What are Public Projects
First of all, let’s clear up the concept of a public project. When you create one project in your project management tool like GitScrum, you have some privacy settings options. That means you can make your project “private” or “public”.
Of course, you will decide to keep many projects private. Sometimes you don’t mean to release them to the media or the public yet. Others may include information that’s appropriate only for your team, for instance.
On the other hand, there might be many situations when you can take advantage of public projects. In project management, a project is “public” when you share it on the web, unlock its privacy setting, so anyone on the internet can see it.
The fact that the project is shared does not mean that it is concluded. You, as an author, can build a story and engage your audience to contribute to your project, from the start or from the stage you choose.
Why make projects Public?
See some opportunities and advantages you can create with public projects:
Promotional Marketing for a New Brand
When there is a new brand your company wants to start promoting, a public project is a good tool to showcase it on the web. You can select how much information will be available to the public and release gradual “spoilers” and news about your product. It works well when you integrate this initiative with other efforts like promoting your project to influencers and on social media, and interacting with them.
Crowdsourcing for a Product
A public project is an excellent open channel for your potential consumers to contribute to your product. You can invite the public to help you create product names, prints and even run online contests. Designers and other professionals can also help you by adding comments on trends and materials.
Research about the Audience’s Preferences
In your public project, you can post sketches, prototype images (provided that they are already law protected or just similar to the final ones) and make polls to check the audience’s preferences. Be aware of the probability that your competitors might see your content, copy and release sooner than you. That’s a risk you need to balance, but many pioneer companies consider it worth taking.
Promote Collaboration Among Partners and Professionals Worldwide
You can use your project as an opportunity to create a small community and start new virtual relationships. The key to making this work is presenting a strong purpose that will motivate even busy people to participate. Make it clear how innovative your product or service is, how it will change people’s lives and who will benefit from them.
Make Your Project a Reference
Your project has the potential to be a reference when you get to engage a group of people to contribute with it, while they also enjoy learning from the process. As long as you present the project’s evolution, you demonstrate you care about the public and about doing your best.
Public projects are a chance to promote brands worldwide, to get international collaboration, and expand your collaborative network.
Relate With Your Target Audiences
Projects are a mature platform to relate with your target audiences. People tend to feel valued when they are consulted, so this strengthens your relationship bond with them. Customers who participate in this kind of experience establish an emotional attachment to the brand, help promote it among friends and develop more brand loyalty.
Steps to Create a Public Project
Just because you create a public project about something, it doesn’t mean you will publish all information about it there.
1. The first thing you will do is set the goals of your project and define your target audience(s).
Why is it important to fix your goals and target audience(s)? Well, you might direct your project to your final customers or to retailers, technicians, and professionals involved in your products sales. So, only you can determine the main scope of your project.
Examples of goals for public projects:
- improve a product that you are developing;
- researching the audience’s needs to determine new features for an app;
- presenting a product to specialists from a niche and allowing them to contribute to the product evolution, adding credibility (doctors, dentists, physiotherapists, nutritionists, designers, decorators…);
- present a new brand or product to the determined audience(s).
2. Secondly, you will elaborate content to interact with them.
You are free to create and determine your project’s content. Some information is important to identify it and help engage your audiences:
- The project unique purpose (why should your target audience be interested in it, how the product makes their lives better);
- Inform the project page purpose, the activities you will run and publish there, how often (news, polls, discussions, contests?);
- Prepare technical content to show authority, but in an accessible language (reports and friendly charts on your efforts, for instance);
- Use storytelling to engage your audience: tell stories about people who inspired the creation of the product, how it was created, the journey of the professionals dedicated to it… use an emotional approach to show how you and your team are committed to this product.
3. Then, ask for their feedback and contribution.
After you started your product and brand story, it’s time to include the target audience as a new important character, probably the leading character. That’s how they must feel. The contributions they add to your “story” will be essential to determine the final chapters, and you can even create forms of rewarding them for this with public thanks and mentions. Remember, the relation must be an exchange of benefits. The mechanism is always to ask for the contribution, and demonstrate gratitude afterward.
4. Improve your project management tool with your Custom Brand
If you are investing time in creating a project for marketing purposes, there’s no other brand you should showcase, but yours, right? How great is it to know you can make your project management entirely customized with your own logo? Make sure all visitors of your project will see your brand all the time, using GitScrum White Label. That will make your project efforts worth it.
With this feature, you can even configure your project to use your domain or subdomain name you previously created in your hosting service. That will give your project a truly professional appearance, showing you’ve got robust tools of your own.
5. After you complete the steps above, you will set up a strategy to integrate your project with other communication efforts.
That is for the project to remain visible to people – and should include mentions on social media groups, your website/blog news, press releases, on a weekly basis. It’s no use creating the project, adding releases and questions about the product and leaving it stuck. Waiting for people to “find” your project won’t do.
Yes, you must share your project directly to the interested people by email, using the shareable URL link. But besides that, you will need to persuade people to join it. So, create some communication sprints to warm up your project interaction.
6. Create a strategy to promote your project
Like everything you do in the company, you must plan your public project to conquer engagement. So, one possible idea for you to engage more participants is to convince a group of previous volunteers as contributors (professionals or customers) to be present and active right from the start. You can ask some friends and oldest clients to do so. This way, when you release the project to the media and influencers, they will see the interaction is already on, and you will motivate them to enter.
7. Finally, after announcing your project exists, you must keep it alive!
Post your evolutions and new increments often, publish teaser ads. You can also add some promotional actions and gifts to stimulate participation if you wish – “Answer the poll and win a freebie”. You can use gamification actions and plan inbound marketing actions inside your project.
Plan the production and release of testimonials and videos from people that are in need of the product, then the ones trying the product.