How to maximise Discord server growth

Written by Aidan Wilson

Anyone can announce the title of their new album. Conan Grey wanted to turn the reveal into an event that would get fans buzzing.

To create excitement and anticipation for his hotly-anticipated third album, the star behind platinum-selling singles Maniac and Heather turned to his most passionate superfans where they love to hang out: his Discord community. Conan and his team created a scavenger hunt that galvanised Discord members to play along and unscramble the new album's title, making fans feel like part of the moment and deepening an emotional connection to the new record before they'd even heard a note. This is a perfect recipe for growth, getting more people into a community.

The album, Found Heaven, comes out April 5. Awareness and anticipation is already off the charts, as shown by the conversation among superfans in the Discord server Conan and his team run with a little help from Levellr.

The Found Heaven title teaser campaign was a textbook example of how to grow a community. And the results were huge.

In 24 hours we saw:

  • 38% member growth (10,549 > 14, 561)
  • 5,600 people visited the server
  • 20,354 messages sent
  • 21,568 emoji reactions
  • 500% engagement increase

We asked the experts at Levellr to explain how any artist, sports team or brand of any kind can supercharge a Discord community and send growth skyrocketing. Here's some of their insights, tips and growth strategies for the most creative ways any brand can grow a community.

Build buzz with LTEs (limited time events)

Conan Grey's album teaser is a perfect example of the value of constructing a moment. A limited time event electrifies your members. Word of mouth is the biggest motivator for people to take action, and events like this create a sense of urgency through the fear of missing out. An event can be centred around new releases, product updates or seasonal events - any brand can inspire existing fans and attract new ones with this kind of campaign. Aidan Wilson - Product Marketing Manager

Promote everywhere

As obvious as it may seem, it's important to promote - and continue promoting - your community across other social platforms and marketing touchpoints. Post an Instagram story hyping up the value of joining. Include the sign-up in a mailer. Put a link front and centre on the official website. Catch fans wherever they encounter the artist or brand, and draw them in with a consistent message repeated across platforms. Andrew Zarzeski - US Music Account Manager

Reward fans

Share your unique Discord link on other platforms, and encourage your fans to do the same. Offer incentives like exclusive access and special privileges for members who bring in new members. This organic cross-platform promotion not only boosts your Discord's reach but also strengthens the sense of community ownership among high-frequency users (HFUs). Taz Sharp - Music Lead

Collaborate with other brands or influencers

Is there a fan server celebrating the same subject as your community, or a similar server with an adjacent audience? Reach out to other communities, brands and popular influencers to run cross-promotional campaigns. Set up a shared event, quest or 'mission' that requires being in both Discord servers, or host an event together. Cross-server campaigns are a great way to tap into new audiences. Elliot Webb - Community Partnerships

Bring in guest stars

Inviting someone from outside to come in and speak to your community can draw their audience with them. Either way, simply providing this kind of extra value to your community attracts more people to join. Aidan Wilson - Product Marketing Manager

Advertise your community

Not everyone has an established audience when just starting out. If there isn't a big enough social media following to successfully launch a server, an alternative option is to run an ad campaign with clear creative, a clear objective, and a reason for fans to join. By utilising our referral links, you can track who joins the server from which ad format and which placement, which then informs future growth campaigns. Megan Freimann - Music Account Manager

Embrace multi-lingual channels

Extend the conversation to fans with different languages and in a range of locations. How many people stay away from a server because they feel they don't belong or aren't able to interact with everyone there? Don’t leave those fans out in the cold. Create multi-language channels based on audience demographics, opening up an entirely new pool of the community. Elliot Webb - Community Partnerships

Keep things fresh

Keeping a server fresh is key to the growth of a Discord server. Regular server facelifts, especially following new updates and feature releases, ensure the server always feels like an exciting place to be. By consistently updating the server's appearance, features, and functionality, you can attract and retain members who are drawn to an active and dynamic community.

For example, Conan Grey added a new reward to incentivise fans to sign up for his mailing list, which captures emails in-house for an artist and their team independent of whatever platforms fans use. Conan's verified role reward is a badge of honour among fans that can only be unlocked by signing up to the mailing list, sending hundreds of fans to submit their email in just a few hours. James Taylor - Community Manager

Collaborate with Levellr to smash your KPIs

At Levellr we work with a range of clients in multiple industries and sectors, from music artists like Conan Grey and Fall Out Boy to global brands like Starbucks. Our community management expertise and simple but powerful tools turbocharge Discord, creating thriving and growing communities that drive tangible marketing ROI and monetisation value through meaningful emotion connection.

Conan Grey found a way to prime his community for Found Heaven. Contact Levellr today to find out how you can found a community which works for your brand.