In this blog, I want to give some quick tips to content managers, volunteers, and other leaders working with social media-based networks to scale digital content. Knowing how to access, download, watch and disseminate content is not enough to succeed in this exercise. One has to go the extra mile and “entrench” content to reduce dependence on continuous online and physical training sessions unless there are new members, releases, and updates that users need to be informed about.
At SAWBO, we envision a future where users access the video library download, and share videos easily. We are working round the clock to make the process as simple as possible while saving on time, storage and other resources. Meanwhile, there are specific steps group leaders, extension service providers, and trainers can employ at the initial stages of content dissemination with new members to make SAWBO a household name. These include;
- Online training sessions
When setting up new groups and networks, leaders must organize frequent online training sessions and teach new how to navigate the video library and access all SAWBO video animations. The use of webinars for leaders with internet connectivity and WhatsApp notes for members who might fail to attend online sessions are encouraged.
One advantage WhatsApp notes have over webinars is that members can access them offline for reference, and even use them for training and tips for sharing to other group members. The notes keep circulating in groups over a period of time and act as refresher tips.
- Organize physical training sessions
Physical training sessions are largely used to train members who do not have WhatsApp-ready phones in rural communities where the sharing of animations via Bluetooth and watching on television sets can be demonstrated. In rural settings, trainers should use television sets which are locally available to demonstrate the ease by which animations can be watched, as opposed to overhead projectors which might seem strange to participants.
- Visit farms and workplaces and share more animations
After training your group and network members, organize visits to farmers, traders, and stores. Accompany health workers as they do household visits and witness the use of the animation video knowledge. Visits are a powerful way to connect the trainer/extension service provider with the trainee and create a bond and a sense of belonging to the SAWBO family.
From left to right above shows farmer Tumaini Kadzo’s groundnuts, and indigenous vegetables on her farm in Ganja la Simba, Kwale county. She planted the sweet potatoes and groundnuts after watching animation videos during a visit by our coast- based volunteers. Photo credit: Kataru Concepts
With fewer government extension officers in our communities, visiting farmers bridge the gap and compliments government efforts to educate communities on common practices.
For example, farmers feel valued when they watch videos and put the content into practice on their farms with a visiting extension provider or trainer. Any practice learned during such sessions is never forgotten and earns a permanent spot on the farm!
Above left to right shows farmer Mdzomba setting banana weevil traps on his farm after watching the animation video on Preparing Banana and Plantain Suckers for Planting to Reduce Pests and Increase Yield and Stem Trapping to Control Weevils during a farm visit. Photo Credit: Kataru Concepts.
Leaders who are starting to form social media-based groups and networks, and those with established teams need to always consider employing these three steps to give their networks the vibrancy and life needed to cause excitement in SAWBO content dissemination.