Designing Your Forms To Generate Stories
Do Some Good has developed a platform feature that is an absolute marketing game changer! In any form you create, you can mark almost any field to be 'Suitable For Stories' in the form builder properties. Any submission to that form can be shared as a Do Some Good story in seconds!
You can do this as a stand alone form designed specifically to generate shareable content (like an Employee Volunteer Spotlight) or could be embedded inside and existing form as an optional extra. An example might be adding a question like 'In addition to your request from us, what else can the community do to help your cause?' as part of a donation request form. Whether you approve their funding request or not, you can use your media reach to help support them by getting the word out to more people.
Things To Consider While Designing Your Form
- Try out our template forms. When you create a new form, you have the option to start with a blank form, or, try one of our templates. Organizations are provided with several helpful templates specifically designed to generate stories for you to share. In all cases, the filling out of the form can be completed by others and you just have to decide when and where to publish and share it:
- Impact Follow Up
- Employee Spotlight
- Business/Organization Spotlight (for partners)
- Store Spotlight (franchise/branch recognition)
- Consider the order of your "Suitable for stories" fields. The story will be constructed in the order you ask the questions. Each question will be a new section in the resulting story, in the same order they appear in the form.
- Customize the label for your story field. When you select 'Suitable for stories' in the properties, you have the option to change the label that will appear in any published story. In your form you are asking a question of a submitter, in the story you want to introduce the content to a reader. Customizing the label will allow you to do both. An example of a question might be: "What impact has your organization made in the last year?", the label for the story might read "Our Community Impact!". Putting thought into how your story will look will save you time in every story you publish.
Publishing and Sharing Your Auto-Generated Stories
As soon as you get your first submission with a suitable for story field, you will be able to start publishing. In your Submissions list, the 'Current State' column allows you to create a story and also has an indicator if a story has been published from that submission before:
- Red: Story available but not published
- Green: Story available and has been published in the past
All you need to do as an administrator is click the 'Create a Story' link in the 'Current State' column next to the submission. You can also create a story from the menu of that submission or its Submission Details page.
Once you click the link or menu item you'll be taken to the Create Story From Submission page where you have the option to review/customize the story before posting.
You can optionally add a title to your story. By default, this will be your form name but you can change it or remove it if you like. When the story is posted in the newsfeed, the title will be displayed over the preview image(s). When viewing the story on its own page, the title will appear at the top of the story.
The Customize Story page is an editor that is pre filled with all of the suitable for story fields from the submission and you have an opportunity to review or edit the content. After your story is published you will have access to these same editing features for your story. As you make changes in the editor, you will see exactly what the story will look like when it is published.
The ability to edit or format content is ideal for fixing typos and grammar, adding @mentions, moving images. Best of all you can add an introduction about your business, social mission or partnership with the submitting person or organization.
The 'Insert Image' button in the formatting bar will allow you to add photos that were uploaded as part of the submission and also add new photos to the story (maximum of 8 per story). Any uploaded image can be inserted at any spot in the story but can only appear once.
When you are happy with your story, click "Post Story" and the story will instantly appear on your Do Some Good newsfeed and on your website if you have widgets configured! You'll then be prompted to share your story on social media. Simply click the button and you can easily share the story to all of your social media channels and copy and post/send the story link. If you would like to have stories you and your ambassadors share also automatically feed to your website, learn more here!
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