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Fresh Content Contribution Idea

Forums: General Discussion [Sticky]
Created on: 10/30/14 04:09 PM Views: 5426 Replies: 21
Thursday, October 30, 2014 at 4:09 PM

Hello Admins! Happy Halloween. I have an idea that I would like to get your opinion about today. One of the things I hear from admins is their about their struggle to keep content fresh on their website. As you know, keeping your content updated, fresh and new is one of the best ways to promote traffic from your classmates and keep them engaged with your website.

We currently have an option that admins can turn on under the Announcements section that would allow for members to submit an announcement to be approved and posted by the admin. But what if we built a way for members to contribute content that could be turned on as a designated page?

The idea would be to keep the interface as simple as possible. The contributing member would not need to be designated as an admin. You, as the admin (Root) would decide if you would like for your members to be able to contribute content pages for the site and would turn this feature on via the Preferences page. Upon doing so, a link would appear under the Member Functions, let's call it "Contribute Content" (but of course that could easily change and we might be able to let you name the link as well).

On the Contribute Content page, your member would fill out a field with a suggested page name that you would be able to tweak if necessary prior to approving the page. They would also have a simple text area to compose their page content as well as add an image or a video to the page. We would not likely use the Editor Window that you have included on your Edit Site Pages, but rather a simplified (yet to be identified) content form with very basic editing functionality.

Once submitted, you as the admin would be notified to review and approve the new page. Additionally, you would also organize where the link will appear via the Edit Site Pages section. The page itself could be designed to provide credit to the contributor by placing their profile image and a link to their profile in the upper right corner of the page.

One might ask how this differs from the What's New page? While I know that the What's New page promotes a lot of classmate interaction, I see the Contribute Content feature to be very different in nature. You might open up the ability for member to discuss topics of their choosing, or you might ask that they contribute very specific topics. One idea might be that you allow for members to build pages that promote their own businesses to which you could then organize under a business sub page section. You might have a writer in your class that keeps up with the high school and might then be in charge of contributing School News. Really, the ideas could lead in a number of directions.

The question is, would you like such a feature to be built? As an admin, would you turn this on for your members to be able to contribute? And finally, do you think you would get members who would contribute meaningful content to the site? Remember, in the end, the goal here is to help you as the admin generate more content, fresh content and meaningful content that will drive your member back to the site and keep them engaged.

We want to hear your thoughts and we look forward to hearing your suggestions about this idea.

Class Creator Staff

Thursday, October 30, 2014 at 4:27 PM - Response #1

This is a great idea. Many still do not join Class Connection because they don't have a FB account and not interested to link with and so never get to see What's New.

Ideas from members are out there but it's not brought up for whatever reason ,even like a feedback; something I picked up from listening to attendees at the reunion.

I hope we will push through with this new feature. It a brilliant new idea, sounds promising.

Thanks Scott.

Edited 10/30/14 4:30 PM
Thursday, October 30, 2014 at 4:44 PM - Response #2

I might have to see it but I think I'd turn it off. I'm not really comfortable with others adding content (even though I could not approve it).

It may also cause some hard feelings, etc. if some people had their content approved and others did not. You might get a "well, then, don't ask me or my opinion on anything again" type attitude.

Thursday, October 30, 2014 at 4:49 PM - Response #3

Scott, I don't use the "What's New" page because I already have a "Class News" page that I update as often as there is news. Also your idea may not be as useful to my class due to our ages and lack of computer usage by most. However, I believe your idea is a really good one and certainly may help in keeping other class websites fresh and entertaining. A class that is more savvy with technology than mine may get much benefit from this. Applause, applause, applause, for your great idea.

Thursday, October 30, 2014 at 5:26 PM - Response #4

This may work for some sites, however it will need the OPTION to turn on/turn off member comments. I asked a member of the alumni site to write a column. That may be perfect for her. However, where will members be able to comment if the topic warrants comments?

