I think that Chris Brogan nailed this in his articles. We bloggers have sovereign power or authority over the construct of and content in our blogs. Without us there is no blog content to optimized and indexed; to promote; to attract readers; to provide a base for interactive discussion; and to form a foundation for blog centered relationship building.
Content is what readers come to our blogs to read and discuss. In order to create an effective and successful blog the blogger must become a prolific writer of quality content that calls readers to action. Chris writes in the context of being an independent blogger and provides tips on “cranking out content” more consistently.
It’s easy to get distracted as a blogger – but one thing you can’t ignore is creating content for your blog. — Darren Rowse — Blogging: Focus on Content Creation
Conversation Agent, Valeria Maltoni reminds us: We live in the age of information overload and there is going to be an increased emphasis – and value – placed upon great content. Great content cuts through the clutter, helps you think through your challenges and provides you with insights as to what you need to do next.
- Provide the information people want
- Speak with authority to build credibility
- Get to the point
- Present yourself with confidence
I look for common sense, researched information and true feelings expressed. — What do you look for in a blog?
- an attention grabbing title that accurately reflects the content
- original and unique
- is free of typos, spelling mistakes, grammatical errors
- post length preferences vary from reader to reader – some prefer brevity and simplicity- content presented in bullet points – structured in short paragraphs with space between them, others prefer longer more comprehensive posts
- has substance
- is updated regularly
- informs or teaches me something
- entertains me
- contains humor (clean)
- inspires me
- challenges me
- contains an invitation to participate in discussion and helps readers add to the content of the post, so everyone benefits
- has a graphic or photo to add some visual interest
Interaction with readers
Readers have real lives to live. Time of the essence and they want to make the best possible use of it. After reading content and leaving a comment they expect a human response that leads to connection with other people — connection to the person, who produced the content and to others discussing it.
The character of the blogger is the most important thing to me. I like to feel there’s a real person behind the words reaching out to me, to move and touch me with their own unique experience and vision of life. — What do you look for in a blog?
- is an authentic person who is both passionate and knowledgeable about their topic without being condescending
- is original with a feisty spirit of can do
- provides a profile and a statement of purpose for the blog
- states how frequently new content is usually published
- provides links to sites with high quality resources in posts and in blogroll
- provides contact information
- responds to readers’ comments
Bloggers have real lives to live. Time of the essence and they want to make the best possible use of it. An organized approach is what it takes but content creation and relationship building take time. And it appears that “tweets” and “likes” may not exactly be replacing backlinks but … Creating a social media time strategy to insure the time you spend on social networking is effectively spent grows more challenging every day.
This brings me to effective time management. Scheduling enough time for creating original content, promoting it through social media and social networks, answering comments, locating similar blogs, reading and leaving comments on other blogs, link building and relationship building — OMG! it’s mission impossible.
Where to you draw the lines? I’m still figuring that out myself.
What about the rest of you? How do you allocate your blogging time?