Tuesday, November 13, 2007

What is a helpful blog?

Today I planned to tell you about a couple of blogs/websites I visit regularly and how they help me as the owner of a writing business. I will still do that but first, I'd like us to talk about what makes a blog worth visiting. Because that is the most important step of this process.

I'd have to say first is regular new content.

We live in a microwave culture. We crave new information. Why else would we check email 17 times a day at work then twice at red lights on our cell? We always want to be the first to know anything. I did an experiment on my shoutlife page. For a few weeks I had my hubby spend two hours a day greeting friends of mine. Then I spent a few weeks not visiting anyone's blog and simply posting new content 4 times a week.

I found that my numbers jumped when I added new content but barely creeped up when I spent hours visiting all my friends. So content is key.

Know your audience

If you don't have content geared to your target audience even the readers you do have won't last long. My target audience is people who are serious about writing. Whether that is the aspiring author, multi-pubbed author, or the reader. I want to have content for each group. So Monday and Tuesday I teach, Wednesday Caitie does her book reviews, Thursday I have industry interviews. My doing this I can keep the amount of time required to maintain my blog manageable while providing new content to my readers. It is working because more and more of you are coming and staying.

In fact, some of you have even joined to have my blogs delivered to your email box. A great idea because it saves you time and will alert you to the special Christmas gift I'll be giving to my subscribers soon. If you'd like to subscribe now look to the right on my blog for the subscription box.

Be credible

Credibility is something I take VERY seriously which is why many times I won't tell you about something until I've done it myself and seen that it works. When I put my name on the line you are trusting me to have integrity. I respect that and do all I can to maintain that trust.

Now, having said that I'd like to direct you to a few blogs that I trust.

For those of you who don't know Chip...you're missing out. He is a witty, funny guy who knows the industry inside and out. I subscribe to his blog and learn something with every post. Today he added an interview with Steve Laube. Go over there right now and check it out. It will be well worth your time.

What can I say. Read this entire website. There is so much to learn from Randy Ingermanson my brain explodes at his genius. He is also extremely kind and humble. I spent time talking with him at ACFW's conference this past September and was impressed by his sincere desire to help other writers. He gives away far more content then he ever sells in his courses. And his courses are so far under-priced I feel I should give him a percentage of my royalties. [But I won't Randy, so don't email]

So how about you? Do any of you visit these blogs? Are there others that you visit often? Tell us about them.


carla stewart said...

I read both of these blogs. Also have found Mary DeMuth's, Lisa Samson's, and Novel Journey very helpful, sometimes challenging, and always encouraging. Thanks for the comment on my blog. Blogger hasn't been nice to me when I've tried to comment today =(
I signed up for blogrush and am anxious to see what happens.

Your Coach for the Journey, Tiffany said...

Great. I hope you'll have the kind of great success I've had...or better.

I love Mary's blog, Lisa's blog and NJ. Yes, those are must reads as well.

Thanks for the comment.

Randy said...

Hi Tiffany:

Thanks for mentioning my blog and web site. I really enjoyed talking with you at ACFW this fall!