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Kirstie McDermott dot conf 2012 presentation


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Dot Conf presentation 2012 Kirstie McDermott - 25 things I learned from 5.5 years in the Irish blogosphere

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Kirstie McDermott dot conf 2012 presentation

  1. 1. 1 Find your USP (no, not your USB) •Love your subject •Passion shows, and it attracts fans •Stick with it – readers will be happy to grow along with you •Be quirky •Offer a twist on a standard format - in a sea of baking/music/book blogs, how can you make yours shine?
  2. 2. 2 Resist the temptation to diversify •Its often a just cos thing •You get a bit bored or blocked with what youre bogging about, so you start writing about new, unrelated subjects •Can be PR-led •But why were your readers logging on in the first place?
  3. 3. 4 Watch your tone The I voice is important Be friendly and funny Be colloquial – Irish people love Irish content Engage readers with stories, use anecdotes Never lose sight of quality
  4. 4. 5 Be consistent, topical and timely Set yourself achievable goals Decide to blog 1,2,3 times a week and stick to it Be on time with news and trends If something happened a week ago, leave it
  5. 5. 6 Schedule and plan Your blog will suck up every second of every minute of every day of every month of every year if you let it Organise yourself! Use tools like Wordpress Editorial Calendar Schedule content ahead of time Aim for a mix
  6. 6. 8 Cultivate your source material Is your blog self-directed? Can you use PR firms? Follow influencers in your area on Twitter Add relevant feeds to Google reader, use Google Alerts Immerse yourself in your subject Subscribe to ezines, relevant directory and industry sources
  7. 7. 9 Respect those sources If youve seen something elsewhere and use it, credit the originator Dont think its important? It is! The blogging vs print debate is reductive and silly if youre stealing all of Vogues shoots for your fashion blog, SANS CREDIT and then claiming blogs will take down magazines
  8. 8. 10 Listen to your readers What do readers want? What are they asking for? Keep an eye on comments and feedback and do more of what gets lots of engagement Keep an eye on social shares Whats a hit? What fails? Know your reader
  9. 9. 11 Listen to Google Learn to love Google Analytics Take measurements – sometimes you might be surprised that comment-free posts are strong search returners or shared frequently Try not to turn into weird woodland fetish site
  10. 10. 12 Yep, you can make money Google AdSense is designed for blogs Get smart about placements, custom channels and filtering out the ads you dont want Affiliate networks like Awin and Commission Junction But dont expect to get rich quick. Or, er, ever
  11. 11. 13 Because youre worth it Youve built your traffic, reputation and brand awareness Now its time to start getting some revenue back Its not work unless its being paid for
  12. 12. 14 The No-Budget bleat We want you to hang yourself off a balcony backwards while in the nip, whistling Dixie, live blogging it and giving away 56,000 products for our client youll have to pay to post out yourself PS: weve no budget
  13. 13. 15 Think about titles and keywords Clever puns work well in newspapers and magazines, but are shag all use for search return Make sure to get the subject of the post into the title Make sure to mention the product in the first paragraph
  14. 14. 16 Theres no such thing as just a blog post anymore You need to think of the whole 360 Its a Tweet Its a Facebook status update Make sure your blog has good social share buttons Are you using Google+?
  15. 15. 17 Twitter and Facebook work You need search traffic and SEO is vital, but a multi-pronged approach is best Its the having lots of eggs in your basket approach Auto-tweet your posts using Twitterfeed or Use images on Facebook for more traction
  16. 16. 18 Pinterest is the new big referrer Want to drive more traffic? Pinterest is yer only man. Or woman, as it turns out Link to images, as opposed to uploading them Add a link to your site in the description Watermark if youre very concerned about dissemination
  17. 17. 19 Make friends Theres a social aspect to blogging that cant be underestimated Its a hobby that can grow into a business But it can bring you a whole new circle of friends and that enriches your life on another level too
  18. 18. 20 But dont be a douche The web offers you amazing opportunities to market your blog and social media tools are one of the best ways to do it Aim to not be that person who leaves asinine comments on posts they havent read, purely so they can leave the link to at the end No one likes that person
  19. 19. 21 Make the most of the resources out there Blogging can be a total money pit You can feel you need a DSLR camera, Photoshop, special lights, a studio, amazing high- end gadgetry – you dont Online resources like Plixr for photo editing, Mailchimp for free lists up to a set amount, Problogger and Copyblogger are all great, and zero pee CMS like Wordpress and Drupal are free
  20. 20. 22 Never stop learning Stretch yourself constantly Dont know CSS? Go on – give it a go  Learn basic photo editing Find out what all those buttons do on your camera Experiment with a video or two Plan into the future for things you might do next year
  21. 21. 24 Yes, give out your stats Theyre not precious pearls Magazine and newspapers are circulation audited – so why shouldnt you be? Important metrics are page impressions and unique visitors Hits are meaningless as a measure
  22. 22. 25 Learn how to say no The biggest and best lesson to learn It will make you a better blogger Learn that you own your blog, not a PR firm and you can say no Not everything can or will be a fit
  23. 23. Thank you! @kirstie