Dave Hebert

Truckloads of great advice thus far; allow me to offer a few more that I hope are useful:

  • The substance of a blog post can be an embedded video message from a sincere leader, a compelling graphic about budget, or live coverage of an important meeting. Think about ways to do more than the first-person written account.
  • A senior leader can’t be expected to know the answer to every question raised in the comments section — create a list of subject matter experts throughout your agency to whom you can quickly turn to help provide answers (and then document answers to popular questions in a place you can link to from the blog).
  • You’ll get a lot of questions about how many people are reading posts and the like. Find and use an analytics tool that will get you the info you need, ideally in realtime, about user activity.
  • There is no one response to all 75 of the agitated commenters on the post about sequestration that will make them all understand and be happy. Help your leaders avoid going down that rabbit hole.
  • Anonymity can help introverts get involved in the conversation, and it can facilitate unconstructive drive-by commenting. Choose your identification policies wisely.
  • There is often a really interesting inside story behind the things your agency tells the rest of the world in a press release or congressional testimony. Find those stories and tell them on the blog rather than rehashing what you shared publicly.

Hope it goes well — keep us posted, Janna.