"Building Blocks" Project

VISION: To provide a working "manual" to help entrepreneurial journalists launch new sites that reflect evolving business models for quality web journalism.

GOAL: Provide an ongoing, how-to series of "building block" guidelines, checklists and tutorials for launch.

USERS: Two-tier audience:
- Online Novices: For this group, we would provide basic, practical guidance for how to launch an online news venue with an eye toward building a business. We would cover the basics of web publishing and blogs, domain registration, community building & management, social media, advertising, market research, mobile, promotion, etc.
- Intermediate & Advanced Users: For this group, we would provide more sophisticated guidance for higher-level site launch and development and business strategy.

IDEAS (infrastructure & education):

  • Anatomy of a launch, basic checklist, with links to how-to info (marketing assessment, advertising assessment, domain name, domain name management, CMS levels, mapping the community, beatblogging, multimedia skills, computer equipment, software, videocamera, time before launch, beta, launch, time management, community management -- commenting, verifying, etc.)
  • Facebook - when does it make sense to use and how? examples
  • Ning -- how to use and manage a social network. examples
  • All Things Twitter: promote a story/beat; hashtags. examples
  • Beatblogging tools: CoverItLive, Seesmic, Ustream, etc. examples
  • Geo-Up: geotagging, metadata, getting into geofeeds/search engines, examples
  • RSS -- using feeds effectively across Ning & Wordpress (or other blog software)
  • Mobile
  • Email
  • Printcasting - geographic/topic micropublishing
  • Revenue streams: advertising, donation, foundation funding
  • Entrepreneurship: business plan, strategies, management, taxes, hiring and firing, health benefits, retirement plans
  • List of RJICollaboratory members who can help?