Thursday, October 30, 2014 at 5:45 PM - Response #5

Commenting could certainly be integrated if we decide to do so. I'd imagine that it could be set up as a field at the bottom of the page just as most blog pages are designed. Interactions could be placed at the bottom as well as on the What's New page. ... just brain-storming here. Smile

Thursday, October 30, 2014 at 7:22 PM - Response #6

At first blush, I tend to agree with Scott. The idea is definitely full of potential. However, like Scott, our "over-the-hill" gang, is not really into that sort of thing. But for the younger crowd, might be pretty nifty. Ken

Thursday, October 30, 2014 at 7:35 PM - Response #7


I am very much up for this feature. This is ideal for me.

I have been trying to encourage classmates to submit content since the beginning, so that they can feel a sense of ownership of the site. I know at some point I am going to run out of ideas for content.

After all, for us, we are older now and may have something really interesting to contribute.

Can the admin access you give them only allow them to do "their" page within the site?

I can see page competitions between classmates, I can see survey's for the best pages all sorts of things!!!

This is the best news I have heard all day. Now that our reunion is over and nothing is happening until next years mixer the question of how to stimulate the site and keep folks coming back and enjoying it is the question. I think you have just found the answer!


Also, can we give them space to create more than one page. What I would want more than anything is flexibility. Maybe I/they could add fly-outs under their tab... Would they have the option to lock down their pages or keep them public?

We could have an option to say for a donation increase their ability to add content say after the first page. That way they can more directly help support the site.

Thank You so much! I am really glad I chose your company to do business with for my class site! You guys are awesome!!

Can you also add a place for classmates to add their middle school and elementary school information. We would like to be able to say email those in the class who went to a certain middle or elementary school.

I have some folks who would not come to the overall reunion; but, would come to say a reunion of the elementary school. Yeah, go figure; but, I am good with that; we could do mini reunions based on demographics.... etc..

Edited 10/30/14 7:47 PM
Thursday, October 30, 2014 at 9:13 PM - Response #8

At first read, don't think I'll be using this feature. I think in the 5 or 6 yrs I've had the website, one classmate submitted a video of him and his wife. Participation will be very limited.

Thursday, October 30, 2014 at 9:16 PM - Response #9

Right on, Lynda. Might be good for some, but not all. Ken

Thursday, October 30, 2014 at 9:28 PM - Response #10

I think this is a great idea. We do not use What's New as it seemed to be a jumble of old and new, and some comments were meant to be between classmates. Personally, I felt like I was snooping into areas where I was not expected. Very few used it, so I guess others felt that way also.

I would promote this new idea as more of a soap box or forum but with the understanding that questionable and/or inappropriate entries could be removed. Hopefully, this would stimulate at least a few to share something.

Thanks Scott.

Friday, October 31, 2014 at 1:09 AM - Response #11

I think this would be useful for those who have a very active site. Ours is not, so I don't see us using it.

Friday, October 31, 2014 at 7:01 AM - Response #12

Hi Scott,

I can see how this might be useful. I'm not sure that my classmates would use this, but it would be a good feature to try out. I see the possibility of creating some friction if I disagree/edit something submitted by some individuals, so I would probably try to limit this to selected topics. Thanks for checking with us!


Friday, October 31, 2014 at 9:51 AM - Response #13

I would be willing to try this with my class. Not sure how many would participate, but we never know until we try.

Friday, October 31, 2014 at 11:09 AM - Response #15

I would much prefer that the time invested in this proposal be spent working some of the issues that admins have reported over the past few years, particularly the issues related to file management in the storage vaults. My two cents...

Friday, October 31, 2014 at 11:25 AM - Response #16

Since I don't think my class would find this to be something they'd jump into, and I'm not fond of needing to turn down someone's idea of a great new page, I agree with Dick Bell. There's a lot of popular suggestions on the mythical Wish List that I'd like to see the available labor hours used for.

Friday, October 31, 2014 at 11:50 AM - Response #17

So to address some of the questions above...

Yes - I too like the idea of content competitions. That is a great way to spur involvement.

