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Storify helps you engage visitors by making it easy to post more often

One important element in building an audience is to post a steady flow of quality content. But how can you keep up a steady flow of posts when time is tight?


One answer is Storify, which we already highlighted as one of our 5 Cool Tools. As the video above shows, Storify makes it incredibly easy to create and post a coherent story in only a few minutes.

Here are three examples that demonstrate what Storify can do for you:


#1: CROWDSOURCING FOR COMMENTARY – A couple months ago, I launched MI Marijuana News as the go-to place for news related the marijuana industry in Michigan. I am just beginning to cultivate sources, so imagine how unhappy I was last Monday morning to find that 22 marijuana growers in four counties had been raided yet I knew next to nothing. I was able to assemble a short news story from existing reporting, all of which appeared to be based on a Michigan State Police news release that I never received.

Two days later, I wanted to provide some meaningful reporting, but law enforcement was tight-lipped. Nobody was talking. By using Storify to scour Twitter, I was able to post a short article comprised of tweets from people to show that we were still on the case. My only original contribution was to write the connective tissue, the five text blocks that tie the tweets and the image together into a narrative. You can also paste a link to a news article in the Storify box under the hyperlink icon, and it will turn that article into an attractive curation you can drag and drop into your Storify.

[View the story “Medical marijuana fight in MI heats up” on Storify] or view the Storify embedded on MI Marijuana News


#2: EXTEND YOUR VISUAL REACH – The easy access to Flickr made it possible for ABC News (the Australian Broadcast Corp.) to pull together a stunning collectionon the b of images to commemorate the coldest day on record ever in Tasmania. Even though Tasmania is relatively small and ABC has significant resources, there was simply no way they had the time or money to send great photographers across the country to capture historic images.
[View the story “Icy blast hits Tasmania” on Storify]


#3 – LET OTHERS HELP YOU FIND THE BEST STUFF – Not only does Storify help you borrow content from people on social media, the Storify interface makes it easy to archive and use elements included in Storify posts – in essence, you can let other Storify users do some of your spade work for you.

Once you have a Storify account, you can save elements of stories you view on the Storify site to your private account or to your own Storify articles with just one click. If you find an appealing element in a Storify post, you can click on the + on the lower-right edge of any element and a popup window will give you the option to archive the item for your own use. The interface gives you the choice between archiving it in your private account or placing it directly into one of your Storify posts.

For example, maybe you want to do something timely on the deliberations surrounding the Trayvon Martin/George Zimmerman murder trial. There are a gazillion tweets out there, and you don’t have the time to sift through them all. Since BET is using Storify to share information with its viewers, you can check out a relevant post, knowing that they will work hard to locate the best tweets. As the link below shows, BET can help you find the perfect tweet in record time.

[View the story “Trayvon Martin” on /George Zimmerman Verdict]

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Steve Buttry: Put the crowd to work

Engaging your audience not only expands the roster of sources for stories but it also builds trust with visitors. Digital media pioneer Steve Buttry offers tips on how to use social media to build relationships with people in the community who have much to contribute.

About Steve Buttry – Steve has spent more than 40 years in the news business, including his current position as Digital Transformation Editor for Digital First Media and Journal Register Co. (Full bio)
Contact Steve at stephenbuttry (at) gmail (dot) com
The Buttry Diary
Steve on Twitter
Steve on Facebook

Bucqueroux: Create a WordPress Header in Photoshop CS6

Many popular WordPress themes offer the chance to install a custom header. This YouTube tutorial by Bonnie Bucqueroux offers step-by-step instruction on how to create a unique header to the specifications required by your theme.