I’ve been with e27 for a total of  four years now, with a couple-of-years break in-between. Throughout that time, I have seen the company evolve. More importantly, I have also seen the startup ecosystem that we live and breathe evolve.

When I first started out, it was mostly about editorial work and events — at least from my perspective as a senior writer. Our days were filled with the usual news grind — hard news, editorials, features, and interviews as the situation required.

My most recent assignment has proven to be the most interesting and challenging, however, and that is because it now involves community.

As the Manager of the Contributor Programme, my job is to help other people to get published on the e27 platform — or at least the editorial side of things (as there are also jobsevents, and company profiles).

I have thus worked with Founders, investors, marketers, entrepreneurs, freelancers and students — basically people from the full spectrum. I am honoured to have worked with successful entrepreneurs, and I am glad to have helped those just starting out in making their mark on the world.

I mostly work behind the scenes, but it is perhaps more satisfying than having my byline posted across the web and social media. It turns out that curating other people’s work, and even helping market it through various channels, does come with big responsibilities.

By the way, you can check out our community archive here. You can also submit your stories here.

Internally we have recently been focussing on the “whys” of our work — the rationale, the raison d’être — which enables us to go beyond the minutae and focus on the bigger picture. In terms of user-generated content, I can see four reasons why we want to help members of the community get their content published:

1. Teamwork makes the dream work

If you check out the e27 “about us” page, you will see that this tenet is included among our core values and it is not just a cool rhyme. It is actually the title of a John C. Maxwell book on — you guessed it — the importance of teamwork. More importantly, it is also a book about leadership, cooperation and the good stuff that happens when people work together.

On Amazon, there is an interesting review of the book, which summarises the content and also highlights on the importance of giving the team the “reason, resources, and chance to succeed.”

e27 is basically that — we provide a platform in which we hope community members use to improve the likelihood of their success. Jobs can help you find the right people, events can help you get connected, and the contributor programme will help your story find some visibility.

We’re all in this together, after all.

I’ve always thought that as a startup, e27‘s product is the ecosystem. We therefore want to see the ecosystem succeed and flourish through the tools that we build.

Also read: 27 most read articles by community contributors in 2017

2. Share your expertise

By publishing on e27, you can also help other members of the community by sharing advice, tips, resources, and commentaries. In our community archive, you can read sage words of advice from established founders, including how to build a better product, how to establish your brand, and even how to valuate employee stock options, among other resources.

Angel investors, VCs, and other members of the investment community also share tips and resources for businesses looking for funding.

You can also read up on the latest trends — blockchain tech and AI are some of the prevailing topics in the recent weeks. We actually have a focus on “academy” articles, too.

Of course, this goes both ways. When you share your advice and expertise, you also get to establish yourself as a thought leader, especially if your advice comes from experience — and yes, both failure and success count as experience points. If you’ve been there, and if you’ve done that, then why not share your journey with the community? You might end up becoming an inspiration that fuels other people’s aspirations.

3. We need your contributions

We can only go so far with an in-house staff of editors and writers. With the amount of daily news that we cover, our plates are often full. Besides, we don’t always have the experience or expertise necessary to best discuss all topics. That’s where you come in.

You may notice that a growing proportion of our daily published articles comes from the community, and this is for good reason. It is actually part of our company’s OKRs to increase community involvement through user-generated-content.

So when you share articles, videos, infographics, or other content of substance and relevance, you’re actually doing us a favour!

4. We know you want it, too

Getting content published on e27 and other similar websites has value for any startup. But it has to be done right.

For one, we actually do accept content partnerships — and that responsibility falls under our revenue team. But for our contributor programme, we are essentially offering a free platform for publishing your content. It would be unfair if there are brands, marketers, or businesses that take advantage of the free platform for their own commercial gain, wouldn’t it?

Also read: 3 dead simple rules to get better with content marketing

I know that guest posting can be big business, especially for those involved in inbound marketing. We get our fair share of contributions that obviously try to sneak in a commercial link or two. And frankly, this is quite concerning.

What we can help you with is get your story and messaging out, and along with this your branding. But you have to give us content that falls under our criteria of acceptable content: valuable and relevant to the community.

We are curating content for a discerning audience, after all.

Conclusion

Again, our work here is to help the community by providing the tools, resources, and access, that will help entrepreneurs on their way to success.

Our contributor programme is part of the bigger picture, and we hope you can take advantage of it by sharing helpful and useful resources, advice, and stories.

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Featured Image Copyright: peshkov / 123RF Stock Photo

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