Hello, F3 PAX.
If the team in comz has done its role well, you’ve probably never heard of nation IT or comz (or if you have, it may have been the now-defunct firstname.lastname@example.org email address).
Our history in the areas of technology and communications has been one of evolution. As Dredd often states, we build 43 feet ahead of the road being traveled on. We’ve gone from email-only backblasts to various site versions to regions using social media and tools like Slack, Zapier, G Suite and more to coordinate amongst their pax.
For the first six years of our evolution, both “nation-wide” blog posts and pages have lived right alongside posts from Charlotte, Dallas, Raleigh, Columbia, Lehigh Valley, Atlanta, and more. It’s all been in one place, managed centrally for the benefit of all.
Six-plus years in, we’re now ready for yet another evolution.
I’ve let our co-founders and board, the regional nantans, and IT Qs know this summer we are retiring much of the local/regional functionality from the nation site, such as pre-blasts and backblasts, and returning “control” of that back to the regions.
This specifically means regions will formally have the freedom and flexibility to communicate locally in whatever ways best suit their PAX, and the nation site will return to more of a place for topics like our growing map and functionality, exercises database, lexicon updates, F3 groups in the news, new gear, Dredd blog posts, F3F, and more.
What Changed The Thinking?
First, we’ve learned over years of data that the overwhelming majority of site traffic is to what we call static pages… places like “exercises,” “about us,” “locations” aka the map, etc., and yet the overwhelming amount of custom PAX and IT requests revolve around change on local backblasts, PAX permissions, and workout location tags.
The scale of regional updates and asks was not the main issue. Sure, we are and were busy. But the subtle differences in the asks versus desire to customize at a local level showed us we were holding back the creativity of regions who were ready to push the envelope of what we could do in our service to the greater collection of regions. In short, I/we can not scale as well as others could in making the creativity work.
Second, because many men in our regions now have more technological knowledge than we even did collectively a couple years ago, we feel now more than ever there’s a unique opportunity to see more examples of the reverse-flow incubator in effect.
So your local IT Qs and Nantans will be now free to choose technologies other than WordPress if they want, like a social network, or to allow for image uploads but monitor themselves. They can use more custom forms, put their own scheduling software to use, etc. etc.
Ok, So What Will F3Nation.com and the Nation Comz Guy(s) Now Do?
Well, as noted the nation site will return to more of a place for topics like our growing map and functionality, exercises database, lexicon updates, F3 groups in the news, new gear, Dredd blog posts, F3F, and more.
Here are some other ideas we’re working on…
- Nation site will no longer serve region backblasts, so we’ll need to archive these and give them to the regions that want them, too.
- The nation site will have a nation-level news/blog. For example, Dredd will have a place for his #truthnuggets, OBT and Robber can announce new gear/things like GrowRuck, the LEAP team and Crotch Rocket can chat expansion, I can put out marketing or media info, etc.
- The nation site will no longer have the same concept of “registered users.” Our blog posts will have comments, yes, but you’ll probably do so through something other than registering (TBD, we have a couple options we’re finalizing).
- We’ll still offer email for regions
- Maps, Exercises, Lexicon, other global pages remain and will get more attention.
- We will still link to regions/locations
- We’ll share what’s working in other areas or good media coverage that can help you in your area.
- We’ll focus more on our F3 Podcast, which has its primer series going now and will be on its release schedule soon.
- Maps, which is now a more critical component than ever, will get attention and a possible overhaul.
We are setting July 15 as a date where we’re targeting turning off the ability for regions to post directly to F3nation.com. Many of the regions have already started moving, as noted earlier the IT Qs in each region have had this information for some time.
And what about (my question)?
Lastly, if you’re into what drives digital marketing and sites, you may have a few questions not answered here.
Maybe you want to know things like how smaller regions or expansion will work with backblasts (in progress but not fully decided) or if the major drop in page-views aka clicks will matter (nope, we are not in the ad business).
In the end, we don’t have all the answers but trust the PAX will rise to both ask and answer. Such is the beauty of the starfish.
(Any questions, hit me in the comments.)