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Today you’re going to learn the fastest way to get your Circle community up and running fast.

You might be wondering how many space you should start with? Or how long is it going to take to setup your community?

Maybe you’ve seen some communities with dozens of spaces and feel overwhelmed at where to start. They can get complex quickly.

Not to worry — we’re going to focus on the basic necessities you need for day 1, and then you can expand from there as your community grows.

Use this guide as inspiration for your setup, but feel free to change and adopt it to your needs.

Remember: Done is better than perfect! The most important thing you can do is launch QUICKLY and get members participating in your community. 

It’ll become obvious what the next steps are to improve your community over time. You don’t have to figure everything out ahead of time. 

Otherwise, you’ll get stuck in analysis paralysis and delay yourself from launching

So take action right now!

SPACES 💬

Every community is different, but they share similar commonalities. 

Take these ideas below as a suggestion, not a law. Your setup most likely won’t look 100% exactly like what I show below.

Here are some of the common spaces you might consider starting with:

  1. Start Here space
  2. Introductions
  3. Discussions
  4. Events
  5. Library content

Start Here 🏡

Recommended post permissions: Admins only

Creating a clear onboarding process is key to creating high engagement from day 1.

You do not want someone’s first reaction after they join to be ‘now what am I supposed to do?’

New members should immediately arrive in your Start Here space to start the onboarding process and learn what steps to do next.

You can include a video that welcomes them to the community, files to download, or links to the next step like introducing themselves to the rest of the community members or watching the first lesson of a course.

Introductions 👋

Recommended post permissions: All members

Communities are about people right? This space gives members a dedicated place, separate from other conversations, to tell the rest of the community about themselves.

Where they come from, why they joined, what they are looking to get out of the community, what help and support they need, who they serve, what makes them unique, etc.

This space helps you the owner better understand your audience, and gives your audience the ability to quickly meet and connect with other members.

Discussions 💬

Recommended post permissions: All members

A must have for every community is a place to talk.

Rather than thinking up all the different things you community might talk about and creating spaces for each one, a best practice is to start with fewer spaces and see if there becomes a clear need to break the conversations into two different spaces.

Events 📅

Recommended post permissions: Admins only

If you host synchronous live events, whether online or in-person, you’ll want an Events space.

Events make it super easy for everyone to be on the same page and not miss events due to things like

  • Got the time zone wrong
  • Didn’t have a event saved to my calendar
  • Couldn’t find the join link
  • Forgot about it

Library spaces 📚

Recommended post permissions: Admins only

Common examples of library spaces:

  • FAQs
  • Courses
  • Announcements
  • Podcasts / video playlists
  • Curated lists of resources

Library spaces are not highly active spaces. These are curated areas that you setup once and usually won’t change too much. 

The point is to organize content that you want members to be able to easily find and consume.

So it’s important that you do not let members create posts in these spaces. Bonus points for making the library spaces look visually different than your other discussion spaces.

Bonus Article → Learn the 3 ways to display your content

SPACES RECAP 🗒️

⭐ Pro tips on space design:

  • Start with the fewest possible spaces and create more as needed, not in anticipation
  • Put the most commonly used spaces at the top and least used at the bottom
  • Use the clearest, simplest names possible. Clear > Clever.
  • Avoid having overlap between spaces. You don’t want members confused where they should be posting content.
    • For example, don’t create four spaces like this:
      • Get help
      • Feedback
      • Discussions
      • Share your wins
  • Permissions – who can create new posts?
    • Below I’ve listed the common recommendation for each space, but it really depends on how your community works! So feel free to start with mine and change as necessary.

SETTINGS ⚙️

Key decisions for new communities:

  • Is my community totally free and public, locked and private, or a hybrid of both?
    • Totally open or totally closed are easy setups — hybrid is a little more complicated.
  • Do I want my members to receive notifications for all new posts in these spaces?
    • You set the default settings by space, but members can over ride them in their personal Notifications preferences.
  • Which spaces do I want my members to be able to create content in?
    • You’ll select which spaces are ‘discussion spaces’ (anyone can create content) vs ‘library spaces’ only you the owner can create content.

YOUR TURN 👇

What spaces do you consider essential for the start of your community?

Share a screenshot or walkthrough of your community setup below! 

About the Author Jordan Godbey


Jordan is the founder of GrowthCommunity and Certified Circle Expert.

He's built an online course from $0 to over $1m/year and now works with experts to help them build thriving learning communities that create tangible transformation.

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