With The Slugger Awards 2008 happening in Belfast in a few hours, I’ve been wondering… Why this interest in Blogging? Why is it so popular just now?
I had a call last week from an NI Libraries Information Librarian asking whether I’d get involved in the SELB Library events. She’d seen the Welcome to the Blogosphere workshop I’m delivering for QUB’s Open Learning Programme and wondered if I could deliver a few demos on Social Networking and Blogging. I was up for the challenge. We’re starting with two demos and who knows where that might lead? It’s nice to get asked. 🙂
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
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.)
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
Comment on others ‘ blog posts. The uncanny effect will be more eyeballs on your blogs. It ain ‘t rocket science.
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.
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
Share others ‘ blog posts. New bloggers will love this. Help them out.
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).
I blogged a while ago about Twitter. Then I wasn’t so convinced about its potential as a business tool. However, I’ve seen the light and not only about Twitter.
I’ve been using Facebook for a while, as a way of connecting with friends now scattered to the four corners. Recently though, I discovered that you can use Facebook for creating a page for your business (for free). One of my customers is now a fan of Sensei on Facebook, no doubt others will follow. He will receive updates on all our events in a way that suits him. I’ve received (free) technical advice about how to fix computer problems from both former colleagues and tecchie friends via Facebook and Twitter. LinkedIn has now become a useful tool for keeping up to date with former colleagues – even my mum Continue reading “Pay Attention to the Elephant in the Room”
Following a request from a group of business people in Omagh, we are holding a seminar in the South West College on 14 June. This seminar has been run several times before, mainly in the Belfast area. Comments are always positive. Here are some recent responses: Continue reading “Social Media Seminar in Omagh”
Right about now, we’re mid-way through either a bacon roll, a scone, a croissant and jam, or my presentation at our Social Media Business Breakfast… pity you missed it!
Social Media gets a sometimes deservedly bad press, for things such as the ability to “throw sheep” on Facebook, for example, which seems an almighty waste of time, for people who’re busy. I agree. So, I’m planning a new public workshop on social media and business. There will be no throwing sheep, or playing games, such as Mafia Wars. If you want to get into all that, great. But, my guess is that most businesses owners and managers don’t have time for games during work.
I want it to be very practical, in that you learn lots during the day and go home with profiles or blogs or whatever already working. Despite the title of this blog (which may become the name of the workshop), I’ve not yet decided what to call it… because I’m not sure what it will be. Continue reading “Beyond Throwing Sheep”
Last Saturday, I was chatting to John Toal on the Saturday Magazine Show about blogging. He wanted to know why anyone would blog, and why anyone would read it. I suppose I’ve become something of a ‘person to ask about blogging’, since I started blogging a few years ago, and now teach regular workshops on blogging and other social media tool for NI Libraries, QUB and various businesses.
I’m not sure I convinced him, but it was a really interesting experience, following on from my previous one and only radio appearance on the David Dunseath Programme, again, talking – for approximately 38 seconds – about blogging.
This opportunity was a little longer, and I had a lovely time. John took me into the studio, ostensibly to open a few sites, so we’d something to focus our thoughts on, and calmed me a little, as I was rather nervous, to be honest. I was rather calmer after realising someone had set up little stoves right there in the studio and had started cooking Tikka Masala. The smells were mighty! It was just like being at home… Continue reading “Saturday Magazine Programme”
What is a blog? It is a mini, personalised website. The difference between a regular website and a blog is that the owner posts articles – blog posts – regularly to let the public know what he/she is up to. Use it to display your interests, photos of family/friends or even promote your business.
I am are holding a two-day workshop – Welcome to the Blogosphere: Blogging for Beginners – at QUB, Belfast on Saturday 21 & 28 March. To book a place, phone the School of Education (Open Learning) on 028 9097 3539/3323 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
On this practical workshop, you will create a blog (with www.wordpress.com) and learn how to customise it with posts, photos, links and tools. You will also be given access to three months’ free technical support.
This workshop is for total beginners only. I promise – once you begin, you’ll be blogging into the wee small hours!
This term at QUB, we have three new workshops for the working professional: Assertiveness and Workplace Confidence; Managing Customer Experience and Emotional Intelligence Goes to Work. These workshops are hosted by the School of Education, Short Courses Programmes (CPD).
Most blogging gurus – like my business partner Dawn – suggest that a healthy dose of controversy is of useful if you want to boost your readership and encourage people to comment. So let’s get controversial then!
This was going to be a bit of a request blog, along the lines of ‘please send in any controversial topics you would like us to blog about and we’ll give it a go’ sort of thing. But, now that I see these words on the screen, they seem undeniably wimpy. If I want to be controversial, I should be telling you, not asking you, right? So, instead, I’m going to present a random list of controversial ideas of mine in the hope that they’ll stir up some debate. (But if you have any ideas, let me know too…) Continue reading “A Controversial Blog”
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