Friday, April 15, 2011

A Blog about Writing Blogs

Lately, many students have been coming into the WVU Writing Center interested in receiving help in developing their blogs, whether for a class or personally. As tutors, we have been working with these students, coming up with ideas for posts or figuring out the blog's format. But what really makes a good blog? Here are some tips to help your blog achieve web stardom:

Attracting Readers: The most important part of a blog is what you have to say. The content of your blog will attract a certain audience who will return and read your posts if they are interested and enjoy the material. Make sure you avoid using jargon or terms that your audience will not be able to understand. You do not have to flaunt your smarts on your blog, but include intelligible content that your readers will relate to and learn from as well. Keeping your blog posts simple will keep your readers engaged!

Using Keywords: When you are writing your blog, make sure you use keywords! These will link to search engines and people will be able to discover your work from Google to Bing. This will also be useful if you have ads on your blog and are trying to make some money off of readers' clicks. Be careful about your use of keywords though! Do not fill your posts with keywords, rather place them in here or there when relevant.

Creating an Eye-catching Format: If your blog is filled with long blocks of text with little breaks, your readers may become bored and lose interest. Using headings, bullet points, and short paragraphs will make your blog easier to follow and enticing. Also, using a layout that is colorful or has images that relate to your blog's content is important in making your blog stand out from the millions of others online.

Incorporating Pictures: Placing pictures into your blog is also very important. For example, if your blog is about baking and you are writing out the steps of a recipe, using a picture to demonstrate the directions can be very helpful for readers. Pictures help put what you are writing into context, but make sure that they are your own or that you have permission to use them!

Looking at Feedback: When your readers post comments on your entries, take time to read their ideas. Sometimes your readers may have suggestions that could possibly improve your blog. Paying attention to your audience's wants and needs is very important!

By investing time into mastering your blog's writing style and content, your blog's readership will increase every day. Blogging can be a lot of fun and rewarding as well! If you use these helpful hints, maybe one day your blog will be almost as awesome as ours! :)

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