In the social media world, size of your audience does matter; however, creating and cultivating a community of engaging like-minded folks is arguably more important. Communities work together while audiences listen - this is the primary difference between the two. While it it is important to have a big following, having a community of networkers to bounce ideas around with and exchange interests are what push companies forward. Sometimes it takes sharing ideas to create something really wonderful!
A community is about the brand and it’s followers as a whole. There is common ground, shared interests and networking involved. Within the community ideas and content are shared, suggestions and advice are given. Building communities on social accounts has been such a useful tool in connecting with others. On Instagram, hashtags allow users to easily connect based on a single keyword, while Facebook offers groups, private or open, as a way to interact.
An audience is focused on the brand as listeners. They tune in, trust, believe in the brands voice and they’re always listening. They count on the brand to provide them with information and trust in it wholey. Both are necessary parts to the program however communities will push each other, asks questions and move things in new directions. Design with a community in mind! The more content and members, the audience and engagement will follow.