When it comes to blogging, there is much more that goes into the actual creation, launch, writing and publishing pieces than one may think. Understanding and implementing the “best practices” in order to ensure appropriate form, function and substance is key to any successful blog. Those practices, in my opinion begin even before one sits down and begins writing. First establishing a “brand” for one’s blog is the primary purpose for establishing a blog in the first place. Using proper content and reaching target audiences is what enhances a blog’s longevity. The brand, according to DM Best Practices: Writing for the Web, is “your dialog with your customers” in which the content being displayed is “on-demand” (3).
The second best practice is described by DM Best Practices as the “who, what, where, when, why and how” (5). This simple concept, taught to students from Elementary School on, is often overlooked by writers when trying to convey particular ideas through new media. By not straying topics and remaining on the goal of the blog one can truly reach mass audiences with content that “sticks.”
The third best practice I deem significant for any successful blog is making it personal, yet informational. Having the personal aspect provides room for a connection with the audiences the blogger is aiming to reach while the informational piece narrows in on that connection and reminds readers why this blogger is credible to discuss the content and how one should then interpret that information after processing the blog. Ultimately, a blog should be personal and informational with an educational component mixed in between. According to Ilias Chelidonis (2014) a “successful blog is to create great content that teaches people something, optimize the content for search engines and distribute it via social media.”
The blog I chose meets the criteria for “best practices” I believe are essential for the determination of a successful blog. Kenzie Travers, “Editor of Business Monadnock, ELF (Enjoy Life to the Fullest) Magazine and special sections at The Keene Sentinel, food blogger” (Travers, 2015) of the New England region, blog “Yondering Foodie: A blog on food, adventure, and everything in between,” meets the three “best practices” chosen for this blog entry. Travers (2015) developed a brand through her passion for cooking, experiences abroad, and current profession. With this, the reader will already know the content they will be reading and the information they can then interpret for their own benefit. There is one concept per blog entry and Travers (2015) addresses each idea through a solid writing style, humor, and experience.
Travers (2015) meets the “who, what, where, when, why and how” aspect by taking her readers step by step through each cooking lesson, event she visited and people she met along the way. The organization from introduction to ending allows for easy following of the content and reader’s comparability.
Lastly, Travers (2015) addresses the personal and informational pieces by stating her credentials in the “about” section of her blog. Travers (2015) states she is a writer for her town’s newspaper and magazine, giving the reader an idea of why she can discuss the content she does through her published works, which she also includes on her home page.
My own blog, “wynotk,” does require more usage of the “best practices” outlined in this post. Although the informational aspect of each entry is consistent with the concepts being discussed, the lack of organization and “who, what, when, where, how” concept is lacking. By utilizing DM Best Practices: Writing for the Web, learning from Kenzie Travers, “Yondering Foodie,” I am able to seek how the best practices are used and what can be done to ensure I stay on track within each entry for my reader’s convenience.
With that, I do believe that as a blogger, a “Blogger’s Code of Conduct,” would be useful. There are numerous sites that aide individuals in the creating, launching and processing of their blogs, however the concept of a “Code of Conduct” for a blogging atmosphere creates guidelines that allows for readers to abide by the guidelines previously set in a blogging atmosphere. Blogs are personal and informational, with a “Code of Conduct” one can find it useful to avoid bias, inaccurate and misleading information. Although opinions are accepted in a blog, the “Code of Conduct” would allow for credible sources to write information that they want mass audiences to interpret.
The discussion on blogging this week brings to light the age of information overload in a new media world. With websites, applications, widgets and technology advancing every day, it is important one can intercept writing on the web and how to utilize the information being read responsibly and ethically.
Chelidonis, I. (2014). 12 Steps to Launch a Successful Blog. Retrieved November 16, 2015, from http://www.dailyblogtips.com/steps-to-successful-blog/
DM Best Practices: Writing for the Web. (1996). Retrieved November 16, 2015, from http://www.uakron.edu/webteam/docs/dm_webwriting.pdf
Travers, K. (2015). Yondering Foodie. A blog on food, adventure, and everything in between. Retrieved from http://yonderingfoodie com/