The Cover Story is a new feature for Spark designed to feature and highlight important initiatives and be visually engaging. It is a large photo with text that can be customized and can be linked to any page specified by the Program Manager. It is located at the top of the Spark dashboard.
Setting up a Cover Story
The Cover Story can be created by any person assigned the Dashboard Manager role in Spark. See more information here on How to Assign Roles.
People with the Dashboard Manager role are able to create and manage the Cover Story. The links for doing this can be found in the Manage side of Spark beneath the Feature menu.
Step 1: Create and Customize
From the drop down, select Create Cover Stories and this will bring you to a dynamic from to complete. As you begin to complete the form, the preview section at the very top of this form will begin to change with the information you are inputting.
Select an Image
By default, the Cover Story populates with your site’s brand or theme color as the background. If you’d like to add an image, you can upload one here as well. Or you can use one found in our Image Library here.
The image requirements for Cover Story are less than 15MB in size, more than 1920 x 1080 pixels, and in JPEG format. It is a rather large image and you’d want that here to accommodate for displaying across a variety of devices and screen sizes and if the image isn’t large enough with a high resolution then it could be come pixelated or blurry on larger screens.
Images are darkened automatically to create contrast between the text and background to improve readability.
Once an image is loaded, you are able to adjust the position in the preview area at the top of the form.
Pro-Tip: You can wait to do the repositioning once you’ve completed the form, to see how the text that you’d like lays over the image you’ve uploaded.
Add your Call to Action. Here you can add a Title Text and an optional Subtitle. If you’d like to publish an image only, select the checkbox ‘I do not want to add any text’, and it will remove this mandatory Title Text box.
The ‘I do not want to add any text’ checkbox, will only be selectable if an image is added. If you choose to use your theme colours only, adding a Text Title is mandatory.
Select a Button
We’ve prepopulated three text options for your call-to-action (CTA). You can select one of the three, and you will add any URL you’d like to CTA to take your users to. The full url (including ‘ https:// ‘ ) must be included!
We highly encourage you to keep your people within the site. Use the cover story to engage people within Spark with direct CTAs to any Giving, Volunteering or News Item you’d are looking to highlight.
Step 2: Feature
On page two of the Cover Story creation form, you can do your scheduling and targeting.
Start Time and Dates
Select your start times and dates. The Start date and time will default to the day you begin the form and the time zone in your personal account settings, so keep this in mind when you get down to Targeting below. The time selection is also set to a 24 hour clock, so you won’t have to worry about setting AM/PM times.
You can also choose to set a Cover Story to run indefinitely by checking the box “Keep this Cover Story featured until I decide to set an End Date/Time”.
Here is where you select who sees your cover story. By default, you will see an ‘all’ group in the drop down. If selected, everyone across your sites will see this cover story. The extra selections will be mapped according to columns in your demographic file and will be set up for your during your implementation or through a request to the Client Technical Support team.
Pro-Tip: Adding multiple groups will INCREASE the number of users who are eligible to see the Cover Story. In other words, the groups are combined using OR logic.
For example; There is a company which has created two groups —one for User Country (Canada) and one for Preferred Language (French). They create a Cover Story and add these both to the targeting section. The cover story will appear for ALL Canadian users AND All Francophone users. Users in European France, with their preferred language set to French, and any English speaking user, with their country set to Canada would see it too!
Step 3: Review
The review page summarizes all of the changes or updates you will be making. If everything looks alright, go ahead and publish your cover story! Note, there is often a 10-30 second delay after hitting “Submit” as the Cover Story is being created.
More cover story resources:
For additional support, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.