8 questions to ask yourself when creating a call-out to your community

person planning a call-out - top questions when creating a Contribly call-out

8 Questions to ask yourself when/before creating an audience call-out

Here are the top questions to ask yourself when creating a Contribly call-out. These 8 questions are built to help you plan a mini individual strategy when you engage your community.

Planning out a call-out can help extensively with its success and the success of your audience growth overall.

1. What are your potential contributors’ motivations? Will this affect how I word my call-out?

When creating a Contribly call-out, thinking about why audience members would share their stories, photos and videos with you is very important. If it is a competition, it might be in order to win a prize. Possibly, it’s because they would like to show off to their peers, or they are just very passionate about the subject you are highlighting. 


As a result, you must think about how you word your call-out and what terms you use. Ie. Will you say ‘send us’/ ‘share’ – are you asking for advice? Are you treating them as peers or fans?

Above all, never forget to explain to your community why they are sending content, and where it will be published. This will increase engagement and most importantly trust.

2. Who are the first dozen people you want to contribute?

It’s best practice to contemplate who our target audience is when you create your Contribly call-out. Furthermore, question who would be the first to get involved in the call-out that you set. Thinking of this will allow you to potentially pre-fill some of the galleries. As a consequence it will help you set the tone of your call-out but more importantly set an expectation for quality by modelling what you hope to receive.

3. What information (data) about this segment of community do I want to collect?

First of all, consider your overall aim. Is it to build a database for a potential sponsor? Or to know what your audience are interested in? Maybe to be able to easily contact your audience? Or rather to share the photos on your instagram account? 

Then, consider what information you might need to collect. email/ instagram handle/ family name? location ? age?

4. Where am I going to use my contribution widgets?

A useful question when creating a Contribly call-out is how am I going to use the Contribly widgets. Particularly the call-to-action widget.

The Contribly contribution widgets are the ‘forms’ / ‘upload buttons’ that collect the audience content and data.

Usually these are pasted onto a website or article. However you might decide to share them with a collaborator or sponsor so that you can gather audience contributions from various locations across the web.

Don’t forget to:

  •  explain to your community why you are requesting their contributions and 
  • inform them where it will be published. Communities find it disheartening to spend time sharing a photo or story that they never see published, or to which they never receive an answer. 

5. How will I use the content and where will it be published?

When creating a Contribly call-out, the photos, videos, stories you receive from your community should be used as much as possible. So where the content will be published is a top question to ask when creating a Contribly call-out.


For that reason consider publishing them: – on your social media, in your articles, in a publication, within galleries (the best of, and a general gallery with all the uploads) etc.

Do not forget to credit the contributors or even @them if you have their user details.


The contributions you receive can be used and reused. For example, using the same photo call out, you might want to create:

  1. a gallery with all the photos you receive, 
  2. chose 5 of them that you will share on your social media (with a link for others to get involved as well, and tagging the author) 
  3. A weekly article with your top 5/10 of the week or top photos so far. Remember to tag your contributors, let them know where you have published their contributions and allow others to join the conversation with a redirect to the upload widget.A useful question when creating a Contribly call-out and 

6. How can you take part in or co-opt conversation elsewhere online?

A useful question when creating a Contribly call-out is how can I activate and co-opt conversation outside my usual sphere. The online world has many pockets of communities and conversations happening on a variety of topics. There are many existing communities that might want to be involved with what you are doing. Consider where these conversations might take place and join. It could be a facebook group, or a blog, or just using a relevant hashtag on twitter. 

7. How am I going to let my community know where the content will be published?

There are many ways to let your audience know where you will publish their content.

  1. Use the description of your call-out to publish a link to where you will use the content on your pages. (if you haven’t created the article/gallery page yet, don’t forget to go back when it is ready and add the link then)
  2. Email the contributor directly to let them know you have received their contribution, and where it will be published.
  3. If you are going to use the content on social media say so and don’t forget to tag the contributor.

The community expects a full circle. Call-out – contribute – publish – share – thank – share again


Remember, using the content you receive is crucial to growing your community. Communities are generative, this means they expect the conversation to keep going and to see the fruits of their labour. 


For that reason, if a call-out is left open and the content never engaged with, you are bound to see a decline in the total number of contributions throughout. 


Furthermore, if an audience doesn’t know what will happen with their contribution they may lose trust in your organisation.


Therefore, if your aim is to increase community engagement and the number of contributions you receive, you must use their contributions and let them know where you intend to do so. Remember, the reason your audience get’s involved is to see their pictures on social media, galleries with their contributions, and their stories shared.

8. How will I thank the contributors / follow on with the conversation?

 When you create a Contribly call-out, your community shares their photos, videos and stories with you for free. They have many motivations for doing so, but it never hurts to remember that this is a relationship based on respect and trust. How can you thank them, privately and publicly?

Contribly collects a variety of valuable data, you can also consider using this to show off your best contributions / contributors / assignments and even the locations that are the most active! 



In conclusion, thinking of the full audience trajectory can really increase your engagement and the amount of success you will achieve over all. 


If you have any questions or want to join one of Contribly’s online community strategy trainings, please contact hello@contribly.com

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