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  • Writer's pictureJames McGhee

Community Hub

Creating a home from your community


Introduction

Every product on Steam has its' own unique Community Hub. By default a game's Community Hub is set live when your game release state is set to "Coming Soon". As always its best to start with Valve's own official documentation on so be sure to read over Steam Community (Steamworks Documentation) then come back and lets explore the topic deeper! It's through the Community Hub you will communicate with your clients and includes numerous channels to do so. In general your Community Management team should treat the Community Hub as the root of your community. This is the generally the first contact you will make with a community member and very often the only channel of contact you will have with most users.


Announcements

Events and Announcements Tools (Steamworks Documentation) The first and most commonly used feature are Steam Announcements. The most recent announcements are displayed on your Store Page as well so take care when crafting them and understand that an announcement is 100% a marketing tool. Through the News tab in the Community Hub players can review all of your announcements along with any syndicated new about your product. Use Announcements to alert your community to significant events like patches, new releases, events and more. Each announcement can be rated and includes a thread of comments.


Forums

Steam Community (Steamworks Documentation) A classic forum where you and your customers can openly communicate. You will find this is a common place for users to come for 1st level support, to ask pre-sales questions and to of course a first stop for supporters to cheer you on ... and detractors to chew you out. Its very important to manage and moderate your forums well as the forum history helps set the tone of conversation for new and returning users. User's access your forums through the Discussions tab in the Community Hub. You can create various channels and groupings to organize the forum and can promote team members as moderators.


Streams

Live Streaming (Steamworks Documentation) Steam is a streaming tool and platform that requires no additional tools or setup. Your players can easily stream them selves playing and you can host or promote streams of your own to be featured on your store front. Streams in corelation with key events can be a powerful way to engage and build your community and being Steam its all obviously highly integrated with your storefront and other Steam features. Users can access a list of all available streams of your game from the Broadcast tab.


Group Chat

Live Streaming (Steamworks Documentation) Group Chat is a as its name suggests a chat (text and voice) for your game. The feature is under utilized owing largely to how hidden it is. "Group Chat" can be joined from 1 small hyperlink on your Community Hub All (home) page located in the upper right of the screen. The feature is part of Steam's "Friend Chat" and has been recently updated. Technically the feature is also available in the Steam API meaning you could show your game's "Group Chat" in game sadly Valve has not updated the Steam API to use the new Friend Chat system so the "Group Chat" you see in game is separate from the one you see in the Steam client nevertheless it is useful in game as a "Global Chat" in some use cases and useful in Steam client for some communities in particular games with a real-time social element.


Videos

Live Streaming (Steamworks Documentation) Users can link content they have uploaded to their YouTube channels for your game and it will appear in the Videos tab. This can be quite useful for finding reviews of your game right from the Steam Community Hub. Make sure your marketing team is aware of this feature if you use an "influencer" style marketing approach it would be important to insure any related videos are also linked in your Community Hub. To upload videos you need to open Steam, and select Content under your profile ... that is click your name as it appears in the main menu and select Content


Guides

Steam Community :: Guides Players can create and publish guides for your game and find guides published by others (or your self) through the Guides tab in the Community Hub.

Screenshots

Steam Screenshots (Steamworks Documentation) Players can upload screenshots and will be invited to do so at the end of every game session where a screenshot was taken. Screenshots appear in the Screenshot tab.


Artwork

Steam Community :: Guides Players are free to upload all manner of things from cosplay to drawing and memes. The only requirement from Valve is that the content is remotely related to the game its tagged to.


Workshop

Steam Workshop (Steamworks Documentation) If you have enabled workshop for your game the Community Hub will display a Workshop tab.


Reviews

User Reviews (Steamworks Documentation) Users can use the Reviews tab for a more complete and searchable view of your app's reviews. Reviews are one of the most important aspects of your community hub and so we have dedicated a whole article to the topic here!

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