Guest Blogging Opportunities

Updated: 28/07/17

We would like to hear from all those who would like an opportunity to guest blog for us.

Benefits of Guest Blogging?

  • It will help direct visitors to your own sites and profiles. If you’re a business person and write well, it may enlighten old customers about other services you provide and help you discover new ones.
  • It will hone your content and SEO-writing skills!

Requirements

  1. Pitch us first, to suggest your idea, before starting to write.
  2. You must be:
    • an experienced writer (including your own blog, novel or other writing outlet)
    • a business owner or someone who plays a significant role in the business you work in (you do not need to be in the same industry as us)
  3. There is no need to be a blogger already, as long as you have something to say.
  4. The topic is up to you, as long as it can be easily related to business. (Update 2017: We tend to blog on one key topic per month. Check Twitter for details.)
  5. You will be allocated a month to write for, unless you have any specific date in mind, perhaps to coincide with something you are trying to promote.
  6. Blogs must be submitted well in advance of the month in which they are to appear, to allow time for editing and uploading.

Other Stuff

  • We will edit your blog post.
  • We will not publish it elsewhere, without asking your permission, though it will appear on all the usual social networks.
  • We will attribute it to you via links to your website(s) or social profile(s).
  • We may decide not to publish it at all. There could be 101 operational reason for that.
  • There is currently no payment for guest bloggers.

OK, get to work. Email all questions to hello@sensei.ie.

Bungle and Zippy Were Right

This week, a friendly colleague sent me links to what he thought might be two new competitors for us. I admit it’s been some time since I did any market research on what the competitors are doing by way of training. So, in a few minutes of waiting for something else to happen online, I thought I’d quickly check them out and put them in the to-do list for perusing later.

Ditch the Dullness

I read the first page and was immediately appalled by the dull language used, the missing commas and the stock photography. It looked like the type of template style site that inhabitants of The Office office might appreciate. “Come on, competitors!” I thought. “Can’t we do better than black and white typical, corporate photography – showing a typical corporate training shot – from a typical, corporate (oooo, that word makes me shiver!) CD purchased online?” And, then, “Isn’t there something more gripping to write about than ‘business strategy’ or ‘people development paradigms’!?” Please.

Recently I’ve been dipping my toes into website design. (And, all the purists may laugh uproariously. :P) Continue reading “Bungle and Zippy Were Right”

Contract Technical Writers versus Employed Technical Writers

You’ve posted an advertisement for a full-time technical writer. The financial advantages seem to make sense. Why hire a contract technical writer at hundreds of pound per day when you can employ a technical writer for one fifth that amount, and get the same amount done?

This is the Crux

An employed technical writer, unless highly skilled and experienced in the field of technical writing, will simply not produce as much for you, at as high a standard, as a contracted technical writer, who had to become adept at learning new stuff quickly, improvising to make the best use of their time when clients delay getting information for them. Experience in technical writing beats financial benefits hands down.

An experienced technical writer will:

  • Have years of experience with clients
  • Have qualifications to illustrate writing skills, in English, languages or (the annoyingly elusive) technical writing courses
  • Be busy and therefore not able to start on Monday (this is a good sign, and one indicator that they’re worth waiting for)
  • Have shining testimonials to vouch for previous clients’ contentment with their work
  • Talk to you about:
    • audience
    • output
    • information architecture
    • single-sourcing
    • benefits
    • time required with developers, PMs and SMEs,
    • how you can contribute to making their output meet your needs
    • be concerned about reducing support and sales guys’ stress over calls about how the product works
    • be aware of current trends

And, remember, Cheap Writers Can be Expensive.

Be Kind

My brother and sister-in-law admonish their kids with be kind . They are the most gentle and loving children I know. I may be biased since I ‘m auntie Dawn . I recently bought them Be Kind snap bracelets, which they love.

It struck me at tonight ‘s Belfast Bloggers Meetup that these words would form an easy-to-follow strategy for any new blogger, and one that didn’t get an outing at this evening’s seminar. It’s another angle… (Thankfully, Toby Osbourn has blogged the event, so I don ‘t have to!)

Be Kind in Your Blogs

  1. Write complimentary reviews of products, places, people and ideas stuff you actually like. Share them with the universe. (This might mean turning down free stuff that promoters will send you. Unless you ‘re already a fan. Your readers will soon sniff out the fake reviews anyway.)
  2. Write stuff that shows people how to do things. People love this. They especially love lists (like it or loathe it). Maybe think about adding a few lists into your blog schedule now and then. See how it goes.

