Blog: Trending Over Last Month

The Forum Refresh Release

Today, we have begun the process of rolling out a major update for Hoop.la sites. This upgrade focuses mainly on the forums module. Let's go over the changes! 1. New Topic List Mode In your control panel for the UBB Forum module, you'll see a new setting that looks like this: The "New" topic list mode focuses on making it faster and easier for your members to browse through topics in your community. There is no separate list of categories and forums in this mode. Instead, all forums...

10 Ideas for Sparking Peer-to-Peer Engagement in your Community

Happy Friday! I've been asked a few times about how to get community members talking to each other, so I thought I'd share some ideas here. If you've had success in your community, and want to share you own tips, please comment! Use mentions to tag in other members (like Quora's ask to answer feature). If you think a specific member has the expertise to answer a question well, tag them in. This will also help surface that feature for your other members. AMA in a forum. Invite interesting...

The Difference Between a Feed and a Conversation

Social networks can be depressing . Scrolling through a "feed" is a self-reinforcing loop, and you're being "fed" the pieces of content with which the algorithm has determined you will engage. You spend your time scrolling, occasionally flicking a reaction or typing a quick comment, feeling inferior because it's not your birthday, you didn't eat at Ruth's Chris last night, and your 2.5 beautiful children haven't won the gymnastics competition. Sometimes there will be a random, intrusive...

Q&A with Briana Dodson, The Penny Hoarder

Today I've got a special treat---a conversation with Briana Dodson, Community Strategist for the Penny Hoarder Hoop.la community. It's always so great to hear insights from people who are "in the trenches," and Briana is growing something really special. Tell us about The Penny Hoarder and how it came to be. What’s your mission? The Penny Hoarder was founded on the idea of improving the lives of everyday people by helping them spend less time worrying about their finances and more time...

Preparing for the GDPR (EU Privacy Regulations)

As you may (or may not) be aware, the EU last year passed a strong set of guidelines aimed at protecting individual data privacy rights. Those guidelines are called “GDPR,” or General Data Protection Regulation, and they apply to any entity who collects or processes identifiable data from EU citizens (in short, almost everyone). There are a few primary principles: Users must be notified specifically whenever data is being collected from them. Users have the right to delete or export the data...

10 Concerts: How to Create a Community Trending Topic

On Facebook over the last couple of weeks, everyone has been sharing a list of "10 Concerts" they've attended. The idea is to include one red herring concert in the list and see if your friends can guess which is the fake one. It was an innocuous little game, very similar to other list-sharing games like "25 things you might not know about me," which made the rounds a few years ago. However this one seemed to strike a chord. Why do some conversation-starters take off like wildfire, while...

We now accept crypto payments

Here at Social Strata we see cryptocurrencies as the future of money. While we are a long way from mass adoption, we want to do our part in facilitating its use. Thus, we're pleased to announce that we will now accept cryptocurrency for Hoop.la service fees, as an optional payment type. The following cryptocurrencies will be accepted: Bitcoin, Ethereum, Ripple, Stellar, Monero, and Litecoin. We will not charge a premium for paying by crypto. Note that we do not accept crypto for FeePod...

Social Network Integration Changes

As many of you know, we recently migrated all Hoop.la sites to SSL . One consequence of switching to SSL is that some Social Network integrations may need to be updated. This is due to OAuth callback URLs which are registered for each Social Network and are used to validate the authenticity of requests made through the various APIs that enable these features. Since each Hoop.la customer controls their own Social Network integrations, you must fix the issue if it applies to your site. If you...

Online Community and GDPR - What Now?

Unless you’ve been hiding under a rock, you’ve probably heard of GDPR by now (or at least been barraged by emails notifying you of privacy policy changes from everyone you’ve ever contacted). Here at Social Strata, our main goal is to give you the tools you can use to comply with new regulations, if they apply to your community. Back in the days of the US COPPA regulation, we provided a mechanism so that you could age-check and obtain parental consent, and with GDPR we’ve followed a similar...

