Blogging & coverage

Blog posts by and mentions of the Helpful team across the internet, on our own blogs and elsewhere.

Facebook pages can now join groups thumbnail image

Facebook pages can now join groups

Administrators of Facebook groups now have an option to allow pages – not just people – to join their group.  This is important. Engaging with communities on Facebook has always been a challenge for companies, because one or more members of staff would have to join a group using their personal profile. That’s tricky because […]

Accessibility for WordPress publishers thumbnail image

Accessibility for WordPress publishers

Accessibility (or ‘a11y’) doesn’t just refer to people with disabilities but is about ensuring everyone is able to use every site on the web. We work to meet Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0 in all our sites as standard, however we recently had the pleasure of working with one of our clients who is willing to […]

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Easy WordPress local development environment

We believe it letting the build team work in the environment that works best for them – but a local dev environment should also be painless and quick to setup. So recently we’ve rolled out an optional setup using Laravel Valet+ to keep simple tasks simple. TL;DR; As simple as Homebrew, Composer, and Valet+ are, using […]

Podcasts: Where do I start? thumbnail image

Podcasts: Where do I start?

  The number of podcast listeners has increased significantly over the past four years, reaching over 68 million in America in 2017. 44 percent of these listeners are millennials and 57 percent of those listeners hold a bachelor’s degree or higher. What used to be considered an outdated and “nerdy” platform has revolutionised media, news, […]

Helpful’s first firebreak: what we learned thumbnail image

Helpful’s first firebreak: what we learned

During June 2018, we had our first Gov.uk inspired ‘firebreak’, where we paused non-essential project work for 2-3 weeks so the build team could focus on their own individual projects; including researching new ideas & technologies, organising neglected repositories, remodelling dated templates and writing helpful guides and documentation. Urgent requests from clients were prioritised over […]

Nine things we learned at #CommsCamp thumbnail image

Nine things we learned at #CommsCamp

We like Commscamp. A couple of hundred interesting public sector comms people in a lovely rambling building by the Birmingham & Fazeley canal, run on traditional unconference principles: no fixed agenda before the day, anyone can pitch a 50 min session, and the “law of two feet” applies (i.e. if a session is boring you, […]

Happy Birthday to the NHS! thumbnail image

Happy Birthday to the NHS!

As a team here at Helpful, we've got our share of personal connections to the NHS at painful and joyful moments in own lives. So as the NHS turns 70 this week, we've been looking back at some of the NHS projects we've done in our eight years working with NHS and related organisations.

Learnings from the Women Of Silicon Roundabout conference 2018 thumbnail image

Learnings from the Women Of Silicon Roundabout conference 2018

On Tuesday I joined 4000 others at the Women Of Silicon Roundabout conference in London, celebrating gender diversity in tech and the day as a whole was extremely interesting and inspiring. The best bits The standout for me was Sarah Raymond, product lead at Spotify. Spotify has 170m listeners across 65 countries so pinning down and understanding […]

Three things to make your Twitter profile pop thumbnail image

Three things to make your Twitter profile pop

You don’t have to search far to find online guides offering advice for creating the perfect Twitter profile. Many of the guides I’ve found online are focused on gaining more followers, but really that should come organically if you’ve mastered the basics of your profile. The ‘popping’ part of your profile should be personality. Here’s […]

Using “prudent overreaction” to manage an incident of our own thumbnail image

Using “prudent overreaction” to manage an incident of our own

Steph writes about what we learned by “prudently overreacting” to an incident which helped us put some of our own crisis templates and information security measures into practice Using “prudent overreaction” to manage an incident of our own

Social Simulator: now in New York City thumbnail image

Social Simulator: now in New York City

We’ve been doing business in the USA for several years, helping clients in sectors from pharmaceuticals to financial services, energy to agritech to stress-test their crisis and emergency preparedness through crisis drills incorporating a realistic and dynamic social media element. This month we enter an incredibly exciting new phase, as we’ve opened our first North […]

Leadership in a crisis: how to fight distraction amid the blur of social media thumbnail image

Leadership in a crisis: how to fight distraction amid the blur of social media

Steph writes about how we test leaders’ ability to avoid simply being glued to the soap opera of a crisis on social media, which saps their time and focus and prevents them stepping back to consider the bigger picture.

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On the receiving end of the Social Simulator

We’re focussed on finding things that incident management teams did well, and where they need to improve.

Plotting my travels thumbnail image

Plotting my travels

My Grandparents were very proud of Dad’s travels with the Merchant Navy. On the wall of their home was a world map, with pins to show all the different places he’d visited. I used to spend hours looking at those pins and wondering. Since 2010 I’ve been using Foursquare and its later stablemate, Swarm. These two apps allow you to […]

Empowering prisons to engage online thumbnail image

Empowering prisons to engage online

Open government is a driver for the way we deliver a lot of our work at Helpful. The challenge with open government is that it’s often difficult to see the impact of changes to laws and processes, on the citizen. Prison reform is a case in point, which is why we chose to work with […]

Book recommendation: InstHEgram thumbnail image

Book recommendation: InstHEgram

Digital skills building doesn’t always lend itself to books. If you want to learn something you’ll Google it, speak to colleagues, or seek out training if you want more depth and support. Books have their place, but often for inspiration rather than practical learning. Sometimes I’m proved wrong and this is one of those occasions. […]

4 things you need to know about Instagram

If you’re anything like me, I get used to doing things in a routine and often become blissfully unaware that there is an easier way. So when I discovered a few nifty things about one of my favourite apps, Instagram, I thought I should share it with you all to hopefully make your image sharing lives […]

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Breaking the fear of blogging

Blogging, or its video equivalent, vlogging, have an important role to play in sharing ideas, encouraging feedback and explaining work that might be too detailed for 140 characters. Blogging tends to be overlooked, because it doesn’t offer the immediate gratification and ease of a social network. On something like Twitter you can publish within seconds and see responses […]

What does ‘advanced digital’ mean? thumbnail image

What does ‘advanced digital’ mean?

Tim explores how ‘advanced’ is a relative term in digital skills

5 reasons Facebook is better than you think thumbnail image

5 reasons Facebook is better than you think

The UK faces another vote this Summer. Whatever the impact on how the country is governed, we can be certain that the election process will generate a fresh round of speculation about how social media, and principally Facebook, is influencing political views/wrecking lives/creepy/sinister (delete as appropriate). It won’t surprise you to read that we have a […]

The Apple and the Worm: Stories in an online age

Stories today are shapeless, slippery fellows who slip through the fingers of all those who try to grasp them. To demonstrate this let’s look at the made-up story of the Apple and the Worm. 1986 Charles bought an apple from the Acme Fruit & Veg stall. When he got it home he took a bite […]

How Doris kicked up a social media storm

One of the topics we discuss during crisis training is the way journalists use social media to find context for stories, including photos and videos they can use in their reports. We show participants examples of how, before journalists even arrive on the scene, rolling news reports on their websites feature updates from eyewitnesses and […]

The merits of being messy online thumbnail image

The merits of being messy online

In a world of perfectly curated Instagram profiles and success-filled Facebook profiles, it’s good to have a messy space online. Somewhere you can experiment, explore and not worry too much about what others might see. You’ve probably read about fake news, the filter bubble and good or bad campaigns. It’s understandable that you may not want […]

A rogue Digital Jedi

Bias effects everything. From what we wear to how we design websites. And I am as guilty as everyone else. I think I know what an audience will react to. I think I know what will look good. I think I know what channels certain audiences will use. But I don’t. I found this out the […]

Are hyperlocals part of your engagement strategy?

Hyperlocal channels including blogs, twitter accounts, Facebook pages and groups, vary in size, scale and value. Finding the right ones to engage with could make a real difference to the success of your organisation’s communications strategy. For press teams used to dealing with more traditional media, the usefulness of hyperlocals can sometimes be overlooked. We’ve […]

It’s time to do a little bit more online

With all that’s going on in the world, reading websites, blogs and social media can be a little disheartening or overwhelming right now. A lot of high profile comments, views and headlines are seen by millions of people, just because of the person behind them, or the issues they’re discussing. It’s easy to feel like […]

How should Government Ministers determine a media crisis? thumbnail image

How should Government Ministers determine a media crisis?