Be Kind in Your Comments

  1. Comment on others ‘ blog posts. The uncanny effect will be more eyeballs on your blogs. It ain ‘t rocket science.
  2. Comment positively. Comment enthusiastically. Ask the blogger a question. (You ‘ve no idea the positive vibes this sends out.) Answer a question they asked but left unanswered. Get involved in the discussion. Again, this attracts the blogger and other contributions to your blog.
  3. Might I suggest you have a definite strategy for this? Make a list of bloggers or organisations. Target them specifically. It works. It takes time. Patience. Bookmark the blogs and make a point of commenting at least once a week.

Be Kind in Your Shares

  1. Share others ‘ blog posts. New bloggers will love this. Help them out.
  2. Include hashtags (or other key words or labels) on the channels that use them. Bloggers will love you for noticing their key themes and helping their SEO a little.

Just a thought. Being kind goes a long way toward making new contacts, developing existing friendships and drawing people back to your blog. Once they ‘re there, you can use clever ways to get them to read further (further reading, similar posts, links to other parts of your site, embedded media).

Let us know how you get on.

How do you interpret Be Kind?

Image credit: marisavasquez

Vote Jedi!

About half a year ago I wrote a blog about why Northern Ireland needs another political party, indeed, another type of political party. We need the First Jedi Political Party. This week, as all our differeing tribes have raised their posters up, and taken others down, I feel compelled to write the blog we need but not the one we deserve.

We need more humour in NI politics. Humour is lightness, humour is a surprising conclusion and the end of a seemingly predictable story. Hence humour leads to lateral thinking and creativity, and to different avenues of thought. If the politics of NI so far is tragic, then maybe a solution can come from the comic. And if you laugh with someone at yourself, can you continue to hate them, can you refuse to empathise with them?

We need more distance in NI politics. Objectivity is too hard to achieve when we are so close to events. Our minds might want to travel in another direction but our hearts remain stubbornly anchored in the past. We need to be taken to a totally other place, for example, to a long time ago in a galaxy far, far way. Only there can we truly gain some perspective of here. We need metapolitics via mythopoeia; or, discussion about political concepts using fictional peoples.

We need more discrimination – more distinguishing and distinction-making – in NI politics. The North of Ireland versus Northern Ireland, aitch or haitch, Derry/Londonderry, all these divisions have one factor in common. They all assume a binary, dulaistic vision of politics in which there is only us or them. They neglect a mindful approach to politics in which one is able to create new categories and become aware of multiple perspectives. Mindfulness is a Jedi technique.

We need to create new tribes, new divisions, new conflicts, new ‘troubles’ to replace the old. But we need to do it in such a way that everyone knows it is frivilous, non-consequencial. We need a new face-lift for NI, oen that not only clears away the old oen but takes it a million light years beyond an anything here.

Setting Out Your eStall on Social Media

Libraries NI is holding an event for entrepreneurs or potential entrepreneurs across Newry, Ballymena, Belfast and Omagh from January to March this year. “Setting Out Your eStall on Social Media is a seminar designed to help you see if you’re suited to entrepreneurship. During this event, Dawn will tell her personal and business story. She will also consider the practicalities of getting started, using online tools to help you research potential buyers, how to brand yourself or your organisation on the web and where to find additional, start-up and growth funding.”

Admission to each event is free and everyone is welcome. Booking is advisable. Contact Newry City Library (79 Hill Street, BT34 1DG) on telephone 028 3026 4683 or email newrycity.library@librariesni.org.uk to book a place at the first event. For details bookings for other locations, go to the Libraries NI website www.librariesni.org.uk.”

Image credit: crabchick.

Profitable Online Marketing Strategy

10 Early Bird tickets have been released for our September event, Create an Online Marketing Strategy. Follow the link for further details and registration information.

Key Points:

  • All attendees will be subscribed to a follow-up Creating a Profitable Online Marketing Strategy email course (value: £150).
  • Two complimentary tickets will be issued to two charities, not for profits or social enterprises who contact us before Wednesday 10th July.

The Big List is Coming!

maze

The Big List is a collection of useful web tools and resources, particularly for those who’re adopting social media tools for business, but feel like they may just have walked into a maze! It will contain short descriptions of each tool and suggestions of how it might be used, to help you negotiate your way through. It has been promised for some time, and is finally almost ready…

Continue reading “The Big List is Coming!”