One of my great concerns, while starting the project of Blind Dates, was that participants will be easily discouraged and disappointed if the blog has not many readers and comments.
And the truth is that among thousands of blogs and websites, it is not easy for a new blog to be distinguished.
For that reason we have structured a basic line of promoting the blog and later the web-radio. Our latest actions were:
1. Partner NGO: As we cooperate with a local NGO, United Societies of Balkans, we are trying to promote the blog and the whole project through the Facebook Page and Group of the NGO and its monthly newsletters, that receive about 700 people.
2. Social Media Power: We have created a Facebook Page, “The Blind Dates” and a Twitter account, @TheBlindDates.
Facebook is not very popular among the participants, as its environment is not very friendly to visually impaired people. We make efforts to introduce Facebook to our working team, by explaining how important tool is it for promoting blogs and sites. To intrigue them more, we have posted some articles in the blog under the topic, Visually Impaired People and Social Media.
3. Questions: Questions is a Facebook application that helps you keep your Facebook page alive and interactive.
It is easy and effective. The user posts a question and selects the way respondents can answer. The easiest way is to suggest multiple choices. By answering the question, the respondent can link to the Fb page and also see the results.
Our first question was “Is Thessaloniki a friendly city for visually impaired people?”. The answers vary from Very Much to Not at All. The results will be used to write an article and post it in the blog. The aim is to involve more people in the project and spread awareness about the mobility problems visually impaired people face in their everyday life.
4. Link Building: First Step was to search and find other websites and blogs with relevant content to our blog. Next step was to send a letter to the owners of blogs and sites where we kindly ask them if they want to exchange links in order to promote one the other.
5. Logo: A volunteer is eager to create a logo for Blind Dates.
Our next target is to approach media, by sending press releases and by coming in contact with journalists we already know in order to write about the Project. In the end of October, is also scheduled to organize a Press Conference in Thessaloniki.
Giorgos Proestos, one of the core participants, has already given an interview in the Thessaloniki Radio Program, local branch of the National Radio Station, about Blind Dates and the relation between blind people and technology. We will post it soon. Unfortunately the interview is in Greek, but we will present an excerpt in English.
We will also print some flyers about the existence of the Project and the blog which will also be translated in Braille language. The flyers will be available online and will be distributed in the Thessaloniki School for the Blind, Panhellenic Association for the Blind and in bars, schools and cultural organizations.
For any suggestions you may have about promoting our work, feel free to contact us anytime to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank you very much!