….and don’t be afraid to experiement

Carla Buzasi, Editor-in-Chief Huffington Post UK, spoke at a recent GCN Speakers event. Here are 10 things we learned:

  1. All Huffington Post journalists are encouraged to be mini-marketers and actively promote their work through multiple channels
  2. Non-professional journalist/bloggers are a vital part of Huffington Post and their material can have as much (sometimes more) impact than staff articles
  3. Different channels better support different content e.g. Facebook is particularly strong for lifestyle content
  4. Use different tactics for different media. On Facebook, Huffington Post frequently post interesting photos without backward links, the lack of hard sell upfront builds interest and greater reader engagement further down the line
  5. Perhaps no surprises here but Twitter is a great place to break news and a great source for news gathering
  6. It is of course a truism but content really is king. Great content has a natural viral potential that you just can’t (well we can certainly try) replicate
  7. Have faith and trust your team. Carla is happy for staff to tweet on behalf of Huffington Post. After all if, Huffington Post trust journalists to write for the website, then they have to be trusted to speak on behalf of the organisation. Managers need to accept the risk. In the long run this freedom to respond builds stronger engagement with audiences
  8. A good social media strategy needs to be flexible. For Huffington Post the strategy  is an iterative process:  monitor – react – tweak – share learning
  9. Don’t be afraid to try new channels and tools. Experiment with new features e.g. Huffington Post’s  Picture Desk Live, Live Streaming
  10. Don’t underestimate the power of images online as well as off. Huffington Post use strong images on the home-page and throughout

And finally, Carla had one piece of friendly advice for bloggers in government: be more honest, give a bit more of yourself, show some passion!

Carla spoke without notes a presentation of this event is unavailable

Image used under Creative Commons from skycaptaintwo