Blogging 101 - Research-Plan-Engage-Measure

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This file provides new bloggers with advice on how to get started blogging. The focus is on business blogging.

This file provides new bloggers with advice on how to get started blogging. The focus is on business blogging.

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  • BTE is a catchy, graphic way to describe the complex concept of tacit knowledge… Information is a by-product – what we are looking for is to collaborate – to build the relationships and tap into the knowledge and capabilities available via the relationship
  • Influential Bloggers have the ability to reach people who otherwise would not have known about the new product Here is an example of how that happens New product announced News is released on tech-portals Promo clips and product presentations uploaded to media-sharing sites Joe, an influential blogger reads about it and decides to put it on his blog. Joe finds images, video clips, and product info and posts to his blog More influencers find out about IBM’s new product. They talk about it…. They write reviews… and we at IBM can use those reviews at IBM.com as 3 rd party unbiased reviews In the end, decision makers consult the online buzz in their social networks and find these blogs and reviews. They use this information as input into their decision making process Our clients want help in developing a strategy to identify existing internal and external subject matter experts and develop them into online community and social networking influencers that can positively impact the IBM brand.
  • How often do I need to post? I would recommend posting at least once a week. While more is usually better, posting less frequently is not always a problem. As long as you’re establishing and maintaining the connection to your readers, a specific schedule isn’t as important. Personally, I find that my posts come in spurts. I may go a week between posting, and then publish 5 posts over the course of 2 days. How long do posts have to be? Not long at all - the post length should fit the content. Sometimes it will be 2 sentences, sometimes 2 paragraphs, and sometimes (OK, rarely) 2 pages. How long does it take to create a post? For in-depth posts, it probably takes anywhere from 1 - 2 hours, depending on the topic, how long the post, how much you need to look around for links. If you're just commenting on an interesting article or pointing out a new video, it may take 10 min to create a post.
  • How often do I need to post? I would recommend posting at least once a week. While more is usually better, posting less frequently is not always a problem. As long as you’re establishing and maintaining the connection to your readers, a specific schedule isn’t as important. Personally, I find that my posts come in spurts. I may go a week between posting, and then publish 5 posts over the course of 2 days. How long do posts have to be? Not long at all - the post length should fit the content. Sometimes it will be 2 sentences, sometimes 2 paragraphs, and sometimes (OK, rarely) 2 pages. How long does it take to create a post? For in-depth posts, it probably takes anywhere from 1 - 2 hours, depending on the topic, how long the post, how much you need to look around for links. If you're just commenting on an interesting article or pointing out a new video, it may take 10 min to create a post.
  • How often do I need to post? I would recommend posting at least once a week. While more is usually better, posting less frequently is not always a problem. As long as you’re establishing and maintaining the connection to your readers, a specific schedule isn’t as important. Personally, I find that my posts come in spurts. I may go a week between posting, and then publish 5 posts over the course of 2 days. How long do posts have to be? Not long at all - the post length should fit the content. Sometimes it will be 2 sentences, sometimes 2 paragraphs, and sometimes (OK, rarely) 2 pages. How long does it take to create a post? For in-depth posts, it probably takes anywhere from 1 - 2 hours, depending on the topic, how long the post, how much you need to look around for links. If you're just commenting on an interesting article or pointing out a new video, it may take 10 min to create a post.
  • Don't Waste Time...Be Productive!! Write about 1) the project you are working OR 2) an emerging topic area you are passionate about. Provide factual information, then add your sights. Blog about a conference call or webinar. Your Reader Is Your Client. Treat your readers like you would your best client. The quality of the content in your blog entry should be similar to any deliverable your would hand your client. For example, don’t just copy and paste text from another article, even if you set it up within quotes. Add your value in your own words. Do this by adding your own analysis, insights and recommendations. Include hot links to articles and other work you and others have done on the blog or elsewhere so readers can continue the learning process. Make it look professional. Make it look like you would want any professional deliverable to look like. Keep the look and feel consistent. Check for grammatical and spelling errors. Consider including a picture or video if appropriate. Spend time looking through other blog entries to see what posts look the most professional, then try to duplicate that effort. Be passionate, but don't 'rant/rave‘ or complain. Be Visible and Conversational. Come back often and check up on comments to your blog and other blog posts. Readers enjoy an interactive conversation….not a one way communication.