Facebook Integration Change

Facebook has recently changed their OAuth authentication requirements by enabling “ Strict Mode ” for all consumers. What this means, is that if your community is using Facebook as a linked Social Network, then that integration with Facebook will no longer work until you have met their requirements. For all site owners who have not integrated Facebook as a Social Network for your members, please allow your eyes to haze over and move on with your day. Perhaps throw on some music and get a...

The Secure Web Is Here To Stay!

As we announced recently , today, June 5th, we are moving all remaining Hoop.la communities to HTTPS in order to protect the integrity of them all. We are pleased to announce the conversion process has now been completed! All internal Hoop.la links have been converted to HTTPS automatically. If your community includes any resources that are not secure, browsers will display an insecure warning. You will need to manually update these resource links to use HTTPS, which could include images,...

Essential Podcasts for Community Managers

It's a new year, and that can only mean one thing. We have all tossed the clothes off the handles of our treadmills and are looking for good stuff to listen to while we meet those fitness goals. You're in luck, because I've found some podcasts that are specifically created for community managers. The Community Signal podcast is fairly new, but its host, Patrick O'Keefe, is an "OG" community manager. The podcast is nicely produced, and Patrick has access to great guests from around...

HTTPS Coming Soon To All Hoop.la Communities

Here at Social Strata, the security of our customers and their visitors is paramount. Last October we published a blog post about our offer of free Let's Encrypt certificates so that our customers can add TLS (previously known as SSL) to their Hoop.la communities, as there are several security advantages in doing so. The response was amazing, with a significant amount of customers taking that offer. Now, starting June 5th, we are proactively moving all Hoop.la communities to HTTPS in order...

Quick TIp: How to Add Graphic Badges to Member Profiles

Your community members are pretty awesome. Have you ever wanted to give them a visual reward for being so awesome? Hoop.la supports admin-editable profile fields, so you can create a Badge profile field and add flair to any member's profile instantly. (Those admin-editable fields can be used for private information too, like internal customer IDs or other "flags" you might want to put on your members.) First, create your beautiful badge graphic. Next, go to your control panel and click...

10 Point Community Tune-Up Checklist

It's the beginning of a new year, and whether your community is just getting started or has been around for years, it's always good to go into the shop for a tune-up once in a while. Here's a handy checklist you can use to make sure your online community continues to hum along throughout 2016 and beyond. 10 Point Community Tune-Up Checklist Terms of Service, legal - Have there been any changes in the last year that affect your TOS or legal position? New regulations? New lines of business?

Q&A with Colin Armstrong, Walgreens Boots Alliance

Today I'm so happy to share a great Q&A session with Colin Armstrong, who spearheaded the recent launch of a Hoop.la community for Walgreens Boots Alliance. The new YourGoodSkin(TM) brand leverages an innovative approach, deeply involving thousands of women in the creation and development of the skin care line itself. How does online community figure into the YourGoodSkin brand story? The whole brand ethos of YourGoodSkin is that it has been, and will continue to be, co-created by women.

Introducing Databases For Hoop.la

We're excited to announce the debut of a brand new content module for Hoop.la - Databases! With Databases, you can store and display structured data on your site. When you create a database, you determine the specific fields to associate for each database record. Imagine the possibilities- a database of movies, sports transactions, products, business leads. It's a great way to store and catalog information. You can create any number of distinct databases and each has its own permissions and...

Community engagement starts with a good pair of sneakers

Engagement is the Holy Grail of most community managers. And we expect to see at least a dotted line between our day-to-day activities and the engagement trend line. If engagement is flagging, first we round up the usual suspects. Is it the technology? Is it the personal preferences of our members? Did I say something wrong? Sometimes it's hard to diagnose why a particular community isn't thriving. And sometimes the roots of the problem go all the way back to before the community was...

Best practices for an influencer community

An influencer community is an increasingly important component of the marketer's toolkit. It can help you leverage word of mouth, deepen your relationships with experts and fans, and give you a space to gather insights about your product or service. But you need to be sure that you're doing it the right way, so you don't end up in hot water with the FTC (and don't destroy consumer trust of your brand). The FTC's endorsement guidelines all come down to one simple thing: don't be a snake in...

 
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