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How to invite people to your community site group

May 3, 2013 by Alberto González Talaván   Comments (0)

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I would like to briefly explain different options to invite users to a group, as it may not be completely evident the first time.

There are two main mechanisms to invite users through the system. You can also use other external mechanisms to invite people, which lately is my preferred choice. As evident as it may sound, the first thing that we need to take into account is that whoever wants to join a group needs an account in the site. Depending on that, we have different options:

  1. The 'Invite users' link in the left-hand menu inside the group. This option is only valid if the people you are targeting (1) already have accounts in the site, and (2) you have linked them as contacts/friends. A selection tool will appear with all your contacts so you can select the people you want to invite, and include a brief note explaining why you think they could be interested in joining the group.
     
  2. The 'Invite friends' link in the FRIENDS/CONTACT section. This is a good option if the people you are targeting don't have accounts in the site and you want to automatically link them as contacts/friends once they become members. You need a list of email addresses and a text explaining why you think they could be interested in the group. As part of that text, you should clearly state the (1) URL of the site, (2) how to create an account on the site, (3) how to get to the group page, and (4) how to join the group.
     
  3. Through an external mechanism. Sometimes good old email can do a very good job. You will probably have to describe the same procedures as in points 1 and 2.

For the third option, this is an example that I have recently used:

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[First, a brief paragraph describing the group and why we are inviting the person]

The group has now being created in the GBIF Community Site. If you are interested in joining the group and you are already a member of the site, please log in and then click on the link below to go to the group page:

http://community.gbif.org/pg/groups/XXX/

Once there, use the 'Join group' link in the left-hand menu to join the group.

 Image capture highlighting the 'join group' link

If you are not member of the site, please go to the main page http://community.gbif.org/ and create an account using one of the options provided (regular, Yahoo or Google). Then you can click in the group page and follow the instructions above.

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This brief explanation should be enough for most of the people, while they will still have your email in case they find trouble following the instructions.

Please share your experience inviting people to groups as comments to this blog post!