Assessment of Success</li></li></ul><li>What is a <br />?<br />According to wikipedia.com: <br />A blog (a blend of the term web log) is a type of website or part of a website. Blogs are usually maintained by an individual with regular entries of commentary, descriptions of events, or other material such as graphics or video. Entries are commonly displayed in reverse-chronological order. Blog can also be used as a verb, meaning to maintain or add content to a blog.<br />Most blogs are interactive, allowing visitors to leave comments and even message each other via widgets on the blogs and it is this interactivity that distinguishes them from other static websites.<br />Many blogs provide commentary or news on a particular subject; others function as more personal online diaries. A typical blog combines text, images, and links to other blogs, Web pages, and other media related to its topic. The ability of readers to leave comments in an interactive format is an important part of many blogs. Most blogs are primarily textual, although some focus on art (art blog), photographs (photoblog), videos (video blogging or vlogging), music (MP3 blog), and audio (podcasting). Microblogging is another type of blogging, featuring very short posts.<br />As of 16 February 2011, there were over 156 million public blogs in existence.[3<br />
Why Use Blogs in Student Affairs & Higher Education?<br /><ul><li> Shared Reflection (Service, Leadership, Employment, Professional Development)
Beyond A Newsletter: Sharing Your Department or Divisional Story in a Modern Way
Building Communities Around a Common Purpose or Topic
Built-In Assessment Tools To Analyze Qualitative and Quantitative Data</li></li></ul><li>Initial Steps<br /><ul><li> Do you want a branded URL (e.g. http://rccblog.com)? If not, then move on to the next step.
Get your branded URL at</li></ul>for $10/year (includes registration) <br /><ul><li> Doing this ensures that you have the URL you want. Now you have to find a “host” for it.</li></li></ul><li>Initial Steps<br /><ul><li> Select a webhost for your blog:</li></ul>Paid Domains<br />Free Domains<br />
Create a HostGator Account and follow the steps to add your URL to the hosting service<br />
In namecheap, under Domain Name Server Setup, click on ‘Specify Custom DNS servers’, and add the information from HostGator here.<br />On the HostGator main screen, copy the “Name Servers” information.<br />
To Register Your Free Domain <br />With WordPress<br />Fill out all the<br />Information here<br />and create your <br />Account.<br />Make sure the Blog<br />Address matches<br />Your office, dept.,<br />Or organization<br />Branding.<br />Follow Login <br />Information.<br />
Installing WordPress on <br />Your Custom URL<br /><ul><li> Now that you own and are hosting a custom URL, I recommend installing WordPress as your blogging platform.
Visit http://edcabellon.com/tech/blogcreation for detailed instructions. Once completed, you will have now have access to your WordPress“dashboard” in order to create new blog posts.</li></li></ul><li>Developing Your Blog’s Plan<br /><ul><li> Determine early on why you want to start a blog and how it lines up with your department/organization’s mission and vision.
What are the learning outcomes you want your students to gain? Write up job descriptions around them. (e.g. http://www.bridgew.edu/CampusCenter/RCCBlog.pdf )
Put together a team of employees and/or volunteers
Set clear expectations for each person on their role within your Blog (writer, editor-in-chief, marketer, page developer)
Create your “blog standards” and format for consistency: (e.g. 750 words or less, two citations, engaging photos/videos)
Create a writing schedule for your team and a two week lead time of topics. Set hard deadlines and stick to them.
Set goals for number of views per post (e.g. 50, 100, 150, etc.) for the initial week it is up.</li></li></ul><li>Assessing Success<br /><ul><li>Metrics #1: Unique Visitors & Number of Visits (overall, per post)</li></li></ul><li>Assessing Success<br /><ul><li>Metrics #2: Average Number of Comments</li></ul>Take the # of comments / # of Posts = <br />Conversation Rate<br />
Assessing Success<br /><ul><li>Metrics #3: Online & Offline Growth</li></ul>Have you grown over time?<br />
Final Thoughts<br /><ul><li>Find topics that your staff are already passionate about. Have the write about these.
Use Facebook, Twitter, and Email to share your posts with others.
Ask “Guest Bloggers” to bring new traffic to your blog.
Try ending your blog posts with a question mark to spur conversation.
Keep posts to 750 words or less.</li></li></ul><li>Using<br />In Student Affairs<br />Webinar for StudentAffairs.com | August 19, 2011<br />Presented by: Ed Cabellon, Director – Campus Center<br />Bridgewater State University<br />@EdCabellon | http://about.me/EdCabellon<br />
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