Excerpted from article by SEOmoz:
" It's not that SEO is dead or that links are obsolete, or whatever all that crazy talk is that's been going around. It's that there's a way to integrate all the pieces into the big picture of building a better company by building an online community around it.
There are lots of benefits to building a community around your company, but if I had to choose a few, here are my top five:
1. It will help you weather Google’s algorithms;
2. It will add equity and value to your business;
3. It will help you have purpose;
4. It will help you stand out;
5. It will put the focus on goals, not tools.
Here is a super awesome infographic and the play-by-play breakdown of each step in the process.
Whether you’re building a community from scratch, or you’re working to grow an existing one, you can use this process to get your community rolling or optimize and leverage what you already have.
[Here are only main sections of article]:
 Define your business objectives.
So before you do that, think about this:
1) What makes your company unique?
2) Why do you care?
3) What do you want to build?
4) Who do you want to build it for?
 Elect your team.
Here’s a few tips for getting the right team in place so that you can start working toward achieving your goals:
1) Understand the roles;
2) Elect, don’t just assign;
3) Work together as one, big, happy family;
 Develop your strategy.
Think about strategy in three pieces: the what, the when, and the how.
1) The what: campaigns;
2) The when: execution calendar;
3) The how: ongoing efforts.
 Empower your team.
Do not skip this step.
I repeat. This step is important.
You can empower your team for success by addressing a few simple questions:
1) Why are we doing this?
2) How much work is involved?
3) When will we see results?
 Learn your industry.
One of your number one priorities in marketing your business online is providing the best possible customer experience. And you can’t do that if you’re not learning continuously.
 Create the value.
Ok, now we’re getting to the real good stuff. Value is what your community is built upon, whether that’s “tangible” stuff like blog posts, videos, resources, and tools; or an approach, perspective, or virtue that is the basis for common ground. Value that focuses on your customer and their experience is what attracts people to your business, your brand, and your community.
Foundational content is the more static stuff on your website...
The challenge with foundational content is to listen to your customer. Observe their needs, the things in life that they struggle with, and then communicate how your products or services address those things.
Community building content is the stuff that’s more dynamic in nature and usually lives on your blog. It’s the content that is less about what you do and more about what you know.
 Share the value.
It works like this:
80% of the time, share other people’s great stuff. But don’t just retweet it or hit the share button and place it on your feed. Read it. Internalize it. And then curate it. Tell people why it’s good. This helps you learn and also keeps the focus where it belongs: on the value that you're providing for the reader.
20% of the time, share your own stuff, but make it remarkable. This is the community building stuff that we just talked about.
 Build and foster growth.
There are lots of things that you can do to foster and grow your community. Here’s just a few:
1) Get in there;
2) Embrace offline efforts;
3) Acknowledge and show appreciation.
 Measure and analyze (and communicate).
Everything you do will include testing, feedback, measurement, analysis, adjustments, rinsing, and repeating. And then, you’ve got to communicate this data to your team (and/or your client).
Keep these final things in mind:
- This is about building a brand;
- Stay grounded in your goals;
- Don’t give up."
Read full, detailed and long article here: