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    • Wouldn’t it be great if that lead to their responding to Cake conversations and even creating their first conversation?

      Honestly, I think this will be a huge driver for Cake adoption. Someone looking for a moderated platform for a Q&A can use this one without being an active conversationalist here, and share the link out to their own audience platforms, which will in turn create new users here.

      Once that functionality is live, I plan on hosting entrepreneur Q&A's here with some of my friends in the technology space.

    • 1. What was good about the workshop?

      Apparently, I assumed some things differently than others did. “Workshop” means something different than “Panel” to me. A workshop, in my mind, is a gathering of people with a similar interest who are ready to share their perspective and actively learn from one another. It is likely they already have some experience with the topic, but they are still open to forming ideas and developing new insights. There is an interesting new synergy that emerges when everyone provides input and they learn from one another.

      A panel, on the other hand, is a gathering of just three or so experts who *present* their experience/opinions to an audience to mull over. (When there is just one expert, the form tends to morph into an “Interview” or a “Presentation”). Maybe there is a Q&A period at the end of the Panel/Presentation when all manner of random questions and statements are posed by audience members and the panelists or presenter respond from the position of expert.

      I love the idea of Cake Workshops where many people with similar interests are invited to come together and learn from each other—and “outsiders” can see it all, but don’t disrupt the synergy with comments/questions. It keeps the topic very clean while the participants can explore various elements that are of interest to *them.* It may be frustrating to those who can only watch—but my response to that is, “Hey, isn’t it cool you get to see the process the workshop attendees went through sharing their experience and perspectives?”

      2. What could have been better?

      I found the invitation-to-participate process to be a little unclear. (Hence my late entry into the discussion-heh.)

      3. What CAN we do to make the next workshop even more amazing?

      Clarify the format a little better?


      Two thumbs up for this experience. I learned a lot, and hopefully contributed something to the conversation. Thank you @apm for being someone who stretches the boundaries while building bridges.

    • Good Afternoon, and thanks for inviting me to join this panel!

      A bit about me, I run a blog and also a medium sized Facebook page. I am an autistic adult and share my experiences as someone who is on the autism spectrum in order to help other autistic people, families, and other autism allies. I have had the privilege to be on a couple of cake panels here as well hosted by @apm including how autism presents differently in women. I have also written several posts that have been featured in The Mighty, Mental Health Talk, and others.

      I have found across platforms that engagement is very important in promoting both my message online and speaking engagements I do within the community offline. I do my best to always make my followers or anyone reading feel like they are part of a community. I promote positivity but also honesty in my posts so that they are authentic. When people see you are authentic they will engage with you. Be yourself online, don't attempt to be what you think will trigger an algorithm or more views, if you are yourself then those things will eventually come. Write about things you are passionate about.

      Positivity also helps with engagement, because you want genuine people to engage with you. Build and reach out to the type of people you want as a part of your community. Think about who it is you are trying to reach and then always keep them in mind as a real person whenever you are creating content. Think about who they are, what their life may be like, and what they would find most helpful. Also do your best to respond to comments, even if it just a "like" to let people know that you are reading. While it does not have to be every single comment, going through several will show people who are following that you care about their story and experiences too. This makes it more of an interaction, and you are then more of a real person to them that they want to engage with.

      Overall, be yourself. You will eventually attract engagement. It is better to grow more slowly and find a genuine, authentic audience than try to use marketing or social media tactics to grow engagement quickly. You will end up with the same numbers and those people will stay because there will be a real connection and they will want to interact with you.

    • We agree and think the Q&A feature for panels is the most important thing we're doing. The majority of the team is devoted to it.

      Right now if you're not on the panel you see a lock icon and a grayed-out sentence at the end of the conversation that says "Only conversation panelists may post." Bummer. The plan is to replace that with a way to let anyone ask a question of the panel.

      This would make panels a cousin to Reddit's popular AMAs (Ask Me Anything). The thing about AMAs that are so exciting is they provide a chance for anyone to ask a question of Bill Gates and for the community to upvote the best ones.

