Hivebrite – Community Platform Review

Social media requires that business leaders start thinking like small-town shop owners. This means taking the long view and avoiding short-term benchmarks to gauge progress. It means allowing the personality, heart, and soul of the people who run all levels of the business to show. And doing their utmost to shape word of mouth by treating each customer as though he or she were the most important customer in the world.” – Gary Vaynerchuk, CEO of VaynerMedia, and author.

Creating a business is not only about designing products and content. Behind every successful initiative, there is a group of happy customers. More and more companies start to notice the importance of engaging with their target audience, hire community managers, invest in customer support.

There are many social media accounts, websites, etc., helping create a vibrant community. When starting your business, keep in mind that your community, in fact, is your business. You need to foster it, and it will inevitably pay off.

Getting involved with your audience comes with many advantages. For starters, a satisfied community member will attract more new subscribers, resulting in your business expanding. Moreover, personified connection with your community lets you constantly adjust the content, improve user experience and answer the customers’ needs. To keep a customer’s attention, you must be adaptable to change, aware of their daily needs and requirements, and in constant communication. Customer engagement allows you to show your devotion to your audience at all times and provide them with proper customer support. According to statistics, around 26% of Millennials prefer to contact the company using social media.

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That being said, in today’s article, we would like to introduce you to a community engagement platform – Hivebrite. What started as a startup became now one of the professional networks for community building. Originally designed to organize and manage alumni communities, it turned into a widely popular online community platform with offices in cities like Paris or New York.

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The success of Hivebrite lies within its politics and approach to its customers. During one of the conferences, Jean Hamon, the CEO of Hivebrite, accurately explained the nature of fostering the community and how it helped achieve success with Hivebrite.

‘We’ve learned two major lessons after working with hundreds of customers these past few years. The first one is that people create communities for a number of different reasons. You may start a community in order to build a solid base of volunteers that you can mobilize when needed, or to facilitate the sharing of expertise and knowledge, or to boost employment by matching talents with opportunities, or to collect feedback from your power-users, or to raise funds for causes – use cases are endless, and success can look different from one community to the next. The second big takeaway is that the needs of each community evolve over time. It’s often difficult to predict how your community will grow and behave and how you will want to leverage it in the long run, which creates a need for a platform with a large feature set and great user experience, but also an extremely high degree of flexibility, so you don’t have to migrate your community to another platform in the future. I believe the key to Hivebrite’s growing success is that we’re building a solution that adapts to each community, not the other way around. This newest investment will allow us to continue creating those solutions.’

We will get into every detail and try to determine if Hivebrite is really worth all that fuss. We will cover:

  • Features
  • Pricing plans
  • Real users reviews
  • Alternatives

Who is Hivebrite for?

Hivebrite.com is a widely popular website among both small and large organizations in different fields. It is being used as a Community engagement, Community management – in general, a community platform. Companies choose it for Hivebrite’s White Labeling, Personalization, and Activity Feed features.

The chart below shows that Hivebrite is popular in various business settings, from small companies to mid-market to large businesses. Representatives choose the platform from Non-profit organization management, Research And Education, Government, NGO & Utilities, Food, Entertainment And Hospitality, Consumer industries.

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Hivebrite Features

Short glossary

A CSV (comma-separated values) file is an established text file that uses a comma to separate values. Within the file, each line is a data record.

An RSS (Really Simple Syndication) feed is an internet readable file that contains information on all of the material that a website has published.

Activity/News Feed

Initiate the work plate to assist individuals with sharing and solicitation work/temporary position openings from different individuals. Permit admittance for more opportunities through the integration of outside distribution administrations.

Allow your community to share open positions or show their accessibility for a new position. They can transfer your resume and let other local area community members reach out to them. Whether they are interested in job offers or the ones announcing a job opportunity, community members can use their online organization as a tool to distribute their announcements and resumes.

Application Management

Hivebrite understands the vital role of providing your members with mobile access. Your community’s mobile app is available to download on the App Store and Google Play – easy to recognize, thanks to including your name, logo, colors, and brand.

