Understanding the Elusive Blog

Is it just us, or has the word blog become jargon in and of itself? For people who spend their time online, blogs may seem prevalent, yet for those who work in the world of healthcare, education, retail, finance and the like, a blog may seem like a foreign concept, a term used by the social media savvy who actually understand and use that equally mystifying concept known as Twitter.

Because it’s happened so many times I actually can’t count on both hands the number of times I’ve explained to someone that I’m a “freelance writer” who often times “blogs” for companies, organizations and individuals. “What’s that?” they frequently ask, eyebrows crinkled.

Blogging — and blogs — are a part of our modern times, so it’s about time we (especially considering that this is a tried and true blog!) clarified its definition for those of you who find yours to be too fuzzy for a clear understand to peek through.

A blog is a “web log.” That’s where the word was derived from at least, and it does help with the definition as well. A blog is a sort of online journal. In fact, in the early days of blogdom, people often created their own blogs to share stories of travel or adventure with friends and family who could gain free access to this person’s logging or journaling online.

Nowadays, many professional organizations, companies, reputable news sources and media outlets have blogs that are essentially trusted sources of information, videos and news tidbits. If a blog was being compared to literature, it would be known as the short story; blogs are intended as quick information sources with handy links, impressive photos or videos plugged into the mix of words.

Now that we have the definition down, we’ll give you a few quick and easy tips for improving your blog and its readership. Thanks to another blog we’ve discovered (White Hat Social Media), as well as our own insights and experiences in the blog-o-sphere, here are several easy blog improvement tips for you!

  • Keep your blog consistently updated with content. This will please your readers and search engines, making your blog more talked about and more easily found.
  • If you can link to an external site or source in your blog post, do it! This has the potential to increase your blog’s traffic. (For example: if you talk about a medical condition in a post, link to the definition of that condition on WebMD or some other reputable source.)
  • Don’t just snag photos from anywhere on the web and plug them into your blog — you could end up paying for it (literally). Instead use a photo resource such as Flickr and search for your desired image using the Creative Commons License search tool under the advanced search portion. This way you’ll find a photo that’s been approved by the photographer for second hand use. But even if you do this — give them credit! It’s much appreciated.

With that — we wish you happy web logging!

Photo Thanks To: Maria Reyes-McDavis

1 Comment

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s