11 Inspiring Circle.so Examples: Online Communities + Courses

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Circle.so is one of the most popular online community platforms, offering everything you need to launch your own community. That is not all, though. With Circle, you can also create online courses and sell memberships.

If you’re considering using it, you’re probably wondering what’s possible with the platform. To give you an idea of the platform’s many possibilities, we have created a list of inspiring Circle.so examples.

The following examples demonstrate thriving communities and courses built on Circle and how they use the platform.

Ready? Let’s get started.

1. Circle Community

Circle’s product community helps users explore and learn about the platform’s different features. Circle uses this community to display product tutorials, host its knowledge base, make announcements, and organize weekly events.

The community is open to everyone, but some content is reserved for subscribers only. So that you know, Circle lets you create spaces to organize your community, and you can make these spaces Open, Private, or Secret.

Organize content in Circle with Spaces
Organize content in Circle with Spaces

This community also does a great job of showcasing the different platform features. From online courses and events to member directory and group chats, you can see all of them being used here.

So, it’s a great example for anyone looking to launch a community with Circle. But we recommend you join it even if you’re planning to use another community platform, as plenty of useful community-building resources are here.

2. The PodCraft Community

The PodCraft Community is run by Podcast Host and its founder Colin Gray. The idea behind the community is to educate and advise their audience on everything relating to podcasts.

What’s great about this community is that it uses various Circle features. The content is neatly organized with space groups and spaces. It also leverages the builder’s simplified approach to creating rich posts, which includes anything from various text formatting options to image, video, and PDF uploads.

One of the most prominent features the PodCraft Community uses is Events. Circle makes it easy for you to host online events, and you can make them public, private, or secret. Add to that Circle’s native live-streaming functionality, and you have a perfect recipe for hosting live events.

Events in the PodCraft Community
Events in the PodCraft Community

And if you dig a bit deeper into the community, you’ll notice that it offers a wide choice of free learning content in the form of online courses.

In fact, Circle has a built-in course builder that you can use to create structured video courses inside your community. You can use online courses to boost community engagement or even as a monetization strategy.

3. StationX Community

StationX is an industry leader when it comes to cybersecurity and IT training. It uses Circle for its online community, while the membership website is hosted on Teachable.

The community content is, for the most part, open to all the community members. In addition, StationX uses Circle’s private spaces feature to grant access to exclusive content for paying members only.

The StationX community has exclusive content and spaces for paying members
The StationX community has exclusive content and spaces for paying members

To join the community, users first need to register an account on StationX’s Teachable website. StationX uses Circle’s single sign-on (SSO) integration with Teachable to create a seamless user experience, so users can easily move between the membership area and the community.

Aside from Teachable, Circle also has SSO integrations with Thinkific, WordPress, Memberstack, Outseta, Bubble, and a few other platforms.

4. SPI Pro

SPI (Smart Passive Income) Pro is a membership community started by Pat Flynn. It focuses on everything relating to entrepreneurship.

The SPI Pro community is a great example of a paid online community where you need to become a subscriber to unlock community access. While the community landing page is built on SPI’s main website, the payment processing happens through Circle.

So that you know, Circle’s Paywall feature lets you create pricing plans and lock access to spaces based on them.

SPI’s checkout page is built using Circle Paywalls
SPI’s checkout page is built using Circle Paywalls

Additionally, SPI uses various Circle features, including Events, online courses, member directory, and peer-to-peer messaging.

5. Second Wave Dive

The primary focus of Second Wave Dive and its community is design leaders.

Like SPI, it’s a paid community that uses Paywalls to hide its content from non-members and charge for access. On top of that, it uses Circle’s Lock Screen feature to create a landing page.

Second Wave Dive’s landing page for non-members
Second Wave Dive’s landing page for non-members

When a non-member tries to access the community, they land on this page created using Lock Screen, and from there, they are redirected to the checkout page to complete the payment and unlock access to the membership area.

6. Ahrefs Insider

Ahrefs is an SEO software company that launched its community, Ahrefs Insider, specifically for its users. This is an excellent example of how to use the platform to run a product community.

Within the community, the members can ask questions, share knowledge with other members, share feedback about Ahrefs, and get news about product features.

The community is available only to Ahrefs subscribers, and to restrict access, it uses a custom single sign-on (SSO) integration to bridge the gap between its platform and its Circle community. FYI, custom SSO is only available on Circle’s Enterprise plan.