  • Social Computing Guidelines: http://w3.ibm.com/blog/guidelines.html Business Conduct Guidelines: http://w3-03.ibm.com/ibm/documents/corpdocweb.nsf/ContentDocsByTitle/Business+Conduct+Guidelines
  • How often do I need to post? I would recommend posting at least once a week. While more is usually better, posting less frequently is not always a problem. As long as you’re establishing and maintaining the connection to your readers, a specific schedule isn’t as important. Personally, I find that my posts come in spurts. I may go a week between posting, and then publish 5 posts over the course of 2 days. How long do posts have to be? Not long at all - the post length should fit the content. Sometimes it will be 2 sentences, sometimes 2 paragraphs, and sometimes (OK, rarely) 2 pages. How long does it take to create a post? For in-depth posts, it probably takes anywhere from 1 - 2 hours, depending on the topic, how long the post, how much you need to look around for links. If you're just commenting on an interesting article or pointing out a new video, it may take 10 min to create a post.
  • How often do I need to post? I would recommend posting at least once a week. While more is usually better, posting less frequently is not always a problem. As long as you’re establishing and maintaining the connection to your readers, a specific schedule isn’t as important. Personally, I find that my posts come in spurts. I may go a week between posting, and then publish 5 posts over the course of 2 days. How long do posts have to be? Not long at all - the post length should fit the content. Sometimes it will be 2 sentences, sometimes 2 paragraphs, and sometimes (OK, rarely) 2 pages. How long does it take to create a post? For in-depth posts, it probably takes anywhere from 1 - 2 hours, depending on the topic, how long the post, how much you need to look around for links. If you're just commenting on an interesting article or pointing out a new video, it may take 10 min to create a post.

Transcript

  • 1. Contact: Bill Chamberlin, Principal Consultant, Social Insights Practice, IBM Market Insights Blogging 101: Research. Plan. Engage. Measure Version 3-0
  • 2. About Me
    • Joined IBM January 1981 as a Systems Engineer
    • Career in Sales and Marketing
    • HorizonWatch Community (internal IBM Community) Leader since 2000 focusing on emerging trends, technologies, and business issues.
    • Current Title: Principal Consultant - Social Insights, Corporate Market Insights
    • Where you can find me hanging out online
      • Profile = LinkedIn
      • Community = Horizonwatching
      • Blogs
        • Typepad = Horizonwatching
        • Tumblr = HorizonWatching
        • Tumblr = Smarter Planet
      • Twitter ID = Horizonwatching
      • Facebook = HorizonWatching
  • 3. About This Presentation
    • This deck is meant for those interested in starting a blog for business purposes
    • URLs are hotlinked. When you are in screenshow, you can click on a link to be taken to the website.
  • 4. Table of Contents
    • An Introduction to Blogging
      • What is it?
      • Why blog?
    • Getting Started
      • Research
        • Searching for other bloggers
        • “ Listening” to the conversations
      • Plan
        • How to set up a blog
        • Things to think about before you start
      • Engage
        • Start blogging!!
      • Measure
            • How Are You Doing?
    • Getting Better
            • Tips
            • Example Blogs
    Research Plan Engage Measure
  • 5. Table of Contents
    • An Introduction to Blogging
      • What is it?
      • Why blog?
    • Getting Started
      • Research
        • Searching for other bloggers
        • “ Listening” to the conversations
      • Plan
        • How to set up a blog
        • Things to think about before you start
      • Engage
        • Start blogging!!
      • Measure
            • How Are You Doing?
    • Getting Better
            • Tips
            • Example Blogs
    Research Plan Engage Measure
  • 6. What’s a Blog?
    • Short for “Web log”
    • Term first used in 1997
    • Easy to publish website that serves as a platform to share specialized knowledge or a unique perspective
      • Allows individuals (or groups) to directly and easily share ideas with others online.
    • A conversation catalyst, not just a publishing medium.
      • Ability of readers to comment encourages discussion, debate and sense of extended community.
      • Results in active interlinking among blogs
  • 7. Web 2.0 and new social media has opened up many new sources for communication and collaboration.
  • 8. The Influencer Network Is Changing Advertisers Publishers Media Bloggers Editors Journalists / Reporters “ Consumers turning to each other online is not a fad anymore. Companies opening up to customers isn’t that different from the risks associated with doing business every day,” -- Forrester Research Industry Analysts Customers / Consumers Trusted Bloggers / Twitters / Social Connections Traditional Media
  • 9. Why have blogs become so popular?
    • We are all interested in what bloggers say because we want to:
    • Hear the story behind the document/article
    • Learn from an expert’s ideas and opinions
    • Confirm what we think we know
    • Decide what we should pay attention to
    • Keep up with fast-changing information
    • Feel connected to someone who has similar interests and knowledge
    BTE 2 Blogs allows us to tap into the power of people: BTE2 “behind the eyes and between the ears”
  • 10. Many bloggers have found out that blogs are a great way to quickly share information with a large audience
    • You write once and your content:
    • Can be searched
    • Can be found
    • Opens your network
    • Encourages dialog
    • Builds reputation
    • Is an ever-present archive
  • 11. The most popular bloggers realize that they have the ability to influence decision makers New product announced. Social strategy kicks in Joe = Influential Blogger $$$ Jane = Influential Blogger $$$ $$$ $$$ The more SMEs we have adding their voice to the conversations in the Social Media, the more opportunity we have to influence purchase decisions
  • 12. Why be interested in blogging outreach programs?
    • Understand: Monitor online conversations to understand market better, identify who is influencing the conversation and in what social networks they are most active – understand influencers
    • Participate in Conversations: Open communication channels. Create a feedback loop. Build /strengthen relationships with external stakeholders.
    • Engage & Activate: Help influencers become advocates. Foster stronger advocacy and word-of-mouth, make it simple for them
    • Drive demand: for products & services. Measure and adjust
    • Boost Search Engine Optimization (SEO): Increase share of search through building link equity.
    • Brand Management: Help enhance and protect company reputation. Build a community around the brand.
  • 13. Why should YOU be interested in blogging?
    • Establish YOUR personal brand. Enhance your career.
    • Establish / strengthen YOUR SME credibility
    • Expand your personal network
    • Improve your communication skills
    • Helps you do your job better:
      • Share news and detailed information
      • Clear up misconceptions in the market
      • Understand the needs of our customers and constituents
      • Refine key messages and selling points
    • Help sell more products
    • Influence / educate others
  • 14. Table of Contents
    • An Introduction to Blogging
      • What is it?
      • Why blog?
    • Getting Started
      • Research
        • Searching for other bloggers
        • “ Listening” to the conversations
      • Plan
        • How to set up a blog
        • Things to think about before you start
      • Engage
        • Start blogging!!
      • Measure
            • How Are You Doing?
    • Getting Better
            • Tips
            • Example Blogs
    Research Plan Engage Measure
  • 15. Search and find blogs of interest to you
    • Some Examples:
    • IT Analysts
      • Forrester http://blogs.forrester.com/
      • Gartner http://blogs.gartner.com/
      • IDC Exchange: http://blogs.idc.com/ie/
    • IT Industry Companies
      • IBMer’s Blogs: http://www.ibm.com/blogs/zz/en/
      • Accenture: http://www.accenture.com/Global/Accenture_Blogs/
      • Cisco Blogs: http://blogs.cisco.com
      • Oracle Blogs: http://blogs.oracle.com/
      • Google Blogs: http://www.google.com/press/blogs/directory.html
    • Example Risk Management Blogs
      • Risk Management Monitor: http://www.riskmanagementmonitor.com/
      • Operational Risk Management: http://operationalrisk.blogspot.com/
      • Forrester Security and Risk: http://blogs.forrester.com/security_and_risk
      • Burton Group: http://srmsblog.burtongroup.com/
      • The Clear Risk blog: http://blog.clearrisk.com/
  • 16. Google blog advanced search options lets you fine tune your search for the blogs that are specific to your topic area http://blogsearch.google.com/blogsearch/advanced_blog_search
  • 17. Google blog search: Example search results page
  • 18. IceRocket is a popular blog and social search tool
  • 19. Technorati search is another tool to help you find relevant blogs
  • 20. Twithority can also help you identify influencers for your topic area
  • 21. Table of Contents
    • An Introduction to Blogging
      • What is it?
      • Why blog?
    • Getting Started
      • Research
        • Searching for other bloggers
        • “ Listening” to the conversations
      • Plan
        • How to set up a blog
        • Things to think about before you start
      • Engage
        • Start blogging!!
      • Measure
            • How Are You Doing?
    • Getting Better
            • Tips
            • Example Blogs
    Research Plan Engage Measure
  • 22. Have a plan. Link any effort in blogging to your overall business objectives. Business Process Potential Uses Marketing Research Monitor other blogs. Understand customers, influencers, etc. Monitor conversations around topics ( e.g., your brand, your key customers, your main competitors, etc.) Communications Distribute news, press releases, real-time information, crisis management, news during events, product announcements Networking Form new relationships and ‘ecosystems’ with all stakeholders, including influencers (analysts, bloggers, journalists), peers, colleagues, customers, Marketing Promotion, coupons, search engine optimization, brand marketing, Influencer marketing, event marketing, social content distribution Customer Sales & Support Connect , strengthen relationships, get feedback , conduct polls, provide assistance, link to information, etc. Partner Support Connect , strengthen relationships, get feedback, conduct polls, provide assistance, link to information, etc. Human Resources Recruit! Promote company & careers, post jobs Product Management Generate new ideas, test ideas, get feedback
  • 23. Understand that being a blogger is similar to being a journalist who writes a daily/weekly/monthly column in a newspaper or magazine
    • Activities include:
      • Researching topics to write about
      • Writing & posting updates to your blog
      • Reading blog posts by others and commenting there
      • Respond to comments posted on your blog
    • A good blog is one where posts are fresh and new posts are frequent .
