Tips on Creating your first Seenit Story

Setting up your first story in Seenit is a pretty simple process, but there are a few key steps that will help get you off to a good start.

Be clear about your 'why'

It may sound obvious, but if you're going to get people to contribute to your story, you'll need to clearly communicate the reasons behind it. Doing so will help others see the value in taking part. Knowing your 'why' will help inform who you reach out to, any instructions you give, and what you do with the content you collect, so it's worth a bit of thought.

Involve the right people

Asking the right people to contribute to your story can mean more contributors and better contributions. Who is best placed to tell the story? Who is closest to the topic or cares the most? If you can identify these people then you're onto a winner.

Connect with your contributors

You want to ensure your contributors feel well-informed, comfortable, and valued to get the best out of them. It can help to get them together for a briefing call or meeting, if possible - this way you can get people to join your story and field any questions or concerns. Talking to them throughout the story is generally handy, whether it's a deadline reminder, advice on filming, or a simple thank-you.

Film an intro message

Your introduction message will appear on the story uploader page to anyone who clicks your share link. We've found that stories with intro messages get roughly 50% more contributions, so we recommend having one. It doesn't have to be long; you might want to do a simple welcome to add a human touch, or you might want to give some filming advice.

Let the people tell the story

There are no strict rules for how a story should be. You could tell a story in countless different ways. If you have a clear picture of what you want, then there's nothing wrong with saying that. But you don't always have to go in with an idea of what the story should be. In fact, sometimes you simply won't know, and finding it out is the beauty of this type of storytelling. As documentary filmmaker Julia Reichert says, "When we go to film something, we don't go in with: This is the story, let's go get it ... (We say) let's go in there and find people to talk with."

Film some example shots

Studies show that video is the most engaging content format, so what better way to guide people than through the same medium? Filming some example shots can be great way of communicating what you're looking for. Seeing someone else do it first usually makes people feel more comfortable doing it themselves - nobody wants to be first on the dance floor!

Regularly check your story

This may sound like an obvious one, but it's worth taking note of. It's important to check your story regularly while it's in progress - at least once a day - so that you can figure out what action you need to take, if any. Maybe things are going quite swimmingly, so all that's required is a satisfied grin and some back-patting. If so, great! Either way, you'll want to keep an eye on the number of contributors, number of uploads, quality of uploads, etc., and act accordingly.

Set a deadline

Even people with the best of intentions will likely put something to the bottom of their priority list if there's no set deadline. You may want to set a soft deadline, which means one that you don't mind extending for extra submissions. Also, keep the deadline relatively short; a deadline of two weeks, for example, means people may think 'I'll do it later' then forget about it. Don't forget to give reminders, too.

Close the loop

Whatever you create from the uploads you receive, share it back to your contributors. Thank them and close the loop so they can see what they've been a part of, even if they didn't make the final cut! Doing this isn't simply a nice thing to do, it also means they can share and amplify your creations. To add to this, if they see the value in their participation they may be more willing to get involved again.