Build and maintain your campaign blog in conjunction with community building. Community building is discussed as part of the next step. These steps are conducted simultaneously. When combined, they are the most time-consuming portion of the entire crowdfunding campaign. In most cases, these steps will take you about 9 weeks or so to do effectively.
One of the most common ways to build a community is through the use of a campaign blog. This is why we are focusing on this topic as its own step. When it comes to blog content, it is most effective to locate a few experts that are already part of your network and sent them an email with a few questions you would like them to reply to. When they reply to your email, take your questions and their answers and reformat the email into an interview post for your blog.
In addition to using this interview technique for folks already in your network, try reaching out to authors that have recently published a book on a similar topic and conduct an interview with them too. Since authors are eager to promote their new book, many will be surprisingly receptive to your offer since your post will also be a plug for their book. You may also choose to do a phone interview to capture the information.
When it comes to phone or in-person interviews, I suggest that you format the information and then ask the interviewee to review the final post to make sure that you captured their information correctly. Since the process of distilling a phone or in-person interview into text allows you to have some creative license regarding the message, all too often key concepts can be misinterpreted.
One of the things that bug me the most with journalists is that most journalists never ask for a review of their story. They just print their interpretation of the interview. When I operated a technical writing company, all the content my writers produced was reviewed and approved by the subject matter experts before it was disseminated. I think that journalists should extend this same courtesy to all interviewees. However, this has not been my experience in journalism.
Whenever I read a story that a reporter wrote after I gave them an interview, it almost always contained misinformation. In the end, I often resent the journalist for publishing incomplete or inaccurate information. In summary, treat the interview process like you are a technical writer and not a journalist.
Another effective technique to capture blog content is to use Skype to make the phone call and record it. I use a free tool called MP3 Skype Recorder to record the interview and I use a relatively cheap Yeti Blue microphone that I plug into my PC. I make the call via Skype and activate the recorder software. What I like about this solution is that it automatically switches between the caller and you so there is no need to buy a mixing board. You can hear the other party through the PC speakers or attached headphones as if they were physically sitting next to you. You can then save the recording and treat it like a podcast. You can even edit it with another free tool I use called Audacity.
If you want to turn the recording into text, you have the option of sending the MP3 file to a transcription service for a small fee. However, for a free option, you can use one of the many free speech-to-text applications to convert your recording to text. Then all you have to do is add who is speaking to the resulting text file and publish it on your blog. In fact, if you make the interview a video, applications like Zoom do a great job of creating the transcript including identifying who is speaking. Also, YouTube also does a good job of transcribing speech-to-text as well for free.
Keeping up with the blog content is a great job for one of the helpers you enlisted earlier.
Do you have a strategy to develop and maintain a campaign blog as part of your community-building activities?
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