Tim blogs about what former ministers’ reflections tell us about crisis

4 easy ways to share your social media highs from 2016

It’s that time of the year when everyone seems to be writing blog posts to reflect on the year that’s about to end. All very well if you have some time on your hands or lots to say. But what if you’re busy on New Years Eve or need to remind yourself what’s happened for […]

How to avoid mistakes when scheduling social media posts

Good social media is engaging, timely, and visually appealing. The pace of change and expectations for good quality content are ever increasing. For example more and more channels offer live video streaming. However, scheduling still has its place and done well can make your life a lot easier. Do try different tools There are a wide […]

2016, the rise of emojis thumbnail image

2016, the rise of emojis

 ➀➅🌅😀 I’m calling it. 2016 is the year of emojis. The past year has been famous (or infamous) for many things, but those little faces and pictures that we use in our digital messaging have really etched their way into our lives in 2016. Love them or hate them, emojis have now emerged as a […]

Helping Essex Council launch customer service on social

Essex County Council have been early adopters of social media channels for sharing important messages and promoting their services. In Summer 2016, the Council began to respond to individual comments and questions directed at their two main social media channels on Twitter and Facebook. Taking this step is no mean feat: Essex is one of […]

Happy Thanksgiving – Don’t burn your house down thumbnail image

Happy Thanksgiving – Don’t burn your house down

Claire shares a neat digital public safety campaign

It’s not a sprint, but it is a race thumbnail image

It’s not a sprint, but it is a race

Kate writes about sustaining your crisis comms response over time

Happy Thanksgiving – Don’t burn your house down

A good example here from the States about the power of video. Here are two pieces of content that are part of campaign to encourage people to cook their turkey responsibly (without setting fire to the house!) at Thanksgiving. We don’t all have access to content quite as dramatic as this. But compare this tweet (image, […]

Election news bot cuts through the chatter

Like many people, I was amazed to wake up to the news that Donald Trump was close to winning the US Presidential election. As the day has gone on the final result is gradually sinking in.  I’m a big fan of Hillary Clinton and wrote my dissertation on her transformation of the role of First Lady, […]

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Add a document icon to document links

Anthony shares a trick for adding a document icon to links automatically

What’s a crisis exercise really like? thumbnail image

What’s a crisis exercise really like?

A thorough social simulation should be demanding, but not impossible. And while we don’t say a lot about all the interesting projects we get involved with, that doesn’t mean we’re not having a lot of fun in the process.

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Mastering the Art of the Possible

Understanding how the web impacts your work isn’t always easy, particularly if most of your work happens offline. Working with people who are sat at desks, with computers and internet connections to hand, all day every day, is one thing. But helping those who are out doors, moving around and operating machinery is quite different. […]

Be sure to verify a comment or question, before you respond

Online customer service is surrounded by common sense advice. Don’t feed the trolls, keep customers informed even if you can’t help them straight away. That sort of thing. Happily, most teams we meet are increasingly well versed in this advice. However, there’s one area we don’t hear people mention very often, and it really should […]

Hello, audience: this is what’s on my mind thumbnail image

Hello, audience: this is what’s on my mind

I see myself as someone who has grown with social media. The other day I was discussing  with a close friend about how our presence on social media has adapted to suit our current lives.  When you look back over the past ten years and think about your social media footprint, isn’t it amazing how […]

Five tips for better corporate blogs thumbnail image

Five tips for better corporate blogs

Corporate blogs are a strange place. Often a neat aggregation of the different things an organisation does, rarely personal and hard work to maintain and promote. Generally, these days, I encourage organisations to avoid launching corporate blogs. Far more interesting and credible are proper blogs, written first-hand, by staff on their own channels. Staff who […]

Can you put a value on your social media campaign? thumbnail image

Can you put a value on your social media campaign?

How can you determine the value of your social media campaign? Number of people reached, retweets and shares, likes and comments, website hits?  All useful and easy to measure but how about ‘identifying a new gene associated with a disease’? I was really excited to read the news from ALS that the money raised from […]

On experts and amateurs thumbnail image

On experts and amateurs

Steph’s worried that celebrating digital ‘experts’ puts up an unhelpful barrier

How do we evaluate learning new skills and growing confidence? thumbnail image

How do we evaluate learning new skills and growing confidence?

We’re often asked: how do you evaluate the Digital Action Plan? Quite rightly, clients want to know their learning budget is being put to good use. We don’t (yet) have a fancy evaluation framework, or a standard way of scoring people. This is because: this programme is about confidence as much as skills. Confidence is very […]

Hello! thumbnail image

Hello!

Our new colleague Kate get shot at in her first week

Pokemon Go – police and councils play the game thumbnail image

Pokemon Go – police and councils play the game

Whether you’re a fan or just bewildered there’s no ignoring the Pokemon Go phenomenon. It’s not without controversy, but done well, Pokemon is an opportunity to engage with a new audience and share key messages about your organisation’s services and priorities. Here are just a couple of examples I’ve seen of public sector teams linking up their […]

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TM as PM in AMA – why not?

Tim wonders if Theresa May should be the first modern leader to leave Twitter and look elsewhere online for engagement

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Simple jQuery accordion

Anthony’s rebuilding one of our products, and shares a simple accordion pattern he’s been working on

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Make digital easier with these useful tools

There’s always a new online tool to try, so it’s easy to forget about our favourites. Those are tools that make digital easier. I shared these with Action Plan participants last week, so thought I would post them here too, for easy reference. Write more clearly: Hemingway A second pair of eyes on your words, in seconds. […]

Digital skills for Regulators thumbnail image

Digital skills for Regulators

Friends and family nod approvingly when I explain our training work. This is a first for me, as a former civil servant and journalist – until now the looks have been blank, or furrowed. What’s less easy to explain are the types of organisation we help. Large Government departments and financial services companies are recognised. […]

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Intranet resuscitation in the Cayman Islands

Luke blogs about supporting a new, more efficient and flexible intranet for the Government of the Cayman Islands

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With friends like these

Steph blogs on the Social Simulator site about how to handle unwanted celebrity endorsements

3 easy steps to speed up your site thumbnail image

3 easy steps to speed up your site

Phil’s been making his own site faster: here’s what he’s been tuning

#nhsgetsocial and the power of networked learning thumbnail image

#nhsgetsocial and the power of networked learning

I was in Leeds this week, meeting NHS staff who want to find out more about how to start, or develop, their use of social media. You can read about all the different talks and learning sessions on the hashtag: #nhsgetsocial The stand-out theme for me was about the importance of empowering staff to use […]

Testing… testing… thumbnail image

Testing… testing…

On the Digital Action Plan we like to challenge participants who are already confident producing content across a wide range of channels. One of the ways we do this is by asking them to test and improve their content. Here are a selection of examples which demonstrate the value of regular testing and improvement. Netflix: emotional […]

How better online engagement supports digital democracy thumbnail image

How better online engagement supports digital democracy

I was pleased to discover The Democratic Society is holding DemFest 2016, a new democracy festival this weekend, although sadly I won’t be able to make it to North Wales where the event is being held this year.  Digital democracy: beyond Boaty McBoatface One of the parts of the festival I’m most interested in the session […]

Time to abandon your own blog and switch to Medium? thumbnail image

Time to abandon your own blog and switch to Medium?

A couple of weeks ago, the Free Code Camp project made headlines by announcing they had decided to abandon their independent blog in favour of posting content directly to Medium, the popular online publishing platform. Go where your audience is On the Digital Action Plan, we advise participants to engage with their audiences in the places […]

Be more bossy thumbnail image

Be more bossy

When we’re helping people think about their online communications, to sell products, services or spread information, one of the most common mistakes we see is a failure to include a call to action. On the web, everyone spends a lot of time worrying about what happens if something goes wrong. If your post upsets some people, […]

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Helping leaders find their voice online

Tim writes for CIPR on how those in leadership roles can be helped to communicate naturally online

What would the digital equivalent of the Little Free Library look like? thumbnail image

What would the digital equivalent of the Little Free Library look like?

