and recommend a brand.


A1: The NPS has been proposed to eLifefor several years and we are trying to do it for the first time this year. We would like to examine how to connect it to community operations in the future.
A2:We have been conducting behavioral analysis by linking member data from our online store, the community, and store sales data, and we are gradually beginning to see a correlation. We are analyzing this in cooperation with the advertising department.
A3:We have not yet introduced NPS, but we would like to promote emotional communication, such as users giving each other advice and helping each other with problems, in addition to helping people understand products on community sites. We believe that NPS is attractive as an indicator that cannot be measured numerically.

Dear-Natura&me, operated by Asahi Group Foods, is promoting the activation of user communication by implementing ambassador and LIVE policies from 2021.

Club Sunstar" operated by Sunstar started with the aim of creating a place to disseminate information, and currently focuses on content marketing, publishing 8-10 contents per month.

eLife Inc. in one case, a company that supports a company with a high nps proved that the higher the nps, the higher the percentage of people who purchase the company's products, and is continuously using this information. It is clear that the nps is effectively used as an indicator to measure the degree of fans of a company.

Theme2 - How to communicate well with fans?

eLife inc. at "The Community", we offer proposals tailored to the characteristics of each company based on the idea that the community should be a "place for interactive communication with fans". The person in charge shared with us how he/she devised the idea from his/her point of view.

Q:What measures or innovations are you taking to improve loyalty online?

A1:So far, we have held fan meetings for several thousand people once a year. We would like to come up with events that can be held on a smaller scale with a few or dozens of people to capture the general consensus of fans and respond to their requests. Since we have just launched the community, we would like to actively create opportunities for interaction.
A2: For the first time, we have created an opportunity for a roundtable discussion among users selected from the community. Since the number of users is limited to a certain extent, we were concerned about whether users would be honest with us, but as a result, we were able to access honest information thanks to their naked disclosures, and we believe that this was a success. We would like to link this result to our content and sales promotion.
A3: We would like to work on co-creation through the content we send out on the community site, for example, by feeding back feedback on what people think after reading articles to the next editorial meeting.
A4: We define a community site as one that listens to and absorbs the voices of users. Due to the Pharmaceutical Affairs Law, it is difficult for members to discuss products with each other, so we have established a voting function to make users' voices visible. In addition, we plan to hold live online events in the future.


Under this theme, the participants discussed what kind of communications each company is considering in accordance with the characteristics of their industries and users. The participants were particularly interested in the ambassadors' policies, and many questions were raised about the number of ambassadors, who they are, and what they ask their ambassadors to do. The answer, "We don't have a specific job title, but we look carefully at people who love the product, their passion and enthusiasm," gave us a sense of the company's sincere attitude toward its users. Many participants became positive, saying, "I want to work on it this year after hearing these examples! Many participants seemed to have become positive, saying, "I want to work on it this year!

Theme3 - It is important to involve people in other departments well

Many of the respondents also expressed that they were facing challenges in internal recognition, such as, "We just launched the community site and it has not yet been widely accepted within the company," and "In some cases, the sales representatives in charge of the field do not know about the community site.

Q:How do you disseminate your community website internally?

A1: Although it is a closed community for members only, we share information with other departments so that user feedback can be used to improve sales and services. Not only negative comments, but also positive user feedback from the community is actively utilized to improve employee motivation.
A2: It is an issue whether the operation of the community site contributes to sales, but the top management encourages understanding from a medium- to long-term perspective. The company has changed to a structure in which each brand has its own budget, and each brand is now responsible for proposing what they want to do in the community.

Digimon Partners" operated by Toei Animation is a place where users can co-create goods and various other things.

It is very important to have people in the organization who understand the importance of the community. We saw how each department is trying to raise interest by feeding back information obtained from the community to the department in charge as appropriate, and how each department is trying to be creative.

Theme4 -What is the team composition? Realities of Practice

As the discussion deepened, participants raised concerns unique to those in charge of the field.

Q:"The community is run almost entirely by one person. How often do you guys bring up content?"

A1: About 1.6 when we start up some members' resources. Since the focus is on information dissemination, 10 newsletters/month, 1 present project/month, etc.
A2: 1 person + marketing staff for each brand. 1 newsletter/month, 1 content/month, 1 presentation project/month.
A3: One person in charge of community. A3: One person is in charge of the community, and the rest are assigned to several other people as needed. One newsletter is sent out per week, campaigns and other projects are sent out every other month, and content is created irregularly in response to user requests.
A4:One person is in charge of the community e-commerceWe have prepared only reading contents, but the site is separate. 2 or more reading contents + 1 announcement per month is company-led, and we ask another partner company to write an article.

The number of people in main charge of the community averaged 1.5 as a result. Although each project has a wide variety of business types and approaches, some felt encouraged by the fact that each company operates under a similar structure.
On a related topic, a question was raised about the effectiveness of e-mail newsletters, with one participant saying, "It is important to send out e-mail newsletters to increase access. However, too many of them can be counterproductive, so you should carefully consider the timing, frequency, and content.

Participant's voice

We wanted to implement measures that would take care of the feelings of our fans in order to build long-term relationships with them, but we didn't know how to do it, and we felt that ambassadors would be a good way to foster awareness. We would like to deepen communication with our core users.

I think the NPS is a good indicator because i think it is important to look at things that don't show up in the numbers, but i didn't know how to evaluate them. I found the example of using campaigns to revitalize the community to be helpful.

I learned that the key is to increase the level of user loyalty and involvement. After listening to the many examples, I decided to actively try to put them into practice without thinking too much.

It was nice to have so many questions answered. It was encouraging to know that the participants felt the same way, even though I sometimes feel alone in my work. It was very helpful to know that it is important for the fans to keep the community going."

Organizer's Postscript - Reflections on Offsite Meeting #2

In response to the concern that "I sometimes feel that community management skills are now a special skill, and i don't know how to convey this skill to others if i were to hand it over to someone else," one person in charge of community management said, "basically, the person in charge changes in the span of a year and a half. A person in charge of the project responded, "basically, the person in charge changes over the course of a year and a half, but as long as the person in charge does his/her best to deal with the users, I don't see a problem with the change. i was very impressed by his response, "as long as KGI and KPI are consistent, each person in charge should be responsible for the operation of the site.

It is a common wish of those in charge of community operations that many people who visit the site will fall in love with the brand or product and become "fans" of it. I felt that seeing everyone who met for the first time communicate so honestly and sincerely on this common ground was the ideal form of a community manager. Thank you to all the participants for helping to create a place where we could talk in peace.

We look forward to seeing more new endeavors realized as a result of the "off-site meetings" in the future.

■Related Information List of Participating Company Projects

Asahi's Supplement DianaturaDear-Natura community site "Dear-Natura&me" (Asahi Group Foods, Ltd.)
Club Sunstar( Sunstar Inc.)
Daiwa Family Club *Owners-only website ( DAIWA HOUSE INDUSTRY CO., LTD.)
Digimon Partners ( TOEI ANIMATION CO., LTD.)

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