Blogs – Day 5 – Next Steps…

by Kevin Jones on November 13, 2009

Week 1: Blogs: Day 5

Now that you have your blog and you have written a post or two, what is next?

Well, to get the full benefit, you might want someone to read your posts.  Like they say about love: to be loved, love others.

  • Probably most importantly, write something useful or interesting to your targeted readers.  Rambling won’t work.  Give something of value.  Let them expect that when they come to your blog, they will get a gem.
  • Make it a habit.  Post regularly.  More people will come to your blog if they can count on something to read.
  • Find those blogs that are similar to yours and comment on their posts.  Just like in real life, those who add shallow conversation are easily ignored.  Contribute a link to more information or an experience that adds to the post.
  • Springboard off someone’s post.  Take what they have said, link back to them as a reference, and again add more information or another perspective.
  • Put yourself in the overall conversation.  Many times there are there are blog posts from one author that spur many others.  Recognize those times and jump in.
  • Put your blog address on your email signatures.
  • Use your blog as a reference.  For example, in an email you might say, “I talk about this in my blog: http://myblog.wordpress.com.”
  • When you create a post, let it be heard on Twitter (which we will talk about in a few weeks).
  • Getting more technical, you can optimize your site for better rankings in search engines – Search Engine Optimization (SEO).

Good writing does not come naturally to everyone and it might take time.  That is OK – no need to rush it.

There are a number of resources that have more information on this subject.

Remember, the purpose is not to be read or to become popular.  It is to learn and to share.

Just like any other tool, blogging is not a waste of time if done correctly.  Sometimes we need to test it out and do it incorrectly a few times before we really ‘get it.’  That is how we learn.  Dive in and make mistakes! This is not a sign of weakness – rather it is a sign that you are trying to learn.  As you go through this journey of blogging, others will be patient and help you.

Make this fun! You can take an ordinary subject, make it fun and it will change how we look at it and how we use it.

At the end of the seven weeks, I am going to ask everyone to come back to their blog and post some of what they have learned.  Those at NASA MSFC who do this will be entered into a drawing for a lunch with Center director Robert Lightfoot.  But remember that the reason we are doing this is not for a prize – it is to learn, to become familiar and comfortable with these new ways of communicating and collaborating.  Make that your major goal.

Next week: RSS. This will open a whole new world to you.

Enjoy!

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