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Is a Blog Right For Your Business?


Lemmings are cute, but dumb. If you tell them to jump off a cliff, they will. Just like the people who start blogs because everyone is doing it. Guess what happens after a little while? The blogs die.

In managing a list of many Web sites, most of which are blogs, I deleted countless sites from the list because the sites and blogs no longer existed. The people ran out of steam or had no reason to start them in the first place.

How do you know when a blog is right for your business? Learn why people start blogs, how they find their niche and how blogging tools can be used for more than blogs.

Some people like to read blogs, others like to read newsletters, still others like to rely on feeds and some read a few or all of them. No matter the method the information is distributed, each medium has one thing in common: content. Having a blog connects your newsletter and your business with all of these readers and delivers important content in a particular style.

I've been blogging since June 2000. If you review my early blog entries in meryl's notes, you'll notice they're more personal. When blogs first hit the scene in the late '90s, they were personal diaries and journals. Like the blog business, my blog has transformed from personal to business speak, although I still add personal notes here and there.

A few bloggers tend to talk about their work, their products and their little world. That might work for celebrities where fans want to know everything about them, but it doesn't work for the average business person. Other business people want information on how to succeed and when a blog spends time hawking products offering information of no value, few people will return. The people whose products sell well are the ones who provide valuable information. Readers already know what kind of information they're getting, so they trust that when they buy something, it will be of the same or better quality. This value must be reflected in their blog. It's much like people who only sign up for a newsletter after first seeing an example.

No one wants to be a lemming (I would hope). How do you decide whether or not to set up a blog? The answer isn't black or white (what did you expect?). Ask these questions:

The big decider is whether or not you can write in the blog almost daily. The people behind the high traffic blogs post multiple times a day. Though resourceful, merely linking to other sites doesn't give visitors much reason to make the effort to come to yours. Reading other blogs or feeds is a great way to learn how to carry a discussion. Find other blogs covering topics similar to yours and check them out. Disagree with their opinions? Write about it and explain your reasons. Cross-blog discussions are common, and that's where trackback comes in handy.

Trackback is a blog feature. If you decide to comment on another blog posting in your blog instead of in that blog's comments page, then you link to the conversation through the trackback link. Trackback is similar to the permalink, the permanent URL for the blog entry, but it has a different URL for copying and pasting in your blog's trackback box.

Aside from the technical aspects of operating a blog on a daily basis, subscriber list size and Web site traffic are good indicators of what kind of reaction you'll get when opening a blog. Starting from scratch with little traffic means you have a long road ahead and lots of work to do. There is no magic formula anyone can sell you for $97 to make your blog an overnight success. But with some perseverance and ingenuity, your blog can engage many prospects and clients.

Considering there are numerous blogs out there, pick a niche topic when starting a blog for a better shot at attracting and keeping an audience. meryl's notes focuses on three areas: webby, geeky and wordy. In reality, this is too much. What I need to do for my readers is create three separate blog entry points, so those interested in writing, newsletters and Internet marketing get nothing but the wordy entries. Those interested in Web design get the webby stuff and the technophiles receive the geeky content.

I also manage a personal blog separate from meryl's notes. It's about cochlear implants and deafness. This could fall under the geeky category, but it's a personal blog and doesn't belong in meryl's notes. This blog is written for a different audience.

The blogging tools for both of my blogs come with syndication capabilities so those using feed readers or aggregators can read the content through the software. When sending a new issue of a newsletter, comment on it or link to it in the blog, that way the blog and feed readers will get the goods, so all three bases are covered.

Blogging tools aren't just for, well, blogging. Such tools are an excellent way to help you update your Web site more often than you otherwise would. I use it to manage the list of tableless Web sites. Using blogging tools is much easier than the way I managed it before, updating the HTML files by hand. Though using a blog tool, it isn't a blog. In this case, the blog tool has become a content management system (CMS).

Small business owners don't have a need for the fancy and pricey CMSes out there. They find it easier to use blogging software to manage their sites or hire someone to adapt the tool for their site.

Blogs have found a place in businesses and people are finding creative ways to use them. Some companies have a blog on the intranet for communicating project status, jeopardies and metrics. They're used for knowledge management. With information pouring in, blog tools provide a way to share, organize and process the information.

Being a follower can be good or bad. No one wants to walk off a cliff with the lemmings, but everyone wants to succeed. Best practices won't help, since the decision to blog is based on the organization's mission, needs and goals along with its target market's desires and needs. A blog about lemmings? There is one, sort of. Or maybe you'd like to start your own and talk about dumb business moves.

Meryl K. Evans is the Content Maven behind meryl.net who increases conversion rates by writing and editing content so organization can focus on their core business. She is the editor-in-chief of the eNewsletter Journal and Shavlik's The Remediator Security Digest. Visit her Web site at http://www.meryl.net/blog/.


TODAYS NEWS BY OFFICEJAX FREE ADVERTISING AND AD EXCHANGE SOLUTIONSMORE RESOURCES updated Thu. December / 12 / 2019

A Farewell to Feministing and the Heyday of Feminist Blogging - The New York Times
A Farewell to Feministing and the Heyday of Feminist Blogging  The New York Times

What Happened to Tagging? - JSTOR Daily
What Happened to Tagging?  JSTOR Daily

Why you should start a podcast soon - Quartz
Why you should start a podcast soon  Quartz

Expired viagra - Side effects of expired viagra - Best place to buy viagra online reddit - Laughlin Entertainer
Expired viagra - Side effects of expired viagra - Best place to buy viagra online reddit  Laughlin Entertainer

Brand levitra - Brand levitra online - Bayer brand levitra online - Laughlin Entertainer
Brand levitra - Brand levitra online - Bayer brand levitra online  Laughlin Entertainer

Antabuse disulfiram test procedure - Does antabuse work - Antabuse implant cost uk - Laughlin Entertainer
Antabuse disulfiram test procedure - Does antabuse work - Antabuse implant cost uk  Laughlin Entertainer

Happy 25th year, blogging. You’ve grown up, but social media is still having a brawl - The Guardian
Happy 25th year, blogging. You’ve grown up, but social media is still having a brawl  The Guardian

Farewell to the blog - Politico
Farewell to the blog  Politico

Viagra capsules - Viagra capsules online in india - Laughlin Entertainer
Viagra capsules - Viagra capsules online in india  Laughlin Entertainer

The Rise and Demise of RSS - Motherboard
The Rise and Demise of RSS  Motherboard

What Is an RSS Feed? (+ How to Get Started) - G2
What Is an RSS Feed? (+ How to Get Started)  G2

WordPress vs. Wix: What's the Best Website Platform for Manufacturers? - ThomasNet News
WordPress vs. Wix: What's the Best Website Platform for Manufacturers?  ThomasNet News

As Microsoft moves more blogs off its MSDN and TechNet sites, here's how to stay current - ZDNet
As Microsoft moves more blogs off its MSDN and TechNet sites, here's how to stay current  ZDNet

Track RSS Feeds (Yes RSS) with Feedly - The Chronicle of Higher Education
Track RSS Feeds (Yes RSS) with Feedly  The Chronicle of Higher Education

A checklist: 5 steps toward better blogging | 2019-08-31 - grbj.com
A checklist: 5 steps toward better blogging | 2019-08-31  grbj.com

Could Blogging Boost Your Ecommerce SEO? - Practical Ecommerce
Could Blogging Boost Your Ecommerce SEO?  Practical Ecommerce

The how and the why of law blogs - ABA Journal
The how and the why of law blogs  ABA Journal

The RSS sutras for the twenty-first century - Economic Times
The RSS sutras for the twenty-first century  Economic Times

Brandon Sheffield's Blog - Dreamcast 20th anniversary interview extravaganza - Gamasutra
Brandon Sheffield's Blog - Dreamcast 20th anniversary interview extravaganza  Gamasutra

'Hindutva is not divisive, not anti-Muslim … RSS will abide by the Supreme Court judgment on Ayodhya' - Economic Times
'Hindutva is not divisive, not anti-Muslim … RSS will abide by the Supreme Court judgment on Ayodhya'  Economic Times

Changes to Google Play's average ratings: what to expect and how to prepare - Gamasutra
Changes to Google Play's average ratings: what to expect and how to prepare  Gamasutra

Wanted: An enemy for RSS to help BJP grow in Tamil Nadu - Economic Times
Wanted: An enemy for RSS to help BJP grow in Tamil Nadu  Economic Times

Growing Your Blog Using Email Marketing - Business 2 Community
Growing Your Blog Using Email Marketing  Business 2 Community

Blogging In 2019: How To Start A Successful Musician Blog - hypebot.com
Blogging In 2019: How To Start A Successful Musician Blog  hypebot.com

Attorney-Discipline Blogger Is Target of Defamation Suit - Law.com
Attorney-Discipline Blogger Is Target of Defamation Suit  Law.com

How to Get the Most Out of Discord - Gamasutra
How to Get the Most Out of Discord  Gamasutra

Meet the New Blogger: Meghna Datta - Duke Today
Meet the New Blogger: Meghna Datta  Duke Today

“The Linux of social media”—How LiveJournal pioneered (then lost) blogging - Ars Technica
“The Linux of social media”—How LiveJournal pioneered (then lost) blogging  Ars Technica

17 Non-Negotiable Skills for Blog Writers in Any Business - Search Engine Journal
17 Non-Negotiable Skills for Blog Writers in Any Business  Search Engine Journal

9 Ways to Evaluate Guest Posting & Blog Outreach Services - Search Engine Journal
9 Ways to Evaluate Guest Posting & Blog Outreach Services  Search Engine Journal

The 10 Most Important SEO Strategies For Your WordPress Blog in 2019 - Forbes
The 10 Most Important SEO Strategies For Your WordPress Blog in 2019  Forbes

Reform suggestions for Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh - Economic Times
Reform suggestions for Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh  Economic Times

Ruben Torres Bonet's Blog - Unity UI: The Guru's UI Development Diagram - Gamasutra
Ruben Torres Bonet's Blog - Unity UI: The Guru's UI Development Diagram  Gamasutra

Mohan Bhagwat, 6 Other RSS Functionaries Join Twitter - Outlook India
Mohan Bhagwat, 6 Other RSS Functionaries Join Twitter  Outlook India

RSS Feeds and How To Burn Them - Business 2 Community
RSS Feeds and How To Burn Them  Business 2 Community

Josh Bycer's Blog - Pursuing Playability Part 1 -- Quality of Life - Gamasutra
Josh Bycer's Blog - Pursuing Playability Part 1 -- Quality of Life  Gamasutra

My RSS feeds from a decade ago, a snapshot of gadget blogging when that was a thing - Boing Boing
My RSS feeds from a decade ago, a snapshot of gadget blogging when that was a thing  Boing Boing

Damien Yoccoz's Blog - How To Write A Kickass Game Description - Gamasutra
Damien Yoccoz's Blog - How To Write A Kickass Game Description  Gamasutra

9 Places to Share Your Blog Feed to Automatically Update Your Social Media Contacts - Search Engine Journal
9 Places to Share Your Blog Feed to Automatically Update Your Social Media Contacts  Search Engine Journal

Nathan Savant's Blog - Region-Based Narrative - Gamasutra
Nathan Savant's Blog - Region-Based Narrative  Gamasutra

Bob Whitaker's Blog - NASA Historian considers Kerbal Space Program - Gamasutra
Bob Whitaker's Blog - NASA Historian considers Kerbal Space Program  Gamasutra

How to Use Guest Blogging for Natural Link Building - Search Engine Journal
How to Use Guest Blogging for Natural Link Building  Search Engine Journal

Scientific American Blogs Reminded People They Still Exist - By Scaremongering Vegetables And Promoting Supplements - Science 2.0
Scientific American Blogs Reminded People They Still Exist - By Scaremongering Vegetables And Promoting Supplements  Science 2.0

Josh Bycer's Blog - The Problem of the Indie Game Pedestal - Gamasutra
Josh Bycer's Blog - The Problem of the Indie Game Pedestal  Gamasutra

'Ideology of socialism is not different from ideology of the RSS … People have reposed faith in BJP leadership' - Economic Times
'Ideology of socialism is not different from ideology of the RSS … People have reposed faith in BJP leadership'  Economic Times

The simple most difficult challenge of bringing Frostpunk to consoles - Gamasutra
The simple most difficult challenge of bringing Frostpunk to consoles  Gamasutra

Josh Bycer's Blog - The Reality of Game Development - Gamasutra
Josh Bycer's Blog - The Reality of Game Development  Gamasutra

'Mommy bloggers' study reveals factors that drive success in social influencer marketing - EurekAlert
'Mommy bloggers' study reveals factors that drive success in social influencer marketing  EurekAlert

Avoid These 5 Blog Strategy & Creation Mistakes - Search Engine Journal
Avoid These 5 Blog Strategy & Creation Mistakes  Search Engine Journal

Alex Pine's Blog - Methods of creating invisible tutorials - Gamasutra
Alex Pine's Blog - Methods of creating invisible tutorials  Gamasutra

Joris Dormans's Blog - Unexplored 2 Dev Blog: Tiles to Curves - Gamasutra
Joris Dormans's Blog - Unexplored 2 Dev Blog: Tiles to Curves  Gamasutra

Beto O’Rourke is blogging about the fog and blackberry cobbler. But is he running for president? - Washington Post
Beto O’Rourke is blogging about the fog and blackberry cobbler. But is he running for president?  Washington Post

Josh Ge's Blog - Rebranding Difficulty Modes - Gamasutra
Josh Ge's Blog - Rebranding Difficulty Modes  Gamasutra

Victoria Tran's Blog - Fashion in Games: Why It Matters - Gamasutra
Victoria Tran's Blog - Fashion in Games: Why It Matters  Gamasutra

Pascal Luban's Blog - Mario Kart Tour: Gameplay: 1 - Onboarding: 0 - Gamasutra
Pascal Luban's Blog - Mario Kart Tour: Gameplay: 1 - Onboarding: 0  Gamasutra

Victoria Tran's Blog - Designing Communities for Kindness - Gamasutra
Victoria Tran's Blog - Designing Communities for Kindness  Gamasutra

Ruben Torres Bonet's Blog - Unity Addressables: The Final Quiz Analysis - Gamasutra
Ruben Torres Bonet's Blog - Unity Addressables: The Final Quiz Analysis  Gamasutra

Herman Tulleken's Blog - Four Decades of Advergames - Gamasutra
Herman Tulleken's Blog - Four Decades of Advergames  Gamasutra

Why All Of Our Games Look Like Crap - Gamasutra
Why All Of Our Games Look Like Crap  Gamasutra

What is RSS? And Is It Still Important? - Small Business Trends
What is RSS? And Is It Still Important?  Small Business Trends

Get More Traffic Now: 5 Secrets of the Most Popular Blogs - Search Engine Journal
Get More Traffic Now: 5 Secrets of the Most Popular Blogs  Search Engine Journal

SEO Critique of 3 Ecommerce Blogs - Practical Ecommerce
SEO Critique of 3 Ecommerce Blogs  Practical Ecommerce

A 3D View of How We Got Here - Gamasutra
A 3D View of How We Got Here  Gamasutra

Tumblr once sold for $1.1 billion. The owner of WordPress just bought the site for a fraction of that. - Houston Chronicle
Tumblr once sold for $1.1 billion. The owner of WordPress just bought the site for a fraction of that.  Houston Chronicle

James Margaris's Blog - Why Artifact Failed - Gamasutra
James Margaris's Blog - Why Artifact Failed  Gamasutra

Evgeny Dyabin's Blog - Cascadeur: character's pose prediction using 6 points - Gamasutra
Evgeny Dyabin's Blog - Cascadeur: character's pose prediction using 6 points  Gamasutra

'Congress must not make the mistake of allowing the BJP to monopolise the nationalist narrative' - Economic Times
'Congress must not make the mistake of allowing the BJP to monopolise the nationalist narrative'  Economic Times

Blog or Podcast: What Best Helps the Entrepreneur? - Business 2 Community
Blog or Podcast: What Best Helps the Entrepreneur?  Business 2 Community

Furore over languages: National Education Policy is an excellent document which needs encouragement, not politics - Economic Times
Furore over languages: National Education Policy is an excellent document which needs encouragement, not politics  Economic Times

Fashion and travel blogger Alexandra Lapp, 44, credits age for her success - Fox News
Fashion and travel blogger Alexandra Lapp, 44, credits age for her success  Fox News

Josh Bycer's Blog - How Onboarding Should be Applied to Tutorials - Gamasutra
Josh Bycer's Blog - How Onboarding Should be Applied to Tutorials  Gamasutra

Security Bloggers Network - Security Boulevard
Security Bloggers Network  Security Boulevard

This full-time South Carolina blogger is owning the title of 'Black Southern Belle' - Charleston Post Courier
This full-time South Carolina blogger is owning the title of 'Black Southern Belle'  Charleston Post Courier

Indie Postmortem: Sydney Hunter and the Curse of the Mayan (2019) - Gamasutra
Indie Postmortem: Sydney Hunter and the Curse of the Mayan (2019)  Gamasutra

Uncommon Blogging Tactics Are Highly Effective, New Study Shows - Search Engine Journal
Uncommon Blogging Tactics Are Highly Effective, New Study Shows  Search Engine Journal

On surviving Yahoo Pipes, Feedburner futures, and the subscription web - Diginomica
On surviving Yahoo Pipes, Feedburner futures, and the subscription web  Diginomica

Why Gurumurthy and RSS need a worldview - Economic Times
Why Gurumurthy and RSS need a worldview  Economic Times

My Roblox Years: Dungeon Life and New Product Science - Gamasutra
My Roblox Years: Dungeon Life and New Product Science  Gamasutra

6 Reasons Your Ecommerce Site Needs a Blog Booster Shot - Search Engine Journal
6 Reasons Your Ecommerce Site Needs a Blog Booster Shot  Search Engine Journal

Jamin Smith's Blog - The Big Game Branding 101 - Gamasutra
Jamin Smith's Blog - The Big Game Branding 101  Gamasutra

Creature in the Well Development with Bohdon Sayre - Gamasutra
Creature in the Well Development with Bohdon Sayre  Gamasutra

Ricardo Cuello's Blog - Music for Video Games: The Plan - Gamasutra
Ricardo Cuello's Blog - Music for Video Games: The Plan  Gamasutra

Catherine Fox's Blog - Beyond A Steel Sky - Dev Diary #2 - Gamasutra
Catherine Fox's Blog - Beyond A Steel Sky - Dev Diary #2  Gamasutra

3 Strategies to Grow Gamers' Loyalty and Retention Rate - Gamasutra
3 Strategies to Grow Gamers' Loyalty and Retention Rate  Gamasutra

Inside the process of creating the score for Temtem: adaptive music. - Gamasutra
Inside the process of creating the score for Temtem: adaptive music.  Gamasutra

James Smith's Blog - Who's more popular: Mario or Brad Pitt? - Gamasutra
James Smith's Blog - Who's more popular: Mario or Brad Pitt?  Gamasutra

Louis McTague's Blog - The Importance of Definitions in Game Design - Gamasutra
Louis McTague's Blog - The Importance of Definitions in Game Design  Gamasutra

Want to Boost Your Game's ROI? Tap Into Your Community - Gamasutra
Want to Boost Your Game's ROI? Tap Into Your Community  Gamasutra

A Response to Cliffski's 10 Tips to 10X Your Indie Game Development Process - Gamasutra
A Response to Cliffski's 10 Tips to 10X Your Indie Game Development Process  Gamasutra

Damien Yoccoz's Blog - How Much Does Game Localization Cost? - Gamasutra
Damien Yoccoz's Blog - How Much Does Game Localization Cost?  Gamasutra

Brad Wardell's Blog - Living with Vulkan and DirectX 12 - Gamasutra
Brad Wardell's Blog - Living with Vulkan and DirectX 12  Gamasutra

Ahmed Khalifa's Blog - Level Design Patterns in 2D Games - Gamasutra
Ahmed Khalifa's Blog - Level Design Patterns in 2D Games  Gamasutra

A Few Simple Benefits of Using An RSS Feed - Business 2 Community
A Few Simple Benefits of Using An RSS Feed  Business 2 Community

Kibbles ‘n’ Bits 2/6/19: I have seen the Snappening and it is an RSS feed - Comics Beat
Kibbles ‘n’ Bits 2/6/19: I have seen the Snappening and it is an RSS feed  Comics Beat

Claire Sh's Blog - I don't hate social media... - Gamasutra
Claire Sh's Blog - I don't hate social media...  Gamasutra

Survey Reveals 56% of Bloggers Get Better Results by Spending 6 Hours on a Post - Small Business Trends
Survey Reveals 56% of Bloggers Get Better Results by Spending 6 Hours on a Post  Small Business Trends

Rohit Sharma: The art of scoring runs with laziness and effortlessness - Economic Times
Rohit Sharma: The art of scoring runs with laziness and effortlessness  Economic Times

97-year-old Seattle blogger shares honest view on aging - KING5.com
97-year-old Seattle blogger shares honest view on aging  KING5.com

Admiring the Game Design in Hyper-Casual Games - Gamasutra
Admiring the Game Design in Hyper-Casual Games  Gamasutra

Which are the most commonly used Game Engines? - Gamasutra
Which are the most commonly used Game Engines?  Gamasutra

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