Getting Started - First Steps
Building a strong foundation of early posts and engaged members is one of the most important things you will do as a founder. Here's how to do it right.
Building a Foundation of 10 Excellent Posts
After building your Switchboard, your goal is to pre-populate it with awesome posts. Once you've built a strong foundation, you can begin introducing larger groups of your community to your Switchboard.
Your Switchboard's first 20 posts should:
Set the right tone: Generous, positive, and collaborative
Demonstrate diversity and balance: Show the topics you expect people to post about most often and ensure there is a balance between asks and offers. This will create multiple entry points for engagement for users.
Make a compelling argument: "There are people here, and they want to help!"
Demonstrate activity: Future users will model their activity and behavior off of what already exists, and interacting with posts in a variety of ways enables future users to get a clear sense of how they can participate on the Switchboard.
Ask or offer, early posts should be:
Generous. Evergreen. Detailed. Warm. Collaborative. Bold. Useful. Heard.
Invite Founding Members to Post
Begin by inviting some founding members to create the first posts. Share your Switchboard with collaborators, close friends, coworkers or anyone else who will be excited to help you get things started and ask them to create a post.
Some tips for inviting founding members:
Explain how Switchboard works and your vision for the community.
Frame it as a request for help: "I'm excited to be starting a Switchboard for our community. It's going to be awesome, but to get things started I need your help...."
Give them 3 or more concrete suggestions for what they should post about. The more personal the better.
Make sure you let them know you appreciate it by commenting on their posts, even if just to say thank you.
Awesome! What's next?