There is also an option to make it easier for people in your community to connect. Your members may see who is near them on a gorgeous map interface thanks to Hivebrite’s inbuilt ‘Who’s around me’ geolocation feature.

Calendar Management

Organize your social events with a built-in calendar, automatically reminding you of upcoming events. Hivebrite will take care of informing your community of the time and date.

Content Management

You have complete control over all content produced by your members. Get notified as soon as new publications are available and edit or delete them as needed. Hivebrite provides you with Integrated Content Management System. You can create public menus and pages. Customize the area for your members, and from your dashboard, you may manage the material on your platform. Make some of your public pages’ content accessible to visitors. Other content can be made exclusive and only viewable to your private communities.

RSS feeds can be added to your platform to generate content (announcements, news, jobs) automatically.

Hivebrite cares about your content is always up to date. Your online community members will be asked to update their information via automatic email notifications whether they share opportunities or list their projects.

Data Management

Data about members can be imported and exported. You can import all of your members’ data, including their profiles, into your database. You can export your member data as a universal CSV file whenever you want.

When promoting an event or sending correspondence, segment your audience by group, industry, geography, or any other custom field. With the assurance that no data will be lost, you can make significant adjustments to your member database base.

Hivebrite enables you to run streamlined update campaigns that allow your members to confirm or change specific profile information without having to log in—in short, keeping their accounts up to date. Moreover, you are being informed every time someone makes an update, so you can easily keep track of any changes to your profile that you or your members make.

Discussions / Forums

Hivebrite ensures that your community will automatically receive relevant membership updates about new opportunities, news, and events. Social network integrations and one-click access to changing one’s profile ensure that your database is always up to date. Your alumni can also pick which information they want to keep private from administrators and which information they want to share with others.

The work of your subscribers can be featured on Hivebrite to obtain attention during the launch, hiring, funding, or any other critical step. Entrepreneurs are allowed to locate possible co-founders, investors, or workers, while also demonstrating the dynamism of your community. It also opens their work up to discussion and conversations.

Donor Management

Hivebrite allows you to create stunning fundraising pages and email campaigns. With a simple and easy-to-use CRM (Customer relationship management), you can easily manage your donors.

Dues Management

Membership plans can assist you in finding the resources needed to run a community. You can easily manage any form of membership plan and rights from your dashboard, whether you prefer to charge for access or additional advantages.

Email Marketing

With the integrated email marketing tool, Hivebrite enables you to automate your email marketing fully. You can create and send stunning, responsive HTML emails. Customize your email list by choosing the recipients of your email depending on a variety of factors. Hivebrite allows you to deliver weekly summaries of your community’s recent activities that are automatically generated and customized. Fully automated are also notifications and alerts sent out to your users within the app. To encourage and motivate your subscribers, there is an option to send mobile campaigns. You and your community are also provided with a branded mobile app that lets you engage with each other.

Event Management

Hivebrite lets you organize events for your community and embed them in your calendar. To inform your community of an upcoming event, create invitation emails. Send solicitations and updates to invitees based on area, industry, or any custom criteria.

Ticketing is also available to distinguish different groups using multiple pricing plans. Make accessible distinctive tickets and costs for various sorts of individuals (understudies, staff). Effectively oversee non-community participants.

Online payments are also available in a few methods. Let clients pay online through secure, popular payment gateways and easily keep track of all transactions. To gain new members and raise the popularity of your business, Hivebrite provides you with social systems integrations. Post your events on your Facebook, Linked In, and Twitter pages to boost subscriptions and participation.

Financial Management

Hivebrite allows you to develop membership plans and take payments directly from your website. You can manage lifetime memberships and recurring payments and make certain areas of your site restricted to paid subscribers.

Fundraising Management

With Hivebrite, you can encourage donations and facilitate fundraisers. Higher engagement and happiness with your community are the result of a platform that provides value to them. As the number of active members grows, so does the number of people that attend your events. And as your base of the satisfied audience grows, so do your financial streams, including membership renewals, fundraising efforts, and gifts.