I stumbled across my first ever Little Free Library on Sunday afternoon whilst out in my local neighbourhood in Stirchley, Birmingham. My encounter got me thinking about what the digital equivalent of the Little Free Library would look like and how we can build it. What is a Little Free Library? The Little Free Library is […]

Making a molehill from a mountain: keeping up with digital developments thumbnail image

Making a molehill from a mountain: keeping up with digital developments

One of our aims for participants on the Digital Action Plan is to help form digital habits and some ongoing curiosity. People often ask: ‘how can I stay on top of all this stuff?’ The short answer is: you can’t, really. But there are other people who are great at identifying trends, inspiring ideas and case studies. […]

Why you should always listen carefully on social media thumbnail image

Why you should always listen carefully on social media

One of the key aims of the Digital Action Plan is to broaden participants experience of digital tools, and the many ways they can be used. Social media is so much more than just broadcasting messages. As the name implies social media should be social and involve engaging, debating, and listening. You can learn a […]

Create your own intranet stock photo library thumbnail image

Create your own intranet stock photo library

Luke shares a great tip from a client – build up an intranet stock photo library with a walk around the office

Making your online communications more engaging and accessible thumbnail image

Making your online communications more engaging and accessible

The Digital Action Plan learning programme gives participants the skills and confidence to listen, explain and talk with their audiences online. But how can we be sure we’re communicating in ways that are accessible to all? Here are some some tips for making your communications more accessible and engaging. 1. Sharpen your writing Attention spans are short […]

Running a great workshop thumbnail image

Running a great workshop

I’ve just finished delivering two weeks of digital workshops on behalf of different organisations. Mostly, I really enjoy planning and delivering workshops. There’s a nervous rush in anticipation of the characters you might meet, and an opportunity to be creative in how you set up the session. Workshops are an integral part of our Digital […]

What the Hackney Rat can teach us about online engagement thumbnail image

What the Hackney Rat can teach us about online engagement

I’m sure you will have seen something about the Hackney Rat this weekend, it has been a popular news story on Twitter, Facebook and national news. The story, and how Hackney Council chose to respond to it, can teach us a lot about effective online engagement. The story really took off on Friday lunchtime when the […]

Tips for running a successful social media surgery thumbnail image

Tips for running a successful social media surgery

On Tuesday afternoon, Tim (@timolloyd on Twitter) and I delivered some social media training for staff at the Office of Rail and Road (@railandroad on Twitter) in London. The training was made of up two parts: a lunchtime presentation by Tim on the characteristics of effective digital engagement followed by an informal ‘social media surgery’, which I […]

Adapting your online engagement to suit your audience thumbnail image

Adapting your online engagement to suit your audience

With the Digital Action Plan, we encourage participants to take the time to understand their audiences and to develop a well thought-through approach to online engagement that reflects the particular needs and expectations of different audiences. Recently, I’ve seen some good examples of Digital Action Plan participants successfully adapting their style of online engagement to […]

Reflections on #notwestminster 2016 thumbnail image

Reflections on #notwestminster 2016

Francis blogs about how digital can support local democracy

How digital can support local democracy – reflections on #notwestminster 2016 thumbnail image

How digital can support local democracy – reflections on #notwestminster 2016

On Saturday, I was lucky enough to get along to Huddersfield for #notwestminster, the second annual get together for everyone with an interest in improving local democracy. Through a combination of lightning talks and structured workshop sessions, we explored solutions to a wide range of problems facing local democracy – everything from how we provide […]

Supporting authentic digital engagement thumbnail image

Supporting authentic digital engagement

My role as product lead for the Digital Action Plan often involves working closely with senior civil servants to help them become more confident around digital engagement. I’d like to share with you what I have observed to be the main barriers to civil servants becoming authentic digital communicators and how we can overcome them.

How vulnerable are your people online? thumbnail image

How vulnerable are your people online?

Steph shares a nasty trick we pull on participants in some of our crisis simulation exercises

Internal comms is digital thumbnail image

Internal comms is digital

Tim’s surprised how many many internal comms folk he meets who say they ‘don’t do digital’

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A year of learning

If 2014 was about first steps for the Digital Action Plan program, then 2015 has been a hop, skip and a jump. I think we have learned a lot, and still have a long way to go, to understand what exactly motivates and helps people to develop their digital skills. 204 people have taken on a personalised […]

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Working with the statisticians

Luke’s working on incorporating machine learning and personalisation to make our client intranets more effective

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What good digital consultation looks like

Steph highlights a great summary by the team at Department of Health of what they’ve learned about effective digital consultation

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GovIntranet breakfast meeting

Luke shares the highlights of a breakfast session we held recently with our intranet clients to compare notes

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Back in the world of intranet

Luke rounds up some neat examples of how our clients are using their WordPress intranets

Leaders: what don’t you know? thumbnail image

Leaders: what don’t you know?