Ahrefs Insider community is linked to the main platform using SSO
Ahrefs Insider community is linked to the main platform using SSO

Another noticeable thing about the community is that they include links to download iOS/Android apps. Circle offers free mobile apps, and any community built on the platform can allow its users to access their community using them.

7. Breakthrough Facilitation

Breakthrough Facilitation isn’t a traditional community but a combination of a cohort course and a community. Its goal is to help members create more captivating virtual experiences for their audiences.

All the courses that Breakthrough Facilitation offers are available in its Circle community, which is also where all discussions and member interactions take place.

Breakthrough Facilitation runs its cohort course and community on Circle
Breakthrough Facilitation runs its cohort course and community on Circle

Circle provides all the tools to deliver cohort-based courses. Apart from the native course builder, you can create multiple spaces to manage your cohorts easily. In addition, you have other features like automation workflows and the ability to add member tags, which simplify cohort management.

Apart from this, Circle also has a native livestreaming functionality, which is ideal for delivering cohort-based courses. The option to go live lets you create an interactive environment for your participants.

8. Web Designer Pro

Web Designer Pro is a private coaching community founded by a well-known web designer, Josh Hall.

As such, it uses Circle’s live streams to manage weekly calls with its members. Conveniently, live streams are native to Circle, enabling you to record them so members who missed a live stream can watch them later as well.

Web Designer Pro uses Circle for its coaching community
Web Designer Pro uses Circle for its coaching community

If you plan on starting a coaching community, you’ll be happy to know that you can use Circle for both group as well as one-on-one coaching sessions.

Plus, Circle communities support Zapier integration, and to simplify group creation, you can create Zaps. For instance, you can set an automation rule so that whenever new members sign up, they are automatically added to a space.

9. Mastering MuseScore

Mastering MuseScore is a free online community created by Marc Sabatella that aims to teach people music using the music notation software MuseScore.

This online community has made perfect use of Circle’s content organization tools to create a clear layout of its content. It has multiple spaces featuring Announcements, Special Events, Tip of the Week, and Basic Music Theory.

Mastering MuseScore uses Circle to teach music and music notation software
Mastering MuseScore uses Circle to teach music and music notation software

The community gives a great example of how you can use Circle communities to create spaces for different purposes, including group chats, contests, and challenges.

This community also has a paid section dedicated to courses, but these courses are hosted on Teachable rather than Circle.

10. Everything Marketplaces

Everything Marketplaces is a paid online community with over 1,500 members, and its goal is to teach people about marketplaces—from creating to launching and scaling.

Since it’s a paid community, you cannot see its content without subscribing to one of its two membership plans. Once you get access, you’ll be welcomed into a thriving community.

Everything Marketplaces has two paid membership plans
Everything Marketplaces has two paid membership plans

The community has a space group to discuss various topics, including fundraising, products, and demand.

However, what’s special about this community is that it doesn’t only focus on learning but also on connecting like-minded professionals and building strong work relationships.

It also offers some unique features, including co-founder matching, a database of over 1,000 marketplace investors, a member directory, a dedicated space for sharing job posts, and member deals.

Judging by the amount of money this community has helped entrepreneurs raise so far—$210 million!—we can confidently say that Circle is working well for the Everything Marketplaces community.

11. Grateful Living

Grateful Living is a nonprofit organization, the purpose of which is to help people embrace gratitude. It is a public community where anyone can see the community content, but they must be logged in to create a post, leave a comment, or like a post.

To join the community, people must create an account on the Grateful Living website first. Upon account creation, users can log into this organization’s community using the same credentials with Circle’s SSO functionality.

Grateful Living organizes its content following a minimalistic approach. It has three space groups: Welcome, Connect, and Learn.

The Connect space group is where you’ll find the Gratitude Lounge space, where members can share their reasons for gratitude and anything that inspires them.

Grateful Living focuses on content sharing by its users.
Grateful Living focuses on content sharing by its users

The community also offers free courses to its members, while the Links section leads to the Grateful Living website.

Circle.so Examples Wrap Up

These examples of Circle communities show how versatile this platform is. Whether you want to build a learning community or a product-support community, a free or paid one, you can use Circle for it.

We hope you’ve found some inspiration in these examples. If you’d like to use Circle for your community, start a free trial by clicking the button below.

Which Circle example did you like the most? What type of community are you planning to build? Let us know in the comments below. We’d love to hear your thoughts!

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