I have some observations, that shows me — a great product has a great community.
I was participating in three communities, which I name 'great', so let's start with the first one.
1. My profoundly loved home network (ISP) community
When I was 24 years old, we (me and my friends) had changed the landscape of telecommunications in our town by introducing the broadband internet access in times, when every young man was sitting on a dial-up modem. We have built the community of geeks, that was loving us, forgiving for any mistakes and service outages, because we were loving them. It was the time of BBQs full of tech speeches between close friends, belonging to both sides — the business and the customers. We were growing really fast before massive investments in the industry.
So, why this community was great? Nobody ever split customers and business, we were just geeks on both sides.
2. Impressive Terrasoft (bpmonline) community
In 2011-2013 I was implementing CRM solutions and was actively participating in vendor's (Terrasoft) conferences for partners. It was great to be there and to feel that, you know, drive of sales around you. Sure, they are relationship professionals and pretty aggressive company, so you couldn't imagine their community as geeks just loving each other.
Why they are great? They are so much organized to work toward the goal. Despite any problems with the new products they expanded the sales, enchanted new partners, charmed customers. Finally, they became the global vendor, recognized by Gartner and Forrester.
The power was soaring in the air.
3. Amazingly cool Umbraco community
The best community in the world today, believe me.
Never before, I saw so huge friendly group of people. The community consists, mostly, of the geeks on both sides of the business, loving the product and hanging out (I'm guessing what is more loved).
In a morning we run or do yoga (to sleep is the new option). During a day, we don't sell anything to each other, except the brilliant ideas. At evening, we travel on the boats, play the really huge bingo game, laugh, dance, drink, arrange games in the garden.
I am guessing how geeks, loving each other (again in my life), influence the company success, but it is. Under the impression of Codegarden conference, that is just over, it couldn't recommend anyone anything, except to join the next time, especially, if you are a web developer.