I’ve written in the past about how much I love Posterous. I still love it, but had an interesting learning experience, that I’d like to share.
I ran a 10K on 7 February. I wanted to write up a race report for a Posterous site that I started for some friends with whom I’m training for a race in April. I usually just post via email but I wanted to include some links to maps etc. and wanted to see how they looked so I posted via the web interface. I didn’t like what I’d done so I edited and posted again. And again. And again. And again.
Each post went out to the world and landed in my twitter stream, my FaceBook page and on another blog that I’ve connected to Posterous. Posterous didn’t send the same link, or even overwrite the old post, but rather created a separate entry for each post, on the site, and the various other channels I’ve attached to the Posterous account. So, the lesson I’ve learned, if posting to Posterous, via the web interface, is to turn off your announcements (this would have been complicated because this is a team blog and lots of folks get it via email… each time I post, sorry team! Not reporting it to the world would have been nice, and once I had one that I liked I could have made one more small tweak, turned on share everywhere, and shared that, and I also could have deleted the posts I didn’t want.
This is an OK solve, I think, for a blog amongst friends. But it got me thinking how I’d approach it for a client, to help them avoid such a fiasco. My thought on this is to create two versions of a Postersous site under the account (which is what I have, my personal Posterous and my team Posterous) but make the second one private, and password protected, and invite no one to it, and add no subscribers, unless it’s a couple of test emails to see how things look as they go out (make sure only the editor’s eyes see the tests). Post things to the test site, tweak it and adapt it and when it’s ready for prime-time, copy the content and post it to your main site and share it with the world. I believe that this is good solve for email as well, if you are trying something that you’re not sure how it will come out you can test it on this test setup, then resend the email to the public site.
One of the nice things about Posterous is the immediacy of the posting, and typically I do only do email posts, but there are, and will be times, like February, 7, when I want to use Posterous a bit more robustly. I’d recommend learning from my minor gaffe and set yourself up with a test site where you can experiment in private. A nice possible future feature (are you listening Posterous folks?) would be a preview feature to avoid this sort of thing, but in the absence of that feature users will have to experiment.