OK, it took ages, but Rome wasn’t built in a day either.
In July of last year, I was working in acquisitions, managing the (now gone) Northeast Region. I ran book drives in Ontario, Connecticut and New York. But I knew there was more that I could do; more that I could offer to Better World Books. That’s why in July 2007 I took over control of the blog (notice June 2007 had two posts, July 2007 had 17 and October had 26. I’ve never looked back). At first there were small changes, instituting formatting (Arial 2, black, please!), insisting on more photos, requiring a standardized signature at the top, and trying to tap into content that people would want to read. The fact is, that people who like us do so for two reasons:
(1) Our involvement with our non-profit literacy programs
(2) The fact that we are the coolest online bookseller in existence.
The blog was answering well to (1), but coming up way short on expressing (2), something we all felt was true, but no one would know by looking here at the blog. After hacking away at this job, two things occurred that spurred on a huge change, first of all acquisitions was on the cusp of being completely restructured, and second I was drawing more traffic with better content to the blog.
Xavier called me come wintertime, and after tracking him down after a few months of searching (he’s like a special agent, it’s unreal trying to get a hold of him) he offered me the job of coming out to San Francisco and becoming the CBO, [Chief Blogging Officer]. The first order of duty was to get involved in social media, which I did via a few routes:
-a Facebook fan page
-a YouTube page
-a Flickr photostream
-a Twitter account
and a few less notable efforts.
But the real goal, as it was when I first took over, was to create a blog that was compelling for our customers, stakeholders and the average lover of books. This was going to require a huge restructure of the blog. We started in March 2008 and after I drew up a plan for the new site, we started working with a creative agency to iron out details and enact the plan in June or July.
Now, after tons of phone calls and emails and hair pulling, the new blog is live. It’s not done, as those who stop innovating doom themselves to electronic death, but I’m proud to say, it’s ready to offer you some great new material, such as author podcasts, video interviews and other great features, and we’re ready to listen to what you have to say!
Chief Blogging Officer and Evangelist
Better World Books