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Wednesday, August 17, 2011

A Dozen Golden Nuggets from the Blog Lab Event

The WebManager's Roundtable and Dick Davies put on a powerful practical workshop for active organizational bloggers – covering a broad range of attendee inspired topics, such as process – better/easier blogging; managing – avoiding blogger burnout or lighting the flame; volume – achieving greater distribution & getting more readers; comments – being a comment shill & reader contributions; and writing – finding the voice the readers want & building relationships.

From the wealth of material at the front of the room and tips and techniques shared by bloggers, here's some of the best - a dozen golden nuggets:

  • Always be thinking about your next blog and potential topics as you attend meetings, events, have conversations, read others – what can I add of value
  • The Rule of One – one thought per sentence; one subject per paragraph; one topic per blog post
  • On Editing: overworking a blog is like overworking a piece of metal – eventually it weakens & breaks
  • About comments: do you invite them; conduct reader surveys; use the recent or most commented widgets; comment on other blogs; give a timely reply to all comments received or acknowledge them; and reuse the comments (with attribution) in other places
  • Every post must have a purpose – as the test: Why would you want to read this post?
  • A post offers another view; advocates a position; shares thoughts & ideas; educates; illustrates; and gives desirable alternatives – be clear in your mind and consistent within the post what you are seeking achieve
  • Successful bloggers set a goal and run to meet that goal – e.g., 5 paragraphs, 10 lines, two posts per week
  • Web 1.0 was push oriented – put it out there; Web 2.0 was two-way oriented – asynchronous dialogue; Web 3.0 is just now coming in with computers using comments, reader feedback, news, and other data sources to create content on the internet
  • Timeliness is important when blogging; credibility is critically important as a blogger
  • Analytics are useful to a point – don't obsess on them
  • What a quick gauge of the influence of a post – Google the title to see who is reposting it and commenting on other sites
  • A snappy title can draw in readers – scan Buzz for current hot phrases for ideas for your headlines

And #13 for a baker's dozen: just as you may have different private and public personalities, as a blogger you have an electronic (on-line) persona – the you that appears to your readers through your blog and posts; establish and refine your voice as a blogger and work to strike a clear picture of who you are and remain consistent to that image – don't write like a professor one day and a comedian the next. This is who the readers are developing a relationship with and who they will follow in Google Reader.

Comments keep the learning going – please share your nuggets to help us all learn to blog better.

4 comments:

Dick Davies said...

Yeah, I'm still pondering that as an organization, product or service can have a brand, a blogger has an online persona, created by what the readers think of her.

It's like a second chance!

Carol Covin said...

And, readers like numbered lists :)

Jack Gates said...

Dick:

Good points - both brand 'loyalty' and blogger 'persona' are determined in the reader's mind.

Each is created.

Think about the flip side - the persona of Larry Hagman - JR on the show "Dallas" - a head of the pack jerk - but on the show "I Dream of Jeanie" he was a sweetheart, and apparently in real life was.

Jack Gates said...

Carol:

Excellent comment. Readers rule!