You can raise money with the help of your online community. Hivebrite lets you find out which volunteers are the most engaged and turn them into donors. By seeing early warning signs, you can keep donors from falling behind and continuously collect online payments with ease.

Group Management

Communities are regularly made of numerous smaller gatherings. With group management, you can help your subscribers discover and engage with other like-minded individuals within the community. Create custom and specific categories. Groups will help you coordinate your particular organizational models, such as clubs, chapters, or industry groups. You can design a community hierarchy. Choose specific individuals of your community to lead, oversee, or direct the groups you created (chapter presidents, industry specialists). Get more help by creating group admins. Allow particular members to control their group and its community by providing them with granular admin rights.

Moreover, Hivebrite is full of additional features, including Real-Time Chat, Online Payments Processing, or Negative Feedback Management. Check out the list below to see all of the extra features.

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Thanks to very advanced APIs, you are guaranteed that all of your data is continuously up-to-date. All over. Connecting Hivebrite with several distinctive CRMs like Salesforce, Microsoft Flow, Blackbaud CRM, and Raiser’s Edge NXT is possible. You can also integrate your Hivebrite platform with a few popular social networks like:

  • Facebook
  • Google Analytics
  • PayPal
  • Stripe
  • Twitter
  • Zapier
  • Zendesk

Pricing plans

Unfortunately, Hivebrite does not provide potential customers with information about pricing plans. A few sources write about the amount of 500$/month, but to get a piece of detailed information, we advise you to contact the Hivebrite team directly. However, as a potential customer, you can sign up for a free trial. You can book a 45-minute demo version of Hivebrite and learn how to engage, manage and foster your online community.

Real user review

According to capterra.com – a popular review website, Hivebrite achieved 4.5 out of 5 on a scale of overall customer satisfaction, 4.4 for ease of use, and 4.8 for customer support. Users’ opinions allowed a few pros and cons to crystalize.

Advantages

“Friendly and approachable team. Scalable for large numbers of users.”

“Not a large anonymous company but a working relationship with a team there to support us and cares about our success and meeting our goals.”

“Excellent performance and responsiveness. Fully multilingual – we serve both an English and a French audience.”

“It is the platform that best implements the features.”

Disadvantages

“The lack of customizable options when it comes to font, color, sizing, and general edits.”

“There is a bit of a learning curve to Hivebrite, and sometimes people are hesitant to add “one more thing” to their arsenal.”

“Limited customization of reports- beta reporting module is in development.”

“Technical support is the worst of all compared to competitors. The price, while not the highest, is among the highest.”

Many customers highlighted the fact the Hivebrite is not entirely customizable, and though a good platform in general, it does pose many limitations.

‘The page builder functionality requires further refinement and enhancements, in addition to further enhancements across the reporting and analytics related to payments, email, and web. ‘

‘The lack of customizable options when it comes to font, color, sizing, and general edits. However, I believe that this is something that is being developed, so it’s really only a growing pain that Hivebrite is adjusting to!’

On the other hand, Hivebrite received many positive comments on its team management experience and features.

‘The features offered by the Hivebrite platform are very useful for both end-users and the administrator. For example, the possibility to connect with channels like LinkedIn simplifies the login for users: one less password to remember! And the simpler it is, the greater number of people will stay connected, which will facilitate the administrators’ jobs. – The interactive map and “check-ins” are excellent tools for alumni to find each other and strengthen the network. – The possibility to create chapters is one of the most important features of our network. Through the chapter live feed, alumni can discuss the popular topics in their countries or organize more gatherings independently. For administrators, this feature helps in chapter management and creating greater alumni communities around the world. But the greatest advantage of this platform is that it is constantly improving. The Hivebrite team takes every suggestion into consideration in order to develop new features that enhance the users’ experience even further. I cannot give them enough positive feedback!’

