Blogging Basics to Get You Started

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A brief introduction to blogging with some helpful tips

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Blogging Basics to Get You Started

  1. 1. Blogging Basics By Zen Ameer 1
  2. 2. Part A What do we mean by the term, ‘Blog’? The word 'Blog' comes from the term 'Web Log‘. The ‘Web’ refers to the Internet..... ... but is this the log we're talking about? 2
  3. 3. Part A A Log, correctly spelled 'logue', comes from the word 'catalogue' - Just like a library catalogue. A log (or logue) is like a register or a record where you make entries, regularly, perhaps. And this is done in chronological order. Available at: http://www.docstoc.com/docs/71528 080/Book-Catalogue-(PDF) Today, we have Logs online that are called web logs,or more commonly, 'Blogs'. 3
  4. 4. Part B Selecting Your Blogging Website You may have your own website with a blog tab, which is good, but an external blog has advantages. Blog sites largely offer free services. The best sites to work with include Wordpress.com and Blogspot.com. The latter is owned by Google, so there are advantages like better SEO (Search Engine Optimization) and auto sync with Google's products. 4
  5. 5. Part C ‘Blogging’ as a Form of Writing It's a form of writing in the First or Second perspective. i.e. Using: We, I, us, and talking to your audience (readers) and addressing them with 'you' and 'your'. For example: “We are engaged in services for the benefit of all humankind. We want you to join us in our effort.” Notice the use of: We, our, us and you. Bottom Line The whole point of your blog post is to write as though you are talking to someone - It has to be conversational, and must be easy for everyone to read. 5
  6. 6. Part D Your Blog Post Topic and Headline You need a topic to write on. This can be almost anything. However, when you have your own blog, you must have a focus. Most blog sites allow you to state what you blog about. Once you have your topics and your writing boundaries set, you will need to narrow them down to individual topics and areas to focus on. 6
  7. 7. Part E Maximize the Strength of Your Introduction You must write a headline that catches your reader's attention, and your headline must be followed by an opening line that sucks your reader in even more. Here are some things you can do to engage your readers once they stop at your headline: Mastering the art of blog writing can be hard work. While your whole blog must be written well, your first 50-70 words are curcial. 7
  8. 8. Tips for Writing a Strong Introduction 1. Pose a Question Challenging the reader to think engages their mind and makes them want to find out the answer. Eg Did you know this rule about XYZ? 2. Open with a Quote This may inspire the reader to continue to read in the hope of finding out what lies beyond the next paragraph Pres.Kennedy Once said: "Ask not what your country can do for you, but what you can do for your country." 8
  9. 9. 3. Deliver a Personal and Powerful Story Being a story teller can captivate people, and a personal or powerful story can do just that. 4. Quote an Interesting Fact or Statistic If you are writing about Facebook, here’s an example that could draw your readers in: “One in every eight minutes spent on the internet is on Facebook”. 9
  10. 10. 5. Create a Mental Image It could be a sentence opening with phrases such as ’imagine this‘ or ‘do you remember when ....?‘. 6. Analogies, Comparisons and Other Tricks You could say something like: “A writer without a blog is like a salesman without a telephone” that tempts and captures the readers attention. 7. Create Context Lead your readers into the main part of the article by creating the context for the rest of the story. Provide some background to the meat of your topic. 10
  11. 11. Part F How to Make Your Blog Post Appealing Include Key Words Pay attention to this point strictly. Do some reaerch regarding the key words people will be looking for. Write for your audience, and 1 million Google computer servers will automatically rank your page, crawling and indexing your words, headlines and keywords. Use sub-headings and bullets Subtitles are your mini headlines that draw your readers to continue reading. This also allows skimmers to move through your post and perhaps spend a few more seconds understanding it. 11
  12. 12. Include Images A picture can be worth a thousand words and convey a clear message. Always name the source of the image. Consider A Video Videos are even better. They help in ranking your page better, and often, a 2-minute video can deliver a concept that 500 words might not achieve. Always name the source of the video. The Hyperlink Hyperlinking your text can bring more value to your article,and can help readers understand more about what you're trying to say. 12
  13. 13. Format For Skimming Make sure your text is consistent and appropriately sized. Use a consistent font type. The size of the font may vary for headings and sub-headings. You may use bold and italicized fonts for accentuating expression and meaning. Line spacing is very important. Ipersonally don't recommend anything less than 1.15 line spacing. Feedback Getting your readers' feedback is always helpful if you plan to write more on your chosen topic. You can end with something like this: “Have you learnt anything from this post that has added to your knowledge?” 13
  14. 14. The Closing You need to re-state your position on the issue you have discussed at this point. It must match your headline and opening paragraphs. It could be a statement or a question. 14
  15. 15. The End 15

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