We’ve spent a number of weeks coaching senior leadership teams who want to do more online. Tim explores the things that often get in the way of great leadership using digital more effectively

A better website brief thumbnail image

A better website brief

Steph shares a template for a website development brief, based on what kind of elements help us as a supplier to write a useful proposal

20 things I learned at #CommsCamp15 thumbnail image

20 things I learned at #CommsCamp15

Steph shares what he picked up at CommsCamp, an event we sponsored

Operation Strong Tower: Heavily armed SAS troops and police stage mock terror attack on the streets of London

Operation Strong Tower: Heavily armed SAS troops and police stage mock terror attack on the streets of London This kept several of us rather busy this week…

The HelpfulHQ farewell playlist

Sad to say this is getting an outing this afternoon as we say goodbye to Al and Mark…

Can you help us build digital capability? thumbnail image

Can you help us build digital capability?

Tim writes about the Head of Digital Capability role we’re hiring for at Helpful HQ

Four new realities of crisis comms in the age of video thumbnail image

Four new realities of crisis comms in the age of video

Steph explores how real-time video is posing new challenges to corporate communications in a crisis

The digital comms team: a warm, safe blanket thumbnail image

The digital comms team: a warm, safe blanket

Tim’s changed his mind about the role of Communications teams when it comes to digital skills

Setting up WordPress and a database from the command line

Setting up WordPress and a database from the command line Phil from the team has a handy bash script which takes the hassle out of a laborious job.

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Five years down the road

Steph reflects on five years since Helpful Technology started

What do the latest UK government ministers mean for digital engagement? thumbnail image

What do the latest UK government ministers mean for digital engagement?

Tim takes a look at the latest ministerial appointments to see where the latest opportunities might be for more digital engagement between government and citizens

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WordPress On The Inside

Steph and Luke talked at the WordPress VIP Big Media and Enterprise Meetup in London about the cultural change behind WordPress-based intranets in government

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Culturevist – Tim Lloyd

Tim is interviewed on the Culturevist blog about technology, organisational culture and what he’d rather be doing

The intranet staff directory thumbnail image

The intranet staff directory

Finding colleagues can be tricky. Luke blogs about how to make the process easier and richer.

The complicated world of charity crisis communications thumbnail image

The complicated world of charity crisis communications

Steph writes about the issues for charities and other organisations trying to justify the counter-intuitive in social media

10 questions every Government comms leader should be asking themselves thumbnail image

10 questions every Government comms leader should be asking themselves

If Government communications leaders really want to embed digital in their teams, they need to challenge themselves. Tim poses ten questions to get leaders thinking about their role in digital.

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Sponsoring ‘sorry’: how and when to use promoted social media in a crisis

Steph writes about the tricky question of when organisations should pay to promote their crisis messages in social media

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Cabinet Office minister Francis Maude to resign at next election

Steph and Tim are quoted in this ComputerWorld piece looking back at the legacy of Francis Maude at the Cabinet Office

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Ready for Day 1

Steph tells the story of a change in ministers, and the jump-starting of digital engagement which it can prompt

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GovIntranet 4.0 in beta

Luke publishes an update on developments on our WordPress-based intranet platform, GovIntranet

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Buying from real people

Tim thinks that, as a consumer, it’s time for him to take a stand. In 2015 he’ll only be buying from companies whose staff are allowed to engage online. His blog post explains why.

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Simpler, clearer, fairer

Steph writes about fairness as a test for digital government services, in response to the Digital Government Review which we helped to put online

Working with the green and yellow dots | Clear message thumbnail image

Working with the green and yellow dots | Clear message

We’re helping teams to use digital tools and techniques by learning and making, with personalised plans. Tim explains why.

Unconscious digital thumbnail image

Unconscious digital

Some people will swear they don’t have any skills or experience to bring to digital communications. Tim reckons otherwise.

4 steps to a successful communication strategy for online crises thumbnail image

4 steps to a successful communication strategy for online crises

Steph and Chris are presenting at J. Boye’s Aarhus 2014 conference next week. The team at J. Boye caught up with Steph to share a few thoughts on what good and bad performance look like in terms of handling social media in a crisis

How should a digital press office work? thumbnail image

How should a digital press office work?

