Tech Tips Blog

In our innovation coaches meeting on Friday I discussed with a couple other coaches how the tech tips blog is probably least likely to be accessed by individuals who could really use tech support. Even for staff who are pretty strong users of technology, our work lives are so busy it is hard to build in a routine of checking that blog to see if there is anything new or useful there. I’m wondering if it wouldn’t be worthwhile to send out a monthly email newsletter from 287 Tech Tips just highlighting recent posts? This would help staff see that there are useful things there!

I don’t think the readership of All Staff emails and newsletters is very high. We could check with Rachel, but last I heard, most staff don’t even open them.

Over the past year there has been movement to reduce the volume of all-staff emails, in an attempt to increase reading rates for email that does go to all staff. I believe the stats on All Staff emails aren’t particularly encouraging, and click-through rates to articles is less encouraging. If we were to do an email, it would most likely have to be an “opt-in” format.

That said, I think emails with catchy titles that link to particularly helpful and timely articles could have decent access rates.

I think it’s worth having a broad discussion as well on how to increase Tech Tips reading.

Initially Rachel thought the readership wasn’t that high, but that was due to a technical misunderstanding. I asked Rachel to work with IT staff to dig into the reporting of our staff communications. It was determined that the readership is significantly higher than what we initially thought.

That’s great news. Can you share what kinds of numbers/percentages we’re getting? I think this has held back a few discussions about the best ways to get the word out to staff on Strategy 2 items as well as Curriculum. I know we don’t want to overload people but it’s nice to have an outlet where people will see. Hopefully this same discussion applies to the Equity Blog as well.

Overall, our average readership of all staff messages are around 70%, which is very good. Perhaps I shouldn’t use the term readership, since all we know is that they viewed it, but may have only scanned it very quickly, etc.

Wow, even if some just open it and scan, that’s much better than I would have guessed. I’m glad to hear it! If we keep our posts short and to the point and relevant to the work staff are doing we should have some confidence that the message is getting out then.

I wonder if we can also include links to quizzes on the articles at the end for staff to take and then be entered for prizes if they get perfect scores. Maybe a little more motivation to get the word out and help people retain the information. Quizzing interrupts forgetting!

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Ah, a sort of Tech Tips prize thing? We could embed a Google form for that, right? That’d probably be easiest?

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Just noticing something about Discourse here. It seems like if you start a thread you get an e-mail when there is a reply. I imagine there are email notifications settings… I tried replying to the thread through gmail but that didn’t work.

Hi Ben,
From what I see, it looks like you won’t be able to respond via email. Looks like all the buttons drive the user back to the discourse site.

Yeah, the button I get allows me to open the topic in my browser but not reply via email.

I’m finding the Discourse app really helpful on my phone though. I get number alerts on the app icon, so it’s easy to see when something new has come up.

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I like the idea of an ‘opt-in’ email. That way when staff come with questions or concerns I could point them to that option if they want to learn more and encourage them to be proactive.