The Webplatform Docs blog /blog/ is one of pillars of the communication strategy for WPD. Other communications resources include press releases, tweets, and conference presentations. The blog is unique in this list in that it acts as a central, searchable archive of announcements and other material. As such, we much be careful to plan the content, its tones (which will vary depending on the goal at hand), and the editorial calendar for blog posts.
Submitting blog posts
Any registered user of Webplatform Docs can submit an idea for blog post, and all members are encouraged to do so. Acceptance of the blog post is at the discretion of the person maintaining the editorial calendar, though, as submission levels may outpace the need to publish. Each blog post must be approved by at least one member of the community who is not an author of that blog post and must adhere to the editorial guidelines of WPD.
Types of and reasons for blog posts
The types of blog posts, the people who write them, and the tone of each post should vary by the goal for that particular post. We should not blog for the sake of blogging; rather, each entry should have a specific goal. The editorial calendar should contain a good balance of the different blog types and should reach out across the spectrum of our community. Some of the blog post types and reasons for them include:
- Announcements of key milestones and events in order to ensure broad distribution of communication.
- Periodic status reports to show off the great things WPD is accomplishing in order to grow the size and strength of our community.
- Calls for action from the community to galvanize effort at a global scope.
- Marketing and promoting materials about Web Platform Docs to clarify the project’s intent with a single, authoritative voice.
- Interviews or showcases of people of note to provide opportunities to mentor and to learn and to grow community through seeing that we are all web developers at heart.
- Tutorials or tips and tricks to promote learning throughout the community and/or drive awareness of existing or new content.
- News and summaries of developments in the Open Web Platform (including publication of specifications, implementations of new features, and cool demos) to help web developers maintain a cutting edge…
Supporting blog posts
WPD uses a number of social media channels to promote a blog, including Twitter, Google+, and Facebook. WPD encourages other members of the WPD community and the community at large to repost these in their favorite channels or create their own messages to tell the world about a post. Coordinating messages in time, substance, message, and market increases the impact of the effort.
Creating a blog post
You can create a blog post in a text editor and deliver the content to the person coordinating the blog. If you expect to create more than a single blog, you can request permissions to the blog authoring system (WordPress) in WPD. If you have permissions, you must log in before you can create or edit a blog. The link to sign in is in the Meta block on any blog page, at the bottom of the list of months in the Archive section. Once you log in, you are directed to the WordPress dashboard. Click the Posts link and icon, and you can edit or create new posts from there. Note that each blog post must be approved by at least one member of the community who is not an author of that blog post before it is published.
You know the parable: if a tree falls in the woods and nobody sees it, does it make a sound? Well, we want the effect of our announcements to be deafening. Once you see your blog post published, try to use these mechanisms to get the word out:
- Tweet a link (or have someone tweet) from @webplatform (~6k followers), using a Piwik tracking url
- Retweet from @w3c (~60k followers) and other Team accounts and partners (e.g. members, stewards, etc.)
- Retweet again in a different timezone cycle (or make follow-up tweets)
- Engage people who ask questions or make comments on Twitter
Calendar of blog posts
Creating a calendar of blog posts is a bit tricky—we want to keep the line of communication fresh and ongoing, yet we should not dilute any one message with a torrent of other content. The blog should contain at least one new post per week, generally a few more. The calendar should have a good mix of the types of content listed above, but we should also weight posts to the types favored by the community through feedback, volume of readers, and rating.
WPD will use a centralized editorial calendar, (https://www.google.com/calendar/embed?src=gqaik6l023aodhh4m24qapctpg%40group.calendar.google.com), to make sure that the entire community can see upcoming blogs in context with other WPD events. To give blog authors and editors an at-a-glance view, the blog editorial calendar is also maintained on this page and is maintained by a single coordinator. That person will coordinate submissions so that they are spaced out in a reasonable fashion. He or she will solicit blog posts to keep the calendar amply supplied with types of posts to be published at a pace that meets the community’s needs.
|??, 2014||Implementation tables||Doug||proposed|
|30 May, 2014||Doc sprint, Dusseldorf||Jay Meissner||published|
|9 April, 2014||New home page||Jen Simmons||published|
|4 March, 2014||WPD Doc Sprint, Fluent conference||Julee||published|
|26 February, 2014||WPW, week 3. What kind of developer are you?||Julee||published|
|17 February, 2014||WPD Doc Sprint, Fluent conference||Julee||proposed|
|7 November, 2013||Seattle Doc Sprint, U of Washington||Eliot||published|
|18 October, 2013||Doc Sprint, Amsterdam & 1st Anniversary||Scott Rowe||published|