Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Google Voice: 'Great engagement tool'

I'm loving that Google Voice is catching on as an engagement tool. Here's the latest on these projects:

Delaware County Daily Times produces 'Delco Speaks'
After the Philadelphia Eagles recent loss to the Cardinals, the staff at Delaware County Daily Times used Google Voice to ask its audience, "What should the Eagles do now?"
The responses poured in — 60 calls in the first 10 minutes after posting the question.
Here's the finished product:

Feedback on putting together these projects
I asked Vince Carey, online editor for Delco, what he thought about using Google Voice.
"I found the process pretty easy, but pretty time consuming," Carey wrote to me in an email. "We got over 60 calls and going through each message before deciding which ones to download wasn't a lot of fun."
He added: "To be truthful, I think it's a fun idea, but can't be done daily."
I agree, this isn't a daily project. I really think the best uses of this tool will be for those big breaking news stories or issues that people are deeply opinionated about.
Getting so many calls will make it more time consuming to go through the messages, but I think it's also a sign that we've done the right thing by engaging the community on a topic that they want to be heard on.
I'm going to post later with some tips on editing audio that should help reduce that message review/selection time too.
And while the process can be time consuming, I found that practice helps. As with everything, the more you do it, the more experience you get and the more efficient you become — the whole practice makes perfect theory.
Steve Buttry, director of community engagement and social media for JRC, recently chimed in on Google Voice too, calling it a "great engagement tool" and asking staff to let him know how it's working out.
Thanks Steve!

Coming up — tips on editing audio
Just like learning how to structure a story, there's some things to keep in mind while editing audio.
Check back tomorrow for some general tips on that.

Looking for resources on Google Voice? 
Lots of information and how-to documents available on the post, Using Google Voice for multimedia projects

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