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We are starting a free no-advertising B2B community content site. I'd like to set some goals for development of that site based on what others have learned in their own businesses.

I plan to drive traffic to the site through LinkedIn sponsored updates and non-obnoxious retargeting, and hopefully the ads will be compelling enough to make people visit, hopefully the content will be compelling enough for a subset of visitors to sign up as a subscriber and hopefully a subset of them will become active users who pose questions, comment, and contribute in other ways.

I'm glad to have found engagement metrics here on the SE, but have not found growth metrics. How quickly can we see hundreds of weekly uniques? How quickly can we see hundreds of active members?

Thank you for any pointers to other sites/threads I may not have yet discovered.

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  • How quickly can we see... I'm afraid that depends on too many factors that we have no idea of, since we don't know your site, marketing, etc. Comparing with other online community (the examples you ask for) has only value when these have a lot in common with your site - again, we have no idea about that. That makes this question unanswerable.
    – user732
    Nov 30 '16 at 7:45
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It is one of those questions which are incredibly hard to answer adequately due to the vast amount of unknown factors and - to some degree - the element of luck. You should ideally experience a traffic proportionate with the amount invested in advertisement and overall activity promoting your community, though this is not necessarily a given. It sounds like you aim to offer an informative and appealing service, but without further details it is near impossible to give even rough estimations based on similar websites. My best suggestion would thus be to study growth on existing websites offering similar service(s) and, if possible, analyze how they achieved that.

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  • I used to work with an attorney whose answer to every question began with the phrase "It depends." I am already actively reaching out directly to companies who seem to be doing a good job with community building. Was looking to this forum for some data. If you have data like this you'd be willing to share about your own site, I would be happy to discuss directly. Thank you. Dec 5 '16 at 18:24
  • Hi Stephanie. The reason for my initial hesitation with providing data is simply due to the fact that these things are incredibly hard to compare (especially when not knowing your focus!), though I now understand what you are looking for. I created a community focused on a number of computer games which on top of offering discussion groups and chats also had two dedicated servers available. I had connected with a dozen dedicated folks from previous communities who agreed to
    – Guy Montag
    Dec 6 '16 at 11:48
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    offer a few hours per week generating activity and testing the various features. This activity quickly attracted a handful of other players and I estimate to have had ~40-50 new players arriving on a daily basis after roughly three weeks. This created a momentum which four months later resulted in the number being consistently above 100, peaking during weekends at close to 200, with new players arriving. The number has remained above 100 since.
    – Guy Montag
    Dec 6 '16 at 11:52
  • Thank you, Guy. I have also found more information by following this thread communitybuilding.stackexchange.com/a/2657/2317 Dec 7 '16 at 15:49
  • Absolutely. The answer on that thread - 55-25-20 - seems to be very consistent with what my community above experiences. There is a core of very active and engaged users driving a lot of the momentum.
    – Guy Montag
    Dec 8 '16 at 9:50

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