Silicon Valley Watcher - Former FT journalist Tom Foremski reporting from the intersection of technology and media

Great Blogging Tips...

Posted by Tom Foremski - October 20, 2010

Tuesday evening I was at Murray Newland's first meetup of the San Francisco Blog Club. It seems like a throwback to 2007 having a club around blogging, but in many ways, blogging is making a comeback as people realize that it is an important element in establishing thought leadership.

Blogging offers an archive of work and it can be the center of a publishing strategy that includes Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, etc.

Dana Oshiro, from Netshelter was the speaker and she did a great job under difficult circumstance because the noise level from other bar patrons was quite loud. Dana is very good and she is one of the up and coming writers that you should have on your radar screen.

Here is part of her presentation, you can see the rest of it on her blog: Villagers with Pitchforks.

Tim O'Reilly once said, 'The problem with writers isn't piracy, it's obscurity.' It may be hard to monetize fame, but it is impossible to monetize obscurity."

Rather than worrying about who's stealing our content, we need to make it sharable, readable and ultimately popular enough to be stolen. We need readers .

There's no silver bullet to do this, but the ways most writers can figure out where their existing traffic and engagement comes from is by looking at their Google Analytics and through sites like Collecta to determine if their traffic is coming:


    • - through search (which is generated through relevant trackbacks and links); - and/or

    • through social media and other blogs

The same tennets that determine newsworthiness for traditional writers also work for bloggers. If you can find a way to relate your story to an existing celebrity (with a large audience), connect it to a major and timely event, incorporate a narrative that affects millions, demonstrate popular and conflicting opinions, regionalize your post or bring a unique point of view to light, you're more likely to be relevant to a larger group of readers.

You also shouldn't be cute with your tags and headlines or pepper them with puns and obscure innuendos. Search engines and frankly social media audiences aren't going to understand your inside jokes. Think about what they're searching for try to attract attention with logical keywords and headlines.

If you've already written a post about something you're referencing, don't reinvent the wheel. Link to your old post. This way you can drive additional page views. You can also link to articles by your friends. The point here is to create a blog mafia wherein you work with other likeminded bloggers to validate and highlight each others work.

According to Facebook Evangelist Justin Osofsky readers are 1.5 times more likely to respond to a status update or "like" when they're posed a question. So instead of just cutting and pasting your title and post URL into a status update consider posing a question with your link.

If you're still unsure of which audiences engage with you, check out my post on these six identity tracking tools.

Dana Oshiro (suzyperplexus) on Twitter


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