Here's a bona fide treat for you, and a bonus BