Building A Network Using Blogs

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Slides from a 90-minute training course for regional newspaper journalists on how to build a network with a blog

Slides from a 90-minute training course for regional newspaper journalists on how to build a network with a blog

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  • 1. Building a network using blogs (Or how to build your audience online)
  • 2. Aims
    • What is different about blogging?
    • What is the point?
    • How to best use blogs
    • Setting up a blog (time permitting)
    • - based on my own experience – not gospel! -
  • 3. Blogs – misunderstood?
    • “ What confuses many journalists is that, to them, blogs are a publishing tool. But what we bloggers know is that blogs are a communication tool.”
    • - Kevin Anderson, Blogs Editor, The Guardian -
  • 4. Publication vs. Communication
    • Publication:
    • One-way process
    • At the end
    • Communication:
    • Two-way process
    • At the start
    - Blogs are communication in a public space - - Most bloggers assume they are sharing ideas with their interested networks - - Blogging platforms are designed to help them build these networks -
  • 5. Why should we care?
    • Newspaper companies
    • Hits and unique users are not enough
    • Lack of strong brand identity online
    • Where is the subscriber equivalent online?
    • Journalists
    • Online community is part of our patch
    • Way to reach beyond the PR machine
    • Individual becoming the trusted brand
    • Way to establish expert credentials
    - This is the competition! -
  • 6. How can journalists use blogs?
    • Find good blog posts
    • Produce good blog posts
    • Market your blog
    • Have the conversation
  • 7. Find good content
    • Research other blogs with related content: - Google Blog Search - Technorati - Blogrolls
    • Subscribe via RSS
  • 8. Produce good content
    • Blogs work when they are based on: Candor Urgency Timeliness Pithiness and Controversy
    • (maybe Utility if you want six)
    • - Seth Godin, Online Marketing Expert, 2004 -
  • 9. Produce good content
    • Subject Ideas:
    • Choose a subject that is connected to your life
    • Story behind the headlines
    • Expert analysis
    • Get inspiration from others (v.important)
    • Don’t be too restrictive
  • 10. Market your blog
    • Can’t just publish and hope search engines will do the job.
    • Newspapers advertise using poster bills – need online equivalent
    • - Blogroll -
    • - Trackbacks -
  • 11. Market your blog
    • Blogroll:
    • List of links to sites that you read
    • Interesting and relevant to your blog
    • Blog owners can see that you’ve linked to them using their report tools
    • Trackbacks:
    • Notifies blogger that you’ve linked to their post.
    • Advertises your site to their audience (if approved)
    • Having trackbacks indicates you’re worth writing about.
    - also remember social networks -
  • 12. Have the Conversation
    • Comment boxes are for everyone – use them!
    • Comments can make or break audience loyalty
    • ALWAYS reply to comments on your blog where possible
    • Comment on other blogs
    • - Remember there are rules of engagement -
  • 13. Don’t be an arsehole - journalists are not anonymous -
  • 14. Don’t be an arsehole
    • (and avoid the Dickwads)
    • Earn your place in a network, don’t expect it.
    • Admit that you are not always right (even if you think you are).
    • Defend your point without dismissing others.
    • Not all humour travels well.
    • Listen.
    • Use reasonableness as a weapon.
    • - Show your humanity -
  • 15. Any Questions?
  • 16. Links
    • Paul Bradshaw - Online Journalism Blog
    • www.onlinejournalismblog.com
    • Jeff Jarvis – Buzzmachine
    • www.buzzmachine.com
    • Alison Gow
    • http:// headlinesanddedlines.blogspot.com /
    • Press Gazette - The Wire
    • blogs.pressgazette.co.uk /wire/
    • Journalism.co.uk
    • www.journalism.co.uk
    • Slides for this presentation
    • www.joannageary.com