  • 24. The amount of time you spend blogging will depend on how active you want to be.
    • How often do I need to post?
      • Try to be predictable.
      • At least once a week.
    • How long does it take to create a post?
      • For in-depth posts = 1 - 2 hours.
      • For quick posts = 5-10 min
      • For microblogs = seconds
  • 25. Single author blogs vs multi-author blogs
    • Single Author Blog
      • Personal connection
      • Readers know what to expect
    • Multi Author Blog
      • Random reading - variety of topics and writing styles
      • Quality may vary between blog authors, but this approach typically produces much more volume of posts than a single author blog
      • Readers may not connect with the writer
    • A better approach to setting up a Multi Author Blog is to setup a Single Author Blog and to invite guest writers.
  • 26. Anatomy of a blog: What should be on your blog’s website?
    • The Blog
      • The posts (the stuff the owner writes)
      • Comments (comments on a post, often anyone can leave these)
      • Trackback (a post on another blog which is linked to the original post via a comment) For more info on trackbacks click here
    • Side Bar
      • BlogRoll - A list of other blogs that the blogger reads regularly
      • Bookmarks – Links to featured posts or articles
      • TagCloud – Summary of tags (keywords) the author enters for each post
      • Featured Categories
    • Other
      • Twitter Feed: Embed your latest Tweets
      • Subscribtion to Feeds (RSS, ATOM) - A way for readers to subscribe to updates from your blog.
      • Archives
  • 27. A quick review of some external platforms
    • For more information:
      • Choosing a Blogging Platform
      • The blog platforms of choice among the top 100 blogs
      • Blog software - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    Platform Pro Con Wordpress, Typepad, Blogger, Blogsmith, Moveable Type Very easy to set up. A fair amount of Customizability. Free (Typepad and Wordpress has upgrades available for $) Not a personal domain (although you can redirect to it) Not as fully customizable as if you run your own blog. Free service hosted in the cloud – no/limited guarantees IT Toolbox Easy to set up. Free. Network effect of being included on IT Toolbox Very limited customizability in look and feel. IT Toolbox design/layout may not be for everyone. URL harder to share (although can do redirect)
  • 28. Table of Contents
    • An Introduction to Blogging
      • What is it?
      • Why blog?
    • Getting Started
      • Research
        • Searching for other bloggers
        • “ Listening” to the conversations
      • Plan
        • How to set up a blog
        • Things to think about before you start
      • Engage
        • Start blogging!!
      • Measure
            • How Are You Doing?
    • Getting Better
            • Tips
            • Example Blogs
    Research Plan Engage Measure
  • 29. What do you blog about?
    • Your first blog should introduce yourself to the community
    • Talk about topics you are:
      • Comfortable with
      • Happy to discuss with a wider audience
      • Have knowledge of (unless asking for information)
    • Be prepared for responses
  • 30. What should you blog about?
    • That conference you recently attended
    • Product announcements
    • Product feature previews
    • A press release we just issued
    • An analyst report that ranks us highly (or low)
    • Your thoughts on an interesting blog post or article you just read
    • The customer visit you’re flying back from
    • A debate the product team is having on whether to include feature A or feature B
    • What are you thinking about right now?
    • What will be important in your professional area 5 years from now? 10 years from now?
  • 31. Some basic formatting tips
    • Length = Don’t worry. Write to fit the post (although don’t run on needlessly)
    • Images = Great Idea!
      • Google Image Search and Flickr ( http://flickr.com ) – but pay attention to reuse rights
    • Videos = Yes!!
    • Tags = Lots of tags help others find your blog entry
    • Links = Lots of them, too
      • The more you link to others, the more others will link to you
      • Promote your company
  • 32. Make blogging a part of your day
    • Don't Waste Time...Be Productive!!
      • Write about 1) the project you are working OR 2) an emerging topic area you are passionate about.
    • Your Reader Is Your Client.
      • Treat your readers like you would your best client.
    • Make it look professional.
      • Make it look like you would want any professional deliverable to look like.
    • Be Visible and Conversational.
      • Readers enjoy an interactive conversation….not a one way communication.
  • 33. Be a thought leader
    • Share personal reflections, perspectives and ideas on issues and current events (be smart, but be yourself).
