Friday, October 27, 2006

6 Things You Must Do If You Want To Have An Effectively Branded Blog
B Hopkins

The term blogging has recently found its way into the standard Internet terminology. While most people don't have a blog, or don't even know the first thing about blogging, they have heard of the term and have at least a vague idea of what it means. If you decide to venture into the world of blogging, there are some things you must do to increase your chances of making your blog more successful. Most of these things are common sense, but some of them may be new to a first-time blogger.
1. Identify the Target Market for Your Blog
You should focus on one topic area, or related topic areas for your blog. If your blog wanders too much in many different directions, it becomes a general discussion blog, and you risk losing the more motivated readers. For example, if your target market of interest is travel, then you would want to focus your blog on topics related to travel. You could broaden your topics to include adventure travel, cruises, all-inclusives, hotels, etc., however the more focused you are in your topics (if you just stick with cruises), the more effective your blog will be in terms of branding you as an expert about cruises, and the more responsive your readers will be to your cruise related posts.
2. Give the Readers to Your Blog What They Want
Unless your blog is set up to just display your random streams of consciousness, the readers to your blog are going to want valuable and timely information that is accurate. If you are making statements about policies or current events, you should back them up with links to the sources you used to make those statements. It is also important to keep the reader interested by giving your own personal insights, or giving a new way to look at current events. Putting your own personality into your blog is essential and will keep your readers interested in what you have to say.
3. The More Creative Your Blog, The Better
Be creative within reason of course. However with so many blogs out there today, it's now more difficult to have your blog stand out from the rest. Your blog must have personality and depth to keep people's interest. Also realize that your blog will not appeal to everyone, and that is OK. Your blog is not meant to appeal to everyone, that is why you first went through the step of determining your target market and targeting your blog to those readers.
4. Your Blog Should Be Clear
While your grammar doesn't have to be perfect every time, or at a college level, it should be easily readable. If your blog is written in such a way that people have to re-read it 3 or 4 times in order to understand it, then you will quickly lose their interest. Remember, your readers don't want to have to work to read your blog, and they shouldn't have to if they know how to read. Make sure your spelling and punctuation are correct. The points you wish to make in your blog posts should also be to the point and clear, and not wander to far from the main subject, as this will confuse the reader, or cause the visitor to lose interest before they finish reading your blog posting.
5. Keep Your Blog Content Up To Date
Think of your blog as your way of communicating with the world. Communication is an ongoing activity and your blog should act in the same way. Make regular updates and postings to your blog to keep the content fresh. One of the easiest ways to do add fresh content is to create a blog posting where you comment about what is going on in the news, and relate that news item to your topic. It may require some creativity, but it should be quite doable.
6. Make Your Blog Interactive.
One of the best ways to keep your readers interested is to allow them to comment on your blog. If your blog is really interesting and inciteful to your readers, chances are they will want to comment on what you have to say. This provides more points of view and is also a very easy way to keep your blog up to date without you having to write everything yourself.
Be sure to keep a close eye on your comments however, as there are spammers who will post irrelevant comments on your blog just to get a link back to their own completely unrelated site. Many blog programs now come with verification features that will force a live user to enter a comment. This doesn't stop spammers completely, but it does stop the automated programs from filling your blog with comment spam.
The world of blogging is a great way to allow individuals to express their opinions, businesses to strengthen their customer relationships, and website owners to bring more exposure to their websites. The more successfully you follow the above tips, the better you will be able to brand yourself as an expert in that area, and the more exposure you will get to your blog and/or business. Your next steps should be updating your blogging style to include the above steps, learning more about blogs, discovering what software is available, and finding out where you can read more about blogs.
You don't have handle the world of blogging alone. Whether you have a blog or not, you can always learn more at this content article directory Don't spend all that time creating and building your blog without learning about how it can earn an income for you. Get Blogging Success today.

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Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Why Blogging Is Crucial To Your Business In Today's Business World
Gregg Hall

