ELGL Digital: Coming Soon… A brand new homepage?

ELGL Digital: Coming Soon… A brand new homepage?

Alright, alright, alright. I’m sorry, I owe you guys an update on the progress of ELGL’s Digital Work Group – also known as the weekly Google Hangout where Kent sounds like he’s running a marathon in a wind tunnel, Kirsten is the only one with a webcam and Rebecca crushes her lunch. I should have updated you last week and look how disappointed Kirsten was in me for not doing a post:

In classic dad form she wasn’t mad, just disappointed. Now that I feel like ELGL’s Large Adult Son let me tell you what we’ve been up to.

To Password Protect or Not to Password Protect

In what can only be described as the fiercest debate in ELGL history we debated what website content should be restricted to ELGL members and what should be open to the public. (Sidebar: A close second on fiercest debate was that time Kent just changed the “E” in ELGL from Emerging to Engaging overnight – lesson learned, Kirsten can never go on vacation without him again.)

To broadly summarize and do little justice to the nuances of people’s opinions here were the two sides of the debate:

  • “Lock it down!” – Without a paywall, ELGL will lose our less dedicated members because they can get our content without joining.
  • “Free the content dude.” – By not having a paywall ELGL will get more eyes on our content and more exposure means more eventual members.

Like good local government administrators we came up with a compromise where some of our content will be restricted to ELGL members, but most will be free.

So what will be restricted to ELGL members?

  • Job Postings (Duh.)
  • Job Resources, like the Resume Book™️
  • Access to the ELGL network. This one is a little broad but by this we mean finding out what ELGL members are in your region, a vendor registry (like Yelp for local government) or the ability to share events with ELGL members.
  • Writers choice. So if you write something awesome for ELGL but don’t want it to be open to the public for whatever reason.

What do you thing of this? As always Tweet us if you have questions or ideas for the Digital Work Group.

Coming to a Computer Screen Near You

This week (like literally 4 hours ago) we talked about what we want the website to look like and what we really need. How does this affect you, a regular visitor to the ELGL website? You will hopefully notice a better homepage and have the ability to navigate to what you need more easily.

For me, what I hope we can find a way to do is organize our content so that the ELGL website can be better used as a resource. Let’s say you need to find out about social media policies or practices for your city, we won’t shame you here at ELGL because not all local government employers are as hip as ELGL and that’s okay. Well we have resources that you need on our website! But it’s not always easy to find. I find that I often use the search bar and hope that the random thing that I’m looking for comes up. Obviously this is not ideal if we want our content to help people and enable local governments to improve.

There’s still a lot more work to do on this front but I’m excited to see what will come of it. And don’t worry, I made my hatred and opposition to “Mega Menus” very *very* clear. If you have to hover over something to find what you’re looking for that website should just go straight to the garbage.

I hope this update compensates for my lateness and that you, dear reader, aren’t as disappointed in ELGL’s resident Large Adult Son as Kirsten Wyatt. As always, please let us know what you think! Comment, email or Tweet us if you have questions or ideas for the Digital Work Group.

  • 1) IMHO, I fall on the “take down that wall” side of the paywall content debate for several reasons. Most importantly, you’ve got amazing engagement (big strength!) within your network and can’t see benefit from adding roadblocks which could potentially block someone from entering that network. Also, if you’re concerned about monetization, I think your business opportunities grow exponentially with the size of the community you build. Lastly, you can still have paid membership with premium benefits (discount to events, supper clubs, schwag, and many more) that provide value beyond non-members, without having to lock out your content.

    2) I feel so uncool…I was still telling people about ‘Emerging Local Government Leaders’ 😳