Have you ever had a hankering for pancakes at midnight? Or a grilled cheese at 3 AM? That's what 24-hour diners are for. Open around the clock, always welcoming, with an endless menu that has exactly what you’re craving.
Whether it's 12 PM or 12 AM, your school district's website should be just like that reliable diner: always on, always lively, and serving up just what users are hungry for.
With families and stakeholders heading online for news, updates, and announcements, it's critical for public school districts to share information and maintain that 24/7/365 digital front.
But who really wants to pull the late shift?
Updating your school district's website doesn't mean working 24/7. The answer lies in using automated communications tools, powerful integrations, and the time-savings of the COPE (Create Once, Publish Everywhere) strategy to keep the lights on.
With a few tools and a sprinkle of strategy, your school's websites can be just as lively, serving up content that can match the expectations of a community that's always hungry for more.
Chef's Choice: Create Once, Publish Everywhere
With COPE, you create content once and repurpose it across your sites multiple times, saving you time by reshaping it to fit various sections of your website. Write a news story about the school soccer team's win, then put it on the homepage, drop it in the newsletter, and share it on social media – all without repeating the work. Is there a new blog from your superintendent? Publish it to their leadership page, push it to the blog, then pull it into your newsletter.
With Finalsite’s content management system, Composer, and its Post module, an inspiring success story of a student could first be featured on the homepage, then find its way into a monthly newsletter, and later be highlighted in an end-of-year review – all from a single creation point.
You could also plan weeks or months in advance, ensuring your website always has fresh content to greet its visitors. Just like Elmwood Park CUSD 401 has done, district-wide news can be shared on its site, then tagged with the appropriate school, and the news story is displayed on specific school sites. Order up!
Early Bird Special: Subscriptions with Posts and RSS Feeds
When a news story goes live, a blog gets posted, a last-minute change to a calendar, or an update goes live, let your subscribers be the first to know. Composer’s Post module lets users sign up to receive a notification as soon as content goes live, no matter what time it’s served up.
They’re like your school's personal news channel — and think about the convenience when creating a piece of news; it's automatically shared across your district's different platforms.
Klein Independent School District makes subscribing to its newsroom, calendars, and more a piece of cake. Once they're signed up, families can be the first to know when new content and updates go live.
Soup du Jour: Social Media Integration
Social media often serve as major communication channels for many families and stakeholders, and by bridging your district’s website with these platforms, you not only expand your reach but also foster a deeper sense of community.
Integrate your district’s site with your social accounts, instantly share news across platforms, and let everyone enjoy the content — your users don’t even need to follow you on social media to view the latest daily Facebook, X, or Instagram posts.
As another bonus, it’s this cross-posting strategy that amplifies your content's audience without extra effort, and by integrating user-generated content with hashtags, your website transforms into a real-time news source for the people, by the people.
Counter Service: Automated Communications & Workflows
Automated communications provide essential information without all the manual work. Imagine crafting an onboarding and welcome message just once to new employees and staff instead of sending one-off messages manually to each recipient. An automated email messaging system like Finalsite Workflows can deliver the message based on engagement or after a specific time period during the school year. This proactive style of communication ensures users are met with fresh, relevant content.
All-Day Breakfast: Scheduled Alerts & Mass Notification System for Schools
You need the ability to keep your community informed at all hours, and this is where scheduled alerts and mass notifications come into play. A last-minute reminder about an upcoming school event or an important alert about a school closing — you can keep your entire community updated at all hours, across multiple devices, in their preferred language, with just a few clicks!
With the best communication tools for schools and a notification solution like Messages XR, you can let users customize their alerts and ensure they receive notifications on their preferred devices in just about any language they need, whether it's through text messaging, phone calls, email, or website and mobile app notifications.
Being a 24/7/362 district isn't about round-the-clock manual updates. It’s about harnessing the power of automation, strategic integrations, and smart content strategies like COPE to appear to be open at all hours. With these tools at your district’s disposal, your digital presence can match the life and engagement of a hungry community.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Connor has spent the last decade within the field of marketing and communications, working with independent schools and colleges throughout New England. As Finalsite’s Senior Content Marketing Manager, Connor plans and executes marketing strategies and digital content across the web. A former photojournalist, he has a passion for digital media, storytelling, coffee, and creating content that connects.