Intellectual people fill the rooms of successful businesses, and they've all noticed the benefits that both formal and informal blogs have reaped in past years. Moreover, they will not stand aside and watch this train pass them buy, so many businesses have also stepped unto the blogging locomotive.
Businesses use blogs for a variety of reasons, from drumming up business to receiving customer feedback to building team morale. They've examined the blogs out there, and they want a piece of the blog pie that has made other corporations, individuals, and groups so successful.
Successful blogs will look inviting and yet professional. Obviously you want the respect from your customers that you deserve, and so a professional looking blog should demand that kind of respect. At the same time you want a place that people will want to visit, so you need to have a casual, inviting feel to the blog. You can achieve this through your color and style choice, so consider these carefully when creating the blog. The professional aspect of the blog will also come into play when you consider its usability: make it user friendly. Consider posting notes from the supervisors or president of the company to start out with and to invite your customers to continue to visit the site.
Businesses use their blogs in more ways than just to touch base with their customers. Some companies have opted for in house blogs that pertain only to employees. This especially works well for larger companies. Many companies offer employees the opportunity to provide feedback about the company along side the customers who can also provide feedback. Such blogs open the lines of communication around the office between consumers and employees.
Some companies also use blogs to solve in house problems. Employees may have the opportunity to share their opinions about a given issue in the office. These kinds of sites seem to work best when an employee can voice his opinion anonymously instead of risking his reputation in front of his fellow employees.
And finally, many companies have used blogs to build team morale. They give employees an opportunity to share the great things about their company, and administration also posts information about the company that pertains to employees and genuinely builds up the atmosphere in the office. These kinds of blogs are used to post events like weddings involving employees or birthdays or birth announcements.
In the end, the majority of those who have jumped unto the blog locomotive have not regretted their decision. Blogs have opened a whole new line of communication among customers, employees, and supervisors and in the end, everyone benefits from better communication. So what are you waiting for? Start blogging today.
Gregg Hall is an author living in Navarre Beach, Florida. Find more about this as well as business books at
http://www.executivebusinessbooksummaries.com
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Sunday, October 22, 2006

The 5 Secrets of Top Bloggers
Michael Fleischner

Blogs are becoming more and more popular. If you don't already have a weblog of your own, you've at least posted a comment to one, read one, or heard the term used in everyday conversation.
You may also have noticed that only a small number of blogs are truly known in each industry. As is true with most major media, "the cream rises to the top". The best weblogs have a large following and are valuable sources of information for thousands of readers. There are five primary reasons why some blogs become popular and others don't.
1. Focusing on a Popular Content Area. One of the most important characteristics of a successful blog is appropriate content. In order to gain a large following your blog must cover a topical area that is broad enough to be of interest to a large number of individuals but specific enough to have meaning.
Weblogs that provide information on obscure topics can never have a sizeable audience because the topic is of limited interest. So, if you're going to start a blog of your own, make sure that your content area is broad enough to appeal to a large audience.
2. Content that's timely. The best way to keep your blog readers interested is with timely content. Your blog should cover current events, opinions, and topics. Popular weblogs often comment on current events tied to their particular subject area or industry. Not only is the content meaningful to blog readers, but it encourages them to interact with your blog posts by placing comments.
Timely content is anything that is of current interest. Your best sources for timely content include daily newspapers, magazines, Internet news sites, and industry journals. Be sure to choose timely content that can be discussed and debated. This improves the overall effectiveness of your blog posts.
3. Updated Daily. The blogs that attract the most readers are those addressing popular content areas, covering timely topics, and refreshed on a daily basis. If your weblog adds a new post everyday, then readers have a reason to return. Providing daily updates on a consistent basis helps users to develop the habit of visiting daily. Updated content builds a loyal following while encouraging word-of-mouth referrals about your posts.
4. Comments from Industry Experts. Nothing speaks with more authority than an interview with an expert. The most popular blogs integrate interviews, commentary, podcasts, and other posts that include an expert who offers their thoughts and opinions on a given topic or current event. This is an essential reason why so many people return to the most popular blogs over and over again.
If you're wondering how to recruit experts for your blog, than look to current best practices for blogging and Internet marketing, simply ask. Industry experts are always looking to share their ideas. If you can't arrange for an in-person or phone interview, email the expert a list of questions and ask for their responses.
5. Use Interactive Media and Visuals. It's difficult for blog readers to read flat, boring text day in and day out, regardless of how stimulating a topic may be. The most popular bloggers know this and have enhanced their blogs with audio, video, external links, screenshots, and more.
The best way to improve the overall popularity of your blog is to present blog content in a variety of formats. Visit other blogs and determine what type of interactivity would work best for your blog. You don't need to go overboard, just add interactive content where it makes sense to do so.
By following the lead of today's most popular blogs, your blog can thrive. Follow the blog secrets listed above for enhancing your blog and improving readership. The key is to plan your blogging activities carefully and encourage interaction with your readers. This enhances the overall effectiveness of your blog and makes for a truly great blogging experience for everyone. Happy Blogging!
Michael Fleischner is a marketing expert and the president of MarketingScoop.com. He also hosts a marketing blog that provides the latest commentary on the world of marketing. He has more than 12 years of marketing experience and had appeared on The TODAY Show, Bloomberg Radio, and other major media. Visit MarketingScoop.com to learn more.

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