Natural Homes Content Management

 

Introduction to Natural Homes

Natural Homes is a not-for-profit organisation that provides a growing mainstream audience of 1.8+ million followers, growing at 15,000+ people per week, with content about natural building and natural living skills, products and services. It provides the practitioners of those skills, products and services with free access to the audience which includes 20,000+ daily web visitors and 70,000+ group members. Natural Home's goal is:

To redresses the marketing balance between sustainable and unsustainable businesses by providing environmentally ethical, but often less profitable, natural builders, crafts people and environmental organisations with free access to a mainstream audience.

The team have grown the Natural Homes audience to bring mainstream media opportunities to the natural building community. Collectively we can make a significant statement that encourages people to build naturally and thereby put pressure on planning authorities all over the world to adopt natural building methods and materials.
 

The 7 step publication plan

To help artisans to get the best out of the Natural Homes network we have established a 7 step publicity process for your projects. It uses a marketing mix of website articles, Facebook pages and Facebook groups with other social media techniques. The 7 step process applies to all of our content threads i.e. natural building , natural living and homesteading .

The graphic below illustrates the 7 step process to capture content from artisans, deliver it to our group members (70,000+), Facebook followers (1.8 million+) and website readers (20,000+ per day) making it easily accessible to the mass media. 

At (see below) the artisan e.g. a natural builder, registers workshops ideally 3 months ahead of the event via the workshop calendar. These workshops are publicised by Natural Homes on its various language pages e.g. English, Spanish and Russian.

At posts are made to the appropriate group i.e. natural building , natural living and homesteading . These posts share your progress, express your skill, provide feedback from peers, inspire members, add to the growing catalogue of knowledge and establish content that will be linked back to at step 4 when an article is published on naturalhomes.org about your project.

At the artisan makes publications on his/her website and social media accounts (e.g. Facebook, Pinterest and Google+) progressively adding well described content to an album that represents the project. Here is an example from Raquel Rodríguez about making sgraffito tiles.

At when the project is complete the artisan notifies Natural Homes. Content is gathered from the group and artisan's web and social media pages for an article in English on naturalhomes.org which is publicised via its Facebook page and other media outlets. The article (see example) will contain links to the discussions in step 2. The English article is eventually translated to other languages and publicised again. This step establishes multiple links from naturalhomes.org to the artisan's website helping his/her search engine ranking.   

At the artisan ensures print quality versions of the best of the pictures at step 3 are saved in well described project albums in flickr.com. The flickr account does not need to be public. The pictures should not be branded or carry a copyright protection watermark. Publishers each have their own copyright protection method to protect your rights. The description of the picture should end with a note that explains who (person or company or domain name) the picture should be copyrighted to.

NOTE: We recommend you keep pictures around 5Mb or higher at least 2,000px wide. A 5Mb picture would allow a double page spread in an A4 size magazine. Editors will often crop down to a suitable picture within the image you provide so additional data quality is recommended. Flickr offers 1Tb of free storage. Here is a guide for taking pictures of natural buildings.

At , if you are a member of an association for your craft, we recommend you write a case study for the work. The association will use it to represent your craft at trade shows and you can add it to the discussions in our Facebook groups at step 2.

At the mainstream media discover the article about your work on naturalhomes.org and contact us for publication support [most recent National Geographic Traveller, 11th May 2016]. Our interface to publishers is the 'Publisher's Library' which provides all the contact details, project summary and links needed for the publisher to write their article. Natural Homes assures, on your behalf, that their publication will include links to your website, either in print or online or both.
 

   
 

The Media

Increasingly we get contacted by well known media brands who want to write about the artisan's work they find via Natural Homes. They contact Natural Homes rather than the artisan because they know that an organisation with a large audience understands the media business and its constraints.

People that do the job of finding content for brands like National Geographic are almost always under the pressure of a tight deadline. If they think that they will have to wait for the content they need then they will dump the opportunity and move on to the next prospect. If Natural Homes can't fulfil their request quickly then the artisan looses the opportunity to have their work publicised.

The Natural Homes website provides publishers like National Geographic with a quick to search thumbnail view of all its articles. The publisher can filter the view according to a variety of tags, e.g. strawbale, thatch, offgrid etc. To improve the speed at which a publisher can establish an article for publication Natural Homes will tag those articles where the artisan has provided Natural Homes with a link to their project's flickr album. This will allow the publisher like National Geographic to filter articles that have print quality pictures available so they can meet their publication deadline with confidence.