      The downside to AMAs is when the community scales, it can get crazy. I interviewed an r/askscience moderator who said she had her Astronomy professor at MIT to do an AMA and she was mortified at some of the questions she got asked.

      Hopefully we bring something to the Internet it has never seen: a way for Taylor Swift to answer questions from her fans without any of us having to get overwhelmed by zillions of awful questions because the questions go to the panel and then are made public as the panel answers them.

      In one way, it's less exciting, but in another it's more sane — especially as we scale.

      The other day Kara Swisher tried to Interview Jack Dorsey on Twitter at his request and she wrote an article afterwards with this title: "How hard is it to have a conversation on Twitter? So hard not even the CEO can do it."

      Hopefully we solve this problem for her. It's one of my life's dreams to see this succeed, as it has in real-life panels.

      While I was typing this I got an email from Richard Saul Wurman, the founder of TED, to ask how it's coming. I can't tell you how thrilling it would be to create something he would use. I adore him. He ended his 60 Minutes interview with this: "The greatest thing in life is a conversation between people."

    • Okay, final wrap up!  Let’s dive in with the


      Every panelist here creates conversations that are outstanding enough to be recognized on the FEATURED timeline.  When you see their quirky avatar on the left hand side of a timeline, consider it a seal of quality and click on their conversation even if it’s not your usual fare.  You’ll be pleasantly surprised at how much you’ll enjoy them—the quality is THAT high.

      Ultimately, if you’ve read this far, you’re someone who aspires to be that consistently excellent.  To be that someone who people are willing to take a chance on with your latest conversation—because you’ve never let them down with your prior ones.

      The tips shared today in this workshop will get you several steps closer to that goal, so pay close attention to the key points summarized here AND re-read the original posts for further guidance.


      If you removed all the topics, would I still be able to tell what your conversation is about from just the title?

      A title posed as a question will often work, so definitely consider that as a possibility.  But clarity of purpose for your conversation should be the key consideration.


      Before you decide on the topics to add, type in the topic name or a keyword into the Cake search bar.  If there’s only a handful of followers for a topic that you think is appropriate, add it AND find one or two more related topics that are more widely followed.  AND FOLLOW THOSE TOPICS!!!

      Conversation Ideas

      I would suggest reading @JazliAziz ‘s Anybody can write for a front row seat into the writing mind of a multiple FEATURED conversation contributor.

      All of our panelists seemed to share the sentiment that passion for the conversation is paramount.  If your interest is lukewarm it will come across in your posts.

      passion + subject matter expertise is the Golden Ticket to high engagement.  


      Both @ChrisJenkins and @Chris stress the benefits of more deliberate formatting: shorter blocks of text make scrolling easier for smartphone readers.  But don’t be afraid to write 7 or 8 sentence paragraphs if proper flow demands it: just make sure to give your readers an occasional break with shorter paragraphs.

      Or even a one sentence paragraph.


      @JazliAziz argues that a photo or lead image is incredibly important to stand out from the crowd.  I argue that a clearly written title is all you need to obtain meaningful engagement. ⬇️

      Title of this workshop challenged

      @Felicity challenged the very premise of the workshop: How to get more Responses to your Conversations on Cake.  We shouldn’t be keeping score on the number of responses.

      @Denise made the great point that as visual artists, writers and creators, we want to know that our work had a positive impact on readers.  And if someone chooses to give up their time to join in conversation with us, that’s meaningful validation.

      Photo Walk conversations

      Both @Glenn_Smith and @Denise shared a ton of tips for creating engaging photo conversations that get other users to share their own related work.  @Denise suggested an initial collection of 5 to 10 images so as to not overload your readers.

      And so much more

      I try to write these highlights from memory, which is imperfect, and there are additional valuable bits of wisdom from @lidja , @Ravi , @Vilen , @edgeoftheplayground and others that I’ve overlooked.

      Thank you

      Pulling off a panel like this is a huge undertaking that spanned across time zones and countries, including Malaysia, Australia and the United States.  Our panelists put so much time and effort into creating something amazing.

      Thank you all for this.