13 Fun and Quirky Ideas to Ignite Your Online Learning Community (PART 3)

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    As our blog evolves, we want to connect with our readers and get YOU involved in the process.  Feel free to e-mail gena@bloomfire.com to suggest topics that interest YOU!

    We’ve broken down our list of 101 Quick Ideas to Ignite your Online Learning Community (click on it to see the full list!) into bite-sized chunks that are easier to digest.  We are offering you a little taste of the seven part series that provides tips on igniting passion and sparking conversation in your personal online learning community.

    Prizes and Recognition

    So you have a contest, but what’s the prize? How do you keep the real motivation for the contest (growing the learning community) in sight? Here are some ideas to get you started.

    Leave early Friday – We think the absolute best reward is time off. Why? Because everyone wants it and it gets noticed:
    “Where did Jan go?”
    “Oh, she won the Early Bird Award this week.”
    “Really? How’d she get that?”
    “(Insert lengthy explanation of your learning community and how sweet it is here)”
    “That’s swell—I’ve gotta check that out!”

    Long lunch – If going home early ain’t so fun (chores, to-do lists, errands, etc.), offer a couple of extra hours in the middle of a normal day for some shopping, napping, movie-ing, skydiving, or massaging.

    Flip camera – Although it might be a little pricey (oh wait, maybe not…there’s a PURE Digital Flip going on eBay for $76.10 with 8 hours and 46 minutes left), we think it’s the perfect reward because it can help community members create even more valuable content. Sometimes, you just need to give them the tools and get out of their way.

    Lunch for the department – “Hey gang, the catered lunch is courtesy of Jeff’s contributions to the learning community. Make sure you thank Jeff.” Jeff feels great. The learning community looks great. Win/win.

    Preferred parking – It’s a simple thing that almost costs nothing, but everyone walks by it every day and wishes they were parking there. And make sure people know how they can get that spot—scribble a note with some sidewalk chalk.

    New size B, graphite-framed, fully loaded, custom-painted Herman Miller Aeron office chair –Take a “company-issued” item and kick it up a notch. Or take it down a notch—maybe a $20 exercise ball is what people want.

    Good cause – Do good for doing good. Give to a charity. Perhaps pledge $1 per post with the top contributor deciding which charity the money goes to. Or maybe your team has a tradition of doing an annual service day. Let the top contributor decide which charity to support.

    Massage – 15-minute massage for each post to the learning community. Put a massage chair in a public place and wait for the line to appear.

    Casual Mondays – You’ve heard of casual Fridays, but jeans would get noticed if worn on a Monday (hint – you want that to get people talking about the learning community).

    Chocolate – Enough said.

    Chocolate strawberries – Ok ok, I know that was a cheap way to add an idea. I’ll include a legit one and we’ll make this list 102 ideas.

    Raffle – Each post receives one raffle ticket for a weekly/monthly drawing.

    Throw a party – There are fewer things more visible than a poppin’ party. Throw a party for the top 20 contributors in the group/team/division. These are like-minded individuals (hint – this would be a good time to launch a special initiative)

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