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So we have a blog on Wordpress where we can see our followers.  What are the rules for sending notes directly to our followers asking what they find useful about our blog and what they'd find more useful for future posts?

This is a hypothetical questions, however, since we have done nothing of this sort.

Thank you!

Tags: Follower, blogs, communications, federal, feedback, for, rules

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Don't have an easy answer for ya but check out howto.gov's info on Paperwork Reduction Act - http://www.howto.gov/web-content/requirements-and-best-practices/la...

Specifically

Social Media, Web-Based Interactive Technologies, and the Paperwork...(PDF, 83 KB, 7 pages, April 2010)

Thank for sending this along.  I am aware of this as a policy but haven't reviewed the details so the link is helpful.  Because Wordpress is not, even thought the content is from a federal agency, I didn't know if there were different rules with engaging with followers.

Thanks!

Kudos on the blog. I suggest vetting your questions, etc. with the Office of Legal Counsel and/or the appropriate attorney at your workplace, if you have not already done so.

DBG

Thanks!  Still researching at this point.  We've been consulting GC guidance since the creation of our blog so wanting to only leverage activities that will remain so moving forward.  The blogosphere presents so many opportunities to connect your connect, the challenge that remains is selecting the right one. 

Hi Becky - Take a look at other federal blogs and pick one that's similar...

http://www.usa.gov/Topics/Reference-Shelf/News/blog.shtml

I'd urge you to reach out direct and see what they've done. Let me know if you find one and could use an introduction. Steve Ressler or I might know them.

Great idea, Andrew.  

Sometimes it takes a peer to identify the obvious.  Thanks!

Is there a reason you're looking to send messages to followers? I'm assuming the responses below that involve legal counsel refer to contact with specific individuals. Would you still need legal counsel if you just surveyed your entire audience without tracking who they were?

An idea would be to get perspectives from everyone who reads your blog by using a survey tool (you can use free survey tools such as SurveyMonkey or possibly SurveyGizmo) and posting a blog entry asking for responses. You could create the survey so that it starts off with some self-identification -- "do you subscribe to this blog to receive updates when new entries are posted?" If yes, then they get certain questions, including questions on content that they found most useful and that they want to see more of in the future. If no, then you can ask why not, and ask them the same kinds of content-focused questions. (I should note that this kind of survey may require you to pay for the tool -- usually free survey tools don't allow you to do something this robust, but I could be wrong.)

As an alternative, with WordPress, you could always use a Poll plug-in, and after every post, you could insert a "was this blog post informative/useful?" poll and gather data that way too. That would take longer, but would also be fairly specific with regard to useful content.

We are not allowed to use surveys without an incredible amount of oversight.  I'm just looking to make our blog better and reach a larger audience.  Considering adding a question at the end of each post to encourage online dialogue which we've had very little of in the first year.

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