Tim’s changed his mind about digital press offices. Social media screens bolted to the wall won’t cut it. Press officers have to be ‘of the internet’, not simply publishing stuff to it.

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Toilets, glass doors and organograms

For internal communication teams, is digital restricted to forums and intranets? No way, says Tim

Social media personas thumbnail image

Social media personas

Tim has been helping clients to overcome their worries about getting involved with online conversations – and having a bit of fun along the way

The great offices of State thumbnail image

The great offices of State

Steph highlights a nice digital launch around the Government’s Estates Strategy

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Parliament Week website: user experience design in action

Luke blogs about his and the team’s work on the new website for Parliament Week, informed by user research

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Social Media changes everything about Public Affairs

Tim spoke at a Social Media Week London event organised by Keene PR on how social media is changing public affairs from the government perspective

Shutting the stable door: handling data security breaches in social media thumbnail image

Shutting the stable door: handling data security breaches in social media

Steph blogs at The Social Simulator, our social media crisis training and simulation service, about strategies for handling the reputational side of a data breach in social media

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Trust in the workplace

Tim writes about the trust that organisations have to put in their staff, if audiences are to be properly looked after online

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The digital comms planner

Steph shares a planning tool he an Al have been working on to help communicators plan integrated digital activity

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Small umbrellas

Steph blogs about policymakers using social media to find the unrepresented voices, and challenge the reliance on stakeholder and representative groups

Cake or death? thumbnail image

Cake or death?

Tim writes about the great work social media editors are doing online – often in very difficult circumstances

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CommsCamp14

Al blogs about what was discussed at CommsCamp in Birmingham earlier this week

A framework for digital skills: The Digital Action Plan thumbnail image

A framework for digital skills: The Digital Action Plan

Al shares a work-in-progress framework for thinking about digital communications skills

Content Migration Guide thumbnail image

Content Migration Guide

Luke shares a simple tool and process for managing the migration of content to a new website

comms2point0 – 6 youtube film styles that work in the public sector  thumbnail image

comms2point0 – 6 youtube film styles that work in the public sector 

Steph shares six ways to use YouTube for public sector communications on the community best practice site, comms2point0

Third Sector: Big Lottery Fund launches ‘online conversation’ about its new framework thumbnail image

Third Sector: Big Lottery Fund launches ‘online conversation’ about its new framework

Third Sector covers our innovative ‘conversation’ site work for Big Lottery Fund, a partnership with Delib

What holds people back? thumbnail image

What holds people back?

Steph blogs about how attitude and critical mass are what counts in building an organisation’s digital skills

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Digital engagement and crisis communications

Steph’s been addressing a group of public servants in Melbourne, Australia on lessons from the UK on digital engagement and crisis handling in a social media world.

Our intranet theme gets a staff directory thumbnail image

Our intranet theme gets a staff directory

Luke reveals some of the new staff directory templates and features in our WordPress intranet theme.

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Track documents as pageviews in Google Analytics

Luke gets down to the nitty-gritty of tracking document downloads as part of your content trail in Google Analytics.

Sensing Spaces: Architecture Re-imagined at the Royal Academy thumbnail image

Sensing Spaces: Architecture Re-imagined at the Royal Academy

Our work doesn’t normally make it into Harper’s Bazaar, but then we’re not usually creating iPad web applications for exhibitions quite as cool as the Royal Academy’s ‘Sensing Spaces’ installation. The reviews are coming in, and audiences seem to be loving the exhibition.

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Tags VS Keywords

Luke blogs about how publishers use tags and keywords on the web and intranet.

In 2014, let’s get digital skills out of the classroom thumbnail image

In 2014, let’s get digital skills out of the classroom

Steph blogs about helping people develop new digital skills through practice and support, beyond traditional classroom courses – and introduces a project we’re working on to create a ‘digital gym’

How TfL is communicating 24 hour Tube changes internally thumbnail image

How TfL is communicating 24 hour Tube changes internally

Over on All Things IC, Rachel Miller reviews a site our client Transport for London have launched as part of the Fit For the Future Stations strategy

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GovIntranet beta release 3

Luke blogs about the new release of GovIntranet, our lightweight WordPress theme for intranets

Whither digital communication? thumbnail image

Whither digital communication?

Steph blogs about the Government Digital Communications Capability Review