Now that we're into the public beta it's time to think about one of the Big 7 question, in this case how we promote the site.

For context here's the description from the The 7 Essential Meta Questions of Every Beta page.

This is rapidly becoming a hot issue across the entire network: how to promote your site and how to reach out to the experts and pundits in your industry. We can come up with budgets and promotions but — more than any other issue raised here — the means and ideas about how to reach your target audience HAS TO come from you and your community. Has to. Has to, has to, has to! We simply are not experts in your field. We don’t have the the connections nor the experience you bring to the table. You are both our evangelist and our ambassador.

Stack Overflow has been a huge, red-hot success story in the programming arena. But that early success came in large part to the participation of Jeff Atwood and Joel Spolsky, both cult-classic bloggers and celebrities in their field. We want that same success for you and your community. That’s why we need to identify the Jeffs and the Joels of your industry. We need bloggers, pundits, podcasters, publishers, celebrities… anyone who can rally the troops, so to speak.

Meta is the perfect venue reach out and ask around about who knows whom. Ask your friends to ask their friends. The people needed to make your site a huge success are already within your reach.

For more detail see: A Recipe to Promote Your Site

Myself, I've mentioned the site on my twitter, my writing blog and a few mailing lists I'm on with other writers. I would like to try and get a plug on some of the writing podcasts, but I personally don't have the clout do so.

3 Answers 3


One of the biggest things that we want to do to promote the site is get quality links to specific questions so that we begin to rise through the ranks on Google queries. That means that members ought to be linking to interesting questions from their twitter accounts, blogs, facebook pages, and other locations. We are looking to drive search engine traffic to the site.

Ideally at some point we also want to start getting literary agents, people in the publishing industry, and well-known authors who blog interested in the site. Another place to look might be literature and writing professors who blog. We may want to open a second meta question to gather suggestions for who to approach. We have a pretty quality set of questions already, and might be able to gather some interest and some good links. On top of that getting more well-known industry people to participate will up the value of the site to prospective new members.

Finally once we are past beta we may want to put together a proposal for the SO team to sponsor members of our community going to an industry conference - giving talks or setting up a booth. They've said that if we put together a good enough proposal they will do it. I don't view this as a helpful step until we've put together a good elevator pitch and have our own design post-beta. Otherwise we won't yet be correctly branded.

  • 1
    There's more then just industry conferences. Most general fan conventions have a long number of writing panels and interests. It would be nice to make up some fliers (once we have the branding) that people can put out at their local conventions. A con is a great place to network, doubly so if you're already going. I know I'll take some to Norwescon, even if I have to make them up myself.
    – Fox Cutter
    Commented Dec 2, 2010 at 17:40
  • Another thought if we find a way to bring in big name pros, on the Critters website SFWA members start out with an advantage as their have proven themselves by being a SFWA member. It might be worth seeing if we could do something like that a s well, maybe starting SFWA members with some bonus reputation to reflect their status (assuming the SE software allows that).
    – Fox Cutter
    Commented Dec 2, 2010 at 17:43
  • @Fox Cutter - not sure what the developers will think on that idea, but they do check here and might approve.
    – justkt
    Commented Dec 2, 2010 at 17:48
  • @Fox - This is an interesting idea, but unlike Critters, we're catering to all genres of fiction, as well as nonfiction, technical writing, etc. etc. We'd have to figure out which professional organization memberships would qualify for the "special" bonus.
    – sjohnston
    Commented Dec 9, 2010 at 17:55

I'm an editor, and I'm planning on sending a link to this site to some of my clients and friends who write. I suspect there are others who would like to do the same.

Do we have a standard blurb we can send out, something friendly, short, and inviting? If someone wants to tackle a first draft, I'd be happy to smooth it out. Any takers? I'll leave this answer as Community Wiki so anyone can add text below this.

Dear /Name/,

I have been a fan of your {blog|podcast|zine} for some time now. As a {writer|editor|agent|employee at /organization/} I am constantly seeking information about the writing world. I've recently discovered a new site for questions and answers about writing and writing careers. This site seeks to be a place for experts to ask and answer questions about all genres of writing and many aspects of the writing discipline. Some of the questions since the site's inception that show its potential include:

We are looking for more experts to participate in this site, and I thought of you. Would you be willing to visit http://writers.stackexchange.com and check it out? If you like it, we'd also love if you encourage others you know in the business and art of writing to take a look.


/Your Name/

  • 1
    I added a letter below that people can tweak. It's more for sending to bloggers than friends, clients, and editors, but it can be adjusted
    – justkt
    Commented Dec 23, 2010 at 17:31

I think you need a way to critique writing. Let people submit their writing and let other review it. If you can already do this...well, sorry.


You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .