|Erin Shaw Street|
|Andre Natta will be one of the panelists featured in our
discussion on blogging and community journalism
set for Thursday, Jan. 10.
Long before I returned to my hometown of Birmimgham, Ala., in 2009 I was hearing talk about The Terminal. André Natta started this critically acclaimed web publication about Birmingham in 2007 and the site has since garnered him plenty of attention and respect in the Magic City and beyond.
I’d say they’d want to approach writing their posts with passion. They got to be willing to tell the truth and have the ability to connect dots most folks wouldn’t at first glance. Always be willing to question and to learn as much as possible.
What main piece of advice would you give to folks who want to use their blogs to tell important stories in their communities?
Be willing to do the research necessary to make sure no stone is left unturned. This includes reaching out to all sides of the story; there are normally more than two. Even if folks don’t reciprocate, you know you’ve done all you can to present as complete a piece as possible. Being thorough and transparent matters much more than being balanced and objective.
|super cute photo found here|
I’m not a fashion blogger, but I regularly read the Independent Fashion Bloggers website because it always features such great tips for bloggers of any niche.
31 Days to a Better Blog
- Carve out a new niche for yourself. Create the blog you wish existed!
- Create an editorial calendar and stick with it!
- Update your Twitter header.
- Write a mission statement for your blog.
- Revamp your About page (and include that new mission statement).
- Redesign your header.
- Take a photo that you will use on all your social networking sites and add the photo to your blog as an “About Me” graphic that links to your About page.
- If you’ve been thinking about changing your URL, title or platform, do it!
- Sign up for a blogging class or conference.
- Recommit to being more engaging on Facebook and Twitter.
- Dust off your LinkedIn profile. Believe it or not, I’ve had more people contact me about writing and social media gigs through LinkedIn than Facebook or Twitter.
- Update your Google profile.
- Learn how you can use Pinterest to boost your blog.
- Update your blogroll.
- Now recommit to leaving thoughtful comments on most of those sites in your blogroll.
- Cut ties with some of your tweeps to streamline you Twitter experience.
- Make commenting on your blog easier.
- Organize an event for bloggers in your area.
- Get connected with an online blogging community such as BlogHer, Skirt or IFB.
- Make a pitch to be featured on or to contribute to one of your favorite blogs.
- Make a pitch to be featured in local (or even national) media.
- Start a video post feature on a topic related to your niche.
- Post an interview with someone you admire. These posts generally bring lots of pageviews.
- Introduce yourself to important people in your niche.
- Blog about a controversial topic. These posts are shared over and over in cyberspace and are sure to bring you more traffic.
- Start an e-newsletter.
- Have a blog date. Go to your favorite coffee shop and blog for hours.
- Highlight your best blog posts.
- Cover a local event. These types of posts tend to be popular, too.
- Compile a post of all the lesssons you’ve learned about blogging thus far. Your readers who are also bloggers will appreciate it, and this will be a great post for you to refer back to when you feel you’ve lost your way.
- Create a list of great blog post ideas for 2013.