    • Have deep discussions on important emerging trends.
    • Connect with thought leaders - engage in their blogs and communities.
    • Link to other thoughtful blogs in your posts. Talk back and forth.
    • Be provocative. Take a stand.
  • 34. What should you not write about?
    • Anything that can only be shared under a non-disclosure agreement (NDA)
    • Revenue or sales figures
      • Other than what is officially reported by IBM
    • Disclosing customer information
      • If they have not agreed to be a reference
    • Making commitments about product futures
    • Anything that goes against IBM’s social computing guidelines or business conduct guidelines
    • Anything that you would not want to see reprinted on the front page of the Wall Street Journal.
  • 35. Table of Contents
    • An Introduction to Blogging
      • What is it?
      • Why blog?
    • Getting Started
      • Research
        • Searching for other bloggers
        • “ Listening” to the conversations
      • Plan
        • How to set up a blog
        • Things to think about before you start
      • Engage
        • Start blogging!!
      • Measure
            • How Are You Doing?
    • Getting Better
            • Tips
            • Example Blogs
    Research Plan Engage Measure
  • 36. Measuring success of your blog
    • Reach = Number of Visitors
    • ‘ Stickiness’ = Number of Subscribers
    • Engagement = Number of Comments
    • Authority = Inbound Links (e.g. citations)
    • Conversion = Traffic to Links Promoted
    • Source = Hubspot, 5 Ways to Measure the Success of Your Business Blog
  • 37. Corporate bloggers focus on measuring number of visitors and comments. Source: Technorati’s State of the Blogosphere 2009
  • 38. Table of Contents
    • An Introduction to Blogging
      • What is it?
      • Why blog?
    • Getting Started
      • Research
        • Searching for other bloggers
        • “ Listening” to the conversations
      • Plan
        • How to set up a blog
        • Things to think about before you start
      • Engage
        • Start blogging!!
      • Measure
            • How Are You Doing?
    • Getting Better
            • Tips
            • Example Blogs
    Research Plan Engage Measure
  • 39. Things learned from years of blogging
    • Don’t make it look/feel/read “corporate” website. Write in a conversational tone.
    • Listen to your audience
    • Interactivity
      • Participate after you post.
    • Freshness
      • Post on a consistent basis. You decide the frequency.
    • Admit mistakes publicly
    • Don't expect praise
      • Expect criticism. Accept and engage critics...to a point
    • Be factual
      • Proof points / case studies
    • Become an authoritative information source for your readers
  • 40. Additional Blogging Tips
    • Write about what you know and what you truly care about
    • Know your audience, talk about things they want to learn about, discuss and find valuable
    • Link when appropriate to other relevant blogs and materials
    • If you quote another blogger be sure to credit the creator
    • When commenting, always be transparent about your identity and affiliation
    • Don’t be corporate or overly formal; strive for communication in a natural and authentic tone
    • Take the time to know people you want to connect with by reading their blogs
    • Start, build upon, contribute to discussions on topics of interest amongst the other bloggers
    • There is no "off the record"; any communication with bloggers may end up on their blogs
    • Follow the IBM Social Computing & Blogging Guidelines
  • 41. Some IBM related blogs
    • Smarter Planet http://asmarterplanet.com/ and http://smarterplanet.tumblr.com/
    • IBM Research - http://ibmresearchnews.blogspot.com/
    • Ed Brill – Sales BUE for Lotus Notes http://www.edbrill.com (Notes/Domino)
    • Mary Beth Raven – Design lead for Lotus Notes http://www.notesdesignblog.com
    • Chris Eaton – DB2 Product Manager http://blogs.ittoolbox.com/database/technology
    • Mix and Mash blog http://www.mix-and-mash.com
    • “ Turbo” Todd Watson http://www.ibm.com/developerworks/blogs/page/Turbo
    • Luis Suarez - http://www.elsua.net/
    • Irving Wladawsky-Berger - http://blog.irvingwb.com/
  • 42. My Active Blogs and Microblogs
    • HorizonWatching on Typepad: http://www.horizonwatching.typepad.com/
    • HorizonWatching on Tumblr = http://horizonwatching.tumblr.com/
    • Smarter Planet on Tumblr: http://smarterplanet.tumblr.com/
    • Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/horizonwatching
    • Facebook = HorizonWatching
  • 43. In Summary
    • Blogs are a great way to share information
      • Test your ideas out with a wide audience
      • Learn from others
      • Form new relationships
      • Build / manage your online personal brand
    • Recommended Reading - IBM's Social Computing Guidelines at http://www.ibm.com/blogs/zz/en/guidelines.html