‘It is was nice to work with such an experienced partner in community management that offers not only good value for money but also offers good advice in building a professional community platform. I especially like the event user tap. Via Hivebrite, you can invite your members easily to an event, and the platform ensures smooth processing of payments. Furthermore, Hivebrite provides a platform, which completely undertakes the task of data management. If there is missing data of your members, you can easily start a campaign to collect the data you need. Since I am not an IT nerd, I really enjoy the user-friendliness and intuitive handling of the platform. Our alumni and student community are really happy about our new homepage. Especially the live feed and the weekly digest, which summarizes news, forum discussions or job opportunities, has become a must-read for every community member.’

Generally, Hivebrite is a publicly claimed platform but still has a lot of room for improvement. That being said, let’s move on to Alternatives for Hivebrite.

Alternatives

When it comes to different online community management platforms, there is only one reasonable choice – GroupApp. It allows you to engage with your audience and create a thriving community.

This online community platform stands out amongst the other websites. Functionality and completely customizable options let you organize and engage with your online audience.

GroupApp enables you to create and publish online courses directly inside of your online community. You can unify your online community with your online classes for better community support and improve the learning experience.

We want you to have complete control over your relationship with your community. We offer you the option to build an online community that you own and that is free from distractions. You can engage with your community members on your terms. Build a stronger relationship with your community and give your members a place to connect and share with each other.

GroupApp pricing plans

We provide you with three pricing plans, starting from as low as 19$ a month. You can choose between:

Starter

It is designed mainly for personal projects & hobbies for $19/month. You can create a community of up to even 1000 members and manage five community channels.

Pro

Being a more expensive pricing plan for $49/month, it was created for growing businesses & creators. Using this option, you can foster 10000 members on 15 different community channels.

Premium

Created for brands & large organizations, Premium pricing plan costs 140$/month. You can engage a much larger audience – even 100 000 people on 30 community channels.

Sell Courses & Digital Content

Make a profit by selling online courses and digital content. GroupApp gives you a platform to share and sell your own course materials in the form of PDFs, Audio, and Video files. Unlike physical items, selling digital products will endlessly increase your income. Provide your community with extra content and online courses and benefit from the same item numerous times.

One of the other GroupApp’s advantages is accessibility. GroupApp offers a mobile-friendly experience for all devices, so you and your students can engage with the community from every device. It is available for all devices and platforms and both on iOS and Android. GroupApp with ConverKit can help you engage your email list through an online community, experience, sell courses and help you build a better relationship with your audience.

You also get a bunch of additional features such as:

  • Members Profile: ‘Community directory that allows members to discover and connect with each other.’
  • Activity Feed: ‘Community activity feed that allows members to share a post, leave comments, and follow topics.’
  • Posting Types: ‘Creators and members can write a post, upload photos, ask questions, and share videos.’
  • Notifications: ‘Send in-app and email notifications to your community members with a simple click of a button.’
  • Invite members: ‘Invite members to join your community with your community invite link and email invitation.’
  • Privacy Settings: ‘Share your community with the public or set your privacy setting to members only.’
  • Paid channels: ‘Share premium content in specific community channels and have members upgrade to access it.’
  • Export Data: ‘Own 100% of your member’s data and export it at any time without any restrictions. It all belongs to you.’
  • Custom Domain: ‘Maintain a consistent branding experience and drive community traffic to your website by using your custom domain with your community.’

Final thoughts

Wrapping up, Hivebrite is generally a good all-in-one community management and engagement platform. It allows you to build brand engagement and the Hivebrite SaaS solution is the reason for them growing so rapidly. However, according to user experience, it definitely lacks customization tools and good technical support. Hivebrite has lots of potentials but still needs to work on essentials in order to satisfy more customers.

In reference to the beginning of this article, creating a thriving and comfortable community is significant and can definitely support your small business, but not an easy thing to do. However, with the right tools – a perfect platform, you do not have to worry about difficulties and struggles. Make sure you visit the GroupApp website and create and manage a thriving online community.