Blogging: Helpful Hints and Tips

In case you haven’t noticed, I really enjoy writing.  If I didn’t then I wouldn’t blog, nor would I post so many stories on my photography facebook page. I also enjoy reading other blogs and the comments on them as it helps me learn about what goes on in different horse ranges and see the different ways people write. Since I do follow quite a few blogs, I thought it might be fun for me to compile a list of things that may or may not work for people when they blog.

1. Read before you write. Granted, a blog is about one’s own experiences, but sometimes research can save a blogger time. That way, if someone already wrote a good summary about the topic, the blogger can just provide a link to that source rather than going into detail about it themselves. Reading before you write also goes for people commenting on a post. I often find it helpful not only to read the post, but also scan the comments. With some of the more widely trafficked blogs and pages, it can be hard to read all of them, but it also means that the admin of that page or blog might not be as able to answer repeat questions if it’s already been answered, so often just searching for comments that have been responded by the blogger can be helpful.

2. Write to tell a story. This can sometimes be easier said than done if people are trying to make an objective point, but I’ve noticed that people have an easier time understanding statistics if they have context. Also, people who read blogs aren’t looking for a scholarly journal. While it’s true a large range of topics can be covered, usually blogs should be brief and to the point. If there’s more to the topic, more posts can be made, or maybe even there can be subtopics for a broader subject.

3. Know what your readers know. This is why it can be helpful to do more research. While it’s true some people may have extensive background in a topic it doesn’t mean everyone will. It’s a good idea to provide enough background for people new for the subject, but not so much that the people who know the subject well will stop reading.

4. This is something that’s pretty basic, and doesn’t take too much time, especially when spell check is used, but I’m often surprised about how many typos I see online. Most people don’t make a big deal about them, but if typos are made consistently it can sometimes be perceived that the blogger doesn’t care enough to double-check their work.

5. Use photos appropriately. While it’s true images are worth 1000 words, it might not give the reader the correct 1000 words.  For some subjects, adding a photo may not even be needed. Similarly, the captions for photos need to be added appropriately. They can help give the photo context and go into more depth about the experience.

A photo like this may not need too much context. Depending on the topic, it may not need to be included at all.

A photo like this may not need too much context. Depending on the topic, it may not need to be included at all.

If someone is unfamilier with wild horses they might think it is more dramatic than it really is. In reality, sparing is all about bravado. However, without the caption, they might not know that.

If someone is unfamiliar with wild horses they might think it is more dramatic than it really is. In reality, sparing is all about bravado. However, without the caption, they might not know that.

6. Keep spacing consistent. Sometimes spacing can be used to indicate a transition, but inconsistent spacing can confuse people. If there are larger spaces between ideas people might scroll down to fast or if a previous idea was relatively complete they might mistake the amount of spacing for the end of the post and they may not know to continue reading.

I know this is quite a bit different from my usual topic, but I hope people still find value in this post. In the off-chance some one starting a blog reads this, I hope it helps. Lastly, to people who have a lot more experience blogging than I do, what did I forget?

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3 Comments »

  1. Joy Said:

    Love this! I don’t think you forgot anything, but sometimes a sense of humor helps, too. 😉

    As a reader and then a person making comments, there is nothing more annoying to me than having someone making the same comment you do 5 minutes later — I don’t mean using the same single word (as in Great!), but as in sentences… yes, people! Read before you comment! What you have to say may not be as important as you think! 🙂

    • Thanks! I think the most entertaining comments for me are the people who ask a question, have it answered by the page admin, then ask the same question under the answer.

      • Joy Said:

        😀


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