What is a community?
A community is a private online site where participants regularly meet to share ideas, experiences, trends, and issues.  Many of the participants use this forum to discuss their stories and personal feelings. 

What is an example of an online community?
Let's assume for a moment that one wishes to understand diabetes and diabetes care.  Let's also assume that the sponsor of the community is a major manufacturer of consumer test kits.  A community would be created of diabetes sufferers, including those who are new to the disease, those who have had the disease for a long time, and those who are in different stages of disease progression.   The value of this community is immense.  The manufacturer of diabetes testing devices could test new concepts and product prototypes, develop a greater understanding of consumer coping mechanisms, and obtain feedback about different test products on the market today.

What kinds of research can be done with a community?
There are a wide range of research activities that can be conducted in a community.

  • Research Surveys
  • Bulletin Boards
  • Live Chats & Focus Groups
  • Brainstorming Sessions

Online communities are an exciting new way to interact with targeted buyers and people with common concerns.