Since 2009 I am running more than 10 Ning networks, and I find and have used many tips I find on this network. Thanks to everybody who shares info here! I am always looking for ways to make my networks more user friendly.
One thing I am looking for for a long time is to make the joining a group process much easier for my members. The process of visiting all groups and to - find and - click the '+ Join Group'-button is not user friendly enough, mainly when you have many groups and many members joining who are new to Ning and have to find their way.
My main network has nearly 2.000 members (Crisisbeheersing Nederland (in Dutch), about crisis management in the Netherlands), but I have difficulties to let them join the groups they like. I don't want to spam my members with messages they don't like to receive, so I ask all members when they sign up in which groups they are interested in, so I can invite them manually to the groups they like to join, see the Profile Question below (http://globalcrisismanagement.net, in English).
Is there a way to extract the '+ Join...'-button (see the group Join-button image below) from each group and to add them to one page with '+ Join...'-buttons? I think traffic will increase a lot on all Ning networks if other creators (or Ning) know how to create this type of page!
Update: I have found a possible (temporary) solution, thanks to all the comments below! It works with mobile groups embedded in iframes (the page loads not very fast...). It works quite well on a PC.
See it here in action for the first time: http://globalcrisismanagement.net/join-and-add-messages-to-groups
Image 1: All the Groups on 1 page: Join the Groups you like (more groups make the page load slower)
Image 2: Welcome to the group! Mission accomplished!
Image 3: Extra: I gave the iFrame a height of 320px, so I can Add a message to all the groups without leaving the page.
I really LOVE this idea! I'd love to see a way to incorporate what you've done above with the profile questions! Can we get some feedback from a someone at Ning on this, please? Even if it's not possible to incorporate it with profile questions, could we have a list as described, with "join" next to every group? I'm envisioning something like Facebook has:
Thanks for your comment and this perfect example!
I think it's easy for Ning to create this option, like the Facebook example above. Ning can become a much bigger social network when they change this.
Sorry for the delayed response! I've been super busy the past couple of weeks and haven't been online much. I'm glad this example was perfect:)
What a great idea!
GOD YES, PLEASE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Pretty cool idea! :-)
I like the list idea illustrated by my friend Janettee, very nice!
I actually made a Ning "page" that looks a lot like Janettee's list on my site. At the moment, you can click the button to "Join Group" on this Group List Page and it will take you to that Group AND automatically Join the Group.
Not really much of an improvement over just letting the member click to the Group and then click Join. I could bounce the Member back to the Group List Page a few seconds after the Ning message comes up, telling them they have joined the group. Or perhaps I can do all this in a hidden pop up tab so the member doesn't have to be bothered with the page changing.
OK, enough rambling! Really just wanted to say, very cool idea!
TJ, thanks for your comment. I experienced the same problem with the Join-button: it only works on its original place.
I am really interested the Ning "page" you mention that looks a lot like Janettee's list. Can you share the code here so we can try it on our networks? It looks like it's an improvement!
I just asked Ning (Help Center) the same question, when they answer I will share their answer here.
Just made the "page" tonight, let me make it look the way I want first, its only partly completed. Wanted to test it as fast as I could, see if the concept even worked. :-)
I'd be interested in hearing about any Help Center answer you get.
Thanks and best wishes!
The Ning Help Center gave me an answer: 'I don't have a great answer for you and TJ, but his potential work sounds like it might be promising. Ning doesn't really have a way to export or plug the "Join Group" button script into a standalone page; any work to that effect would be custom stuff. However, we are at work on some redesign and revamp work across the platform, so I'll bring this idea up to our Product team to see if it's something they can consider in a future update.'
So I guess my hope in the near future is focused on other creators ;-)