It’s been awhile since we’ve shared what is going on with the community here on Autisable, and what to expect next for the site.
First, our community is GROWING AGAIN!
When we relaunched, we didn’t know what to expect. After all, when a website is essentially put on hiatus for a couple of years one would expect it to become non-existent.
This is not the case with Autisable.
We have over 240 members on the site, and more people are joining every week using their other social media login to quickly join the site and be a part of the community. From bloggers to non-profits, and also advertisers who want to help serve the community, they are all on autisable sharing their journey and discussing anything autism related.
If you’re on the site and not seeing your newsfeed being populated, be sure to follow others on the site and get active. Connecting the community is what we are about. We know that Facebook groups help a lot of families and individuals out. However, sometimes having a place to contribute and connect on a broader scale on a platform focused on the topic helps even more.
Since we were offline for two years – we’re still catching up on over 2 years of posts to sort through and highlight on our main page. This may help explain to those who asked why some of the posts we highlight are a bit, well…. old. Newer posts still make their way to the main page, but we’re pushing as fast as we can to catch up. If you’re keeping count, we have a backlog of nearly 350 posts to sort through and highlight. If you are waiting to see if your submitted post makes it to the main page, our new platform helps to notify the member via email that the post has been made live on the site. This is a new feature to us that helps us keep connected to our contributing members.
We still reach thousands of people each month, both professionals and families. Connecting and uniting the different facets of the Autism community.
With the relaunch, we have a different and much-improved look and feel of the site than ever before. You can now interact on the site in twitter/FB newsfeed style of interaction. Sharing daily thoughts and ideas. And of course, you can submit posts to the main page, where our team takes a look. Our goal is basic grammar and that the posts are respectful to the community. We all can disagree, but we want to make sure it is with respect. We aren’t big on censoring people’s opinions or ideas, after 8+ years we recognized early on that stifling people’s freedom of expression does more harm than good. We do, however, promote and encourage respectful discussion. If things get out of hand we do step in if needed. Our track record on this has been good thus far.
With all that we’ve been able to accomplish this past year, there’s still more to do.
Soon we will be moving to a new server, which will enhance our bandwidth, site speed, and security.
We now have 3 advertisers and want to make sure we are serving their needs appropriately. Their feedback in how we can serve them better is actually pushing out some new features that will benefit the user experience on Autisable.
Thanks to Legal Shield Team Parent for the idea on auto-bill pay. This is a request by Michelle to have a page where our advertisers can just submit their form of payment and be set each month without worry. To do this right, we have to upgrade some features on the site, like obtaining an SSL certificate for the site. Having an SSL for a site both benefits site security, but also improves SEO for a site.
Thanks also to DayCape for their feedback. Anton has great to work with and has done a lot for the autism community through his app. We’ve taken several notes on how he’s doing things and applying them to our efforts on Autisable.
Our most recent advertiser is Dr. John Carosso, who is from Pittsburgh, PA. Thanks to him, not only are we getting a professional insight on helping people diagnosed with Autism, we are also able to push our promotional efforts to digital advertising.
Because of our advertisers, we’ve been able to push out several features on the site, like “who to follow” and “real-time notifications”, amongst others…
As you can see, many of our advertisers don’t just pay for an ad on Autisable, they are actively a part of the site – wanting to help the Autism community AND improve site functionality.
We also have ONE ad server company now a part of Autisable, and we work very closely with them on ads being displayed on the site. This company is called AdGroups, and the person who helps run the ads being displayed on Autisable is also an Autism Dad himself. We will share more about him and his company as we move forward.
In preparation for more advertisers being a part of Autisable, we have to adjust how we display their ads – and how we help promote their efforts. We will be rotating ads through each page, rather than have static ad space on the site. This will reduce some of the clutter on the site, which will improve the look/feel of the site and allow us to serve more advertisers.
Because we work closely with our advertisers, it allows us to plan ahead on features to be added to the site. So, here’s a snippet on what to expect this year:
User Tags – so people who want to be identified as having Autism, or being a parent or professional can be easily seen.
Verified Users – to ensure people and organizations are the official account on Autisable.
MailChimp Integration – so we can have a cohesive means to communicate promotional campaigns and communicate with our members. We aren’t spammy and won’t sell/give away any private information.
Private Messages – so people can connect privately. We’d like to have this feature as non-profits and professionals need to have a means for our members to easily reach them through the site.
For our syndicated bloggers and non-profits, we will be upgrading and tweaking our import process as well.
As you can see, we are just getting started, and there’s still a lot more work to do.
But, we’d LOVE to have you on the site and providing feedback – and more importantly, sharing your journey!
The world isn’t going to know what life with autism is really like until it is shared in unity by the community. Our journey with Autism is incredibly diverse and dynamic.
Just like when we meet one person with Autism, that’s it, we met one person.
E Pluribus Unum. Out of many, One. It is the motto of the United States of America.
We carry this motto on Autisable. We are many, we have one voice with a diverse and dynamic message to share with the world.
Now, what will we say with that voice is up to the community.
Thank you for being a part of Autisable, and for sharing your journey. We look forward to meeting you and sharing your journey. 🙂
The Autisable Team