Getting Started and FAQ
You’ll first need a SMW profile to become a contributor
In order to become a contributor for SMW News, you’ll need to create your profile. Go to the top-right corner on our site, and you’ll see the SMW profile sign-up option. Once you create your account, send your username and email to firstname.lastname@example.org to receive publishing access.
Once you send us your profile name and email address, we can grant you access to the SMW News publishing platform
If you are a new contributor, click here to access the SMW News publishing (WordPress) platform. Once in, locate “Posts” on the left, and then click “Add New” to create your article. If you do not have that option, please email me your SMW profile username, as well as the email address you use for the account.
Finally, you must submit articles for review
When you complete an article in the SMW News publishing platform, please click “Submit for Review” instead of just saving it as a draft. This way, we’ll know which articles are complete and ready to edit, and which are still in development. Publishing schedules vary, ranging from a few days, to several weeks between submitting for review, and publishing.
Not all submitted posts are published
Just because you submit an article for review, that doesn’t mean SMW News will publish it. This is dependent on several factors, and because of our global contributor network, it is not possible for us to proactively update contributors on the status of articles. If you have questions, please email email@example.com
Add your bio and author profile picture to your SMW account
At the end of each article, the author’s name, bio, profile picture, and Twitter handle are automatically pulled in a featured box. If you would like this to be displayed on your articles, you must update your SMW profile’s bio, Twitter handle (only the name, and without the “@” as well. For example, “socialmediaweek” is correct, whereas “@socialmediaweek” and “http://www.twitter.com/socialmediaweek” is incorrect). You can also upload your profile picture from the front-end of the SMW website, which automatically appears on your published articles.
Editorial Style, Brand Voice, and Best Practices
Titles and Headlines
Article titles should be specific, attention-grabbing, and explain specifically what the content will dive into. We recommend visiting existing articles published on SMW News for inspiration. For example, “10 New Social Media Products and Platform Updates Marketers Need to Know About” is very different than “Best Social Media Products for Marketers”.
Excerpt blurb at the top of articles
You’ll notice articles now feature a short blurb area. This can help you set up your article, provide a 1-2 sentence synopsis, or add any context before the intro paragraph of your piece. You might prefer to leave this section blank, where our editors will fill them in, or you can populate them yourselves. To access this section when writing an article, click “Screen Options” in the top-right corner. This expands a drop-down menu where you can select the “Excerpt” checkbox to show on your screen. Then, scroll towards the very bottom of the page, and you’ll see a blank text box for excerpt copy.
Featured Images and Photos
Choosing an image for your article is optional. If you feel strongly about a particular image, graphic, or photo, please feel free to upload one that is 1200×630. You can upload a featured image using the box in the bottom-right of your article creation page. Just click “Set Featured Image” and upload or drag it from your desktop.
Be specific with your article, and not overly “high-level”
Similar to article titles, the more specific you are, the better. One way to think about this is the difference between publishing on SMW News vs. your personal blog. If you only publish in your personal blog once a month, it makes more sense to be general, focus on high-level topics, or offer vague best practices in the industry. Instead, SMW News articles can be quite specific and niche. For example, an article titled “Best Practices for Snapchat” would likely be very generic, as opposed to “11 Snapchat Content Tips to Reach Travel-Loving Millennials.”
Miscellaneous things to consider for formatting your articles
SMW News has a particular style and process for contributors submitting articles for review. Here are some of them that you should know:
- Links should open new tabs: Whenever you hyperlink something, please have the links open a new tab, rather than re-direct the reader’s current page. Learn how to do this simply using HTML by clicking here.
- Make sure you write or paste your content in the “HTML” tab: When you go to “Add New” post in the SMW News publishing platform, you have two options to write or paste your content: the “HTML” tab, and the “Visual” tab. You should write or paste your article in the “HTML” tab. This is because writing or pasting content while in the “Visual” tab often results in broken HTML, longer editing and publishing times, and poorly formatted content
- Articles on SMW News often use headers, whether they’re used in listicles, or just a way to break up content to make it easier for the reader to consume. We encourage headers, and if you do use them, please use the “h3” HTML tag, which is Header #3
Article topics we’re always looking for more of
The mission of SMW News is to help people everywhere live better, work smarter and be more productive using technology. This is core to our editorial strategy, along with some fun and entertaining pieces that make the reader laugh, smile, or think differently. Here are some article topics we’re looking for:
- Millennials and Generation-Z
- Technology nostalgia (life in the early tech and media days)
- Productivity and Time Hacks
- Internet pop-culture and original storytelling
- Emerging technology, new tools or mobile apps, etc.
Some of our top SMW News articles to use as inspiration
- Boost Your Instagram Stories Game for 2019 With These 10 Practices
- 10 New Social Media Products and Platform Updates Marketers Need to Know About
- People Are Dying To Know Why Instagram Stories Ranks Viewers In A Particular Order
- The Oregon Trail Generation: Life Before and After Mainstream Tech
- 6 Things Millennials Know About Brand Communications That You Don’t
- How Social Media Is Influencing Purchase Decisions
- Your 2019 Social Media To-Do List, Inspired by Buffer’s Annual Report/a>
- Meme Responsibly: Marketing Lessons from the Jerry Media Fiasco