Facebook - I agree. I heard from numerous admins that the feel that Facebook has detracted from their site involvement. To that I would contend that we have added the Facebook app so that members can still stay involved with the class site while they participate in their Facebook time. We have had a lot of success with the app for those who do use Facebook. On the other hand, there are many members who are not avid Facebook users who very much enjoy the environment that the class website provides.

Can't we do this now with limited Admin access- Yes, sort of. You could potentially add those who want to contribute content as Co-Admins and only give them access to the Edit Site Pages area, but they would also have full access to the rest of your content, which is not really desirable. On the other hand this also add the complexity of what to do when the contributor wants to edit a page they submitted. That would be an extra page that I was not considering that I will need to account for if we move forward.

"Not sure how many of my classmates will contribute." To this I would say, who knows until you try. If we turn it on and never tell them about it, I would say little to none. However, if you turn it on and have a purpose for the new feature and ask for your members to contribute, I would bet that many would participate. I think it just kind of depends on how you pose the opportunity to the members.

I know this idea might not be for everyone. But the concept is that it might help those who struggle to keep their sites relevant. We are all wanting our classmates to spend more time on the class sites and stay involved. This is just one idea the might help to spur more involvement. Involvement in terms of... 1. Giving others a chance to express themselves and contribute meaningful content. 2. Providing an additional notification to members to bring them back to the site. 3. Assisting admins who might otherwise not update the content on their site very often simply because they have run out of new ideas. 4. The ideas of content contests, member business pages, and even a "Newsletter" staff.

All of these ideas are ways that your members might feel more connected with the site and lead to more site traffic - as well as more participation in future events.

Again, this is all just a brainstorm at the moment. Programmers are still hard at work on other projects, as well as taking care of issues. Thanks for the productive discussion!

Friday, October 31, 2014 at 7:12 PM - Response #19

Thanks again for being willing to grow the opportunities for classmate participation. This is the way to engage folks to be most active and feel a sense of ownership and "buy in" to the site. This is a VALUE ADDED feature that is a great way to give a classmate to add the kind of content that is more than just a comment! I love it! Let's move on this, one!

Again, limiting a classmate to admin only his or her page would be most advantageous. I would not want them to have the ability to change anything else on the site.

Like you said if it is kept fairly simple and easy to do then maybe folks will get more involved with putting content out there.

Thanks again!!

Saturday, December 27, 2014 at 11:43 AM - Response #20

Hi Emma,

The below quote is part of your first comment in this thread. I am addressing the middle and elementary school information you requested. You have the ability to add this to your members' profile! Use the Profile Generator to add and move questions. Once completed and active, place a notice on your home page about the additional questions and ask members to update their profiles go to Edit Profile under their Member Functions. The same info in an email to the class would be helpful. I think this is a great idea and will add it to my sites as well as suggest it to other sites from my school. Thanks!

As to reunions for the primary, middle schools and mini-reunions, watch for the soon-to-be-released Event Planner to plan the events!

Emma Christensen wrote:

Can you also add a place for classmates to add their middle school and elementary school information. We would like to be able to say email those in the class who went to a certain middle or elementary school.

I have some folks who would not come to the overall reunion; but, would come to say a reunion of the elementary school. Yeah, go figure; but, I am good with that; we could do mini reunions based on demographics.... etc..

Saturday, December 27, 2014 at 3:56 PM - Response #21

An event planner geared toward mini reunions sounds interesting but how would the event planner operate for them. Would there be differences from the planner for regular reunions?

Also. Regarding Facebook. If Class Creator and Facebook would allow admins to obtain at least contact information from registering classmates, it would be helpful and appreciated. I understand that there is apparently no way we can get contact and other information from our classmates who become member of our site using the integration application the way we can if they join directly through our website when they type the information into the online form. That information is something we depend on. Hope in the future the Facebook side of the classmate sign up process will be changed to enable admins to receive this data. True. It's all one set of data. But it is very interesting that we can only acquire the contact data if a classmate registers directly through our site and not via Facebook and that Class Creator chooses to be publicly mute in print on this aspect of the integration application.

Edited 05/10/15 9:40 PM
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