The community is the core of your server. It is often the face of your server and reflects your servers "personality". Making and maintaining a thriving community is essential for many game modes. It makes the experience of playing on your server better. In addition, being a part of a great community makes it more difficult to leave the said community. Founding and creating a prominent community with your current players may be important, but it is equally important to integrate new players in your existing community, and be open-armed to new players.
In the blog, we will go in-depth as to how you can make such a thriving and great community. There are multiple ways to approach this task, some may suit you better than others, and some may not work out at all. However, you should always test them and try them out yourself. Every server is different, and every player is different!
You should always try to interact and engage your community. We can categorize interactions into two parts, competition and cooperation. Both are very different in what you do, but also in which type of community you become. One is has a competitive nature and may be perceived as toxic to some. And the latter has a more friendly nature, and values helping others.
Which of these you should go for is dependant on your server. If you are a factions server, you may want to attract a competitive community, where everyone strives to be the best, hence always logging onto your server. If you are a survival server you may want to attract a cooperative community. Where everyone helps each other out, making projects together and sharing resources and tips.
Competetive. In a competitive community, it is important to create competitions. For example, making a leaderboard for most kills, distance travelled, you name it. Upon creating the leaderboard and the competition, you will have to create an incentive to win it. Perhaps a prize like a rank, or PayPal. Or even publicity, it is entirely up to you! This will lead to players logging on frequently in order to win these competitions.
Cooperative. Cooperative communities strive to make their community a social hub for like-minded to gather and play for the greater good. It is important to engage your players. You can for example host build competitions, where the reward is a /keyall. Perhaps hosting movie nights, giveaways and so forth as well. It is important that your activities encourage player interactions.
One of the most important steps to growing a community is to make your player base satisfied and happy. Having people love your server is crucial to making a community. Imagine joining a discord server with a total of 20 users who are actively engaging in conversations and are very welcoming, all 20 loves your server and the community. It is much easier to integrate yourself into such a community and make new friends. Then imagine joining a discord server with 200 users where a message is sent every three days, and where people are just "apart" of the server. That is a community that is very difficult to be a part of and integrate yourself in.
The reason why the community with 20 users is more actively engaged than the one with 200 is most likely due to the owner focusing on satisfying a particular set of users, rather than everyone. You cannot satisfy everyone no matter who you are and what you do. Find a set of users to focus on, and try to satisfy them. In order to do this, you need to understand your users. Have ways for them to suggest features, play and chat with them regularly. This is the best way to understand what your community is missing, and any issues players have. Having a deep understanding of your users and community will give you a great advantage on how you can improve and expand it.
In the end
Your community will not start by itself, you need to get them to love your server and incentivise being online and logging on. Your community is what you make it. Read these tips and try to make the community what YOU want it to be. It is also as mentioned important to note that your community will not suit everyone. Do not get discouraged if someone does not like it, or fits in. Also take care of your current community/players, as they are and will be the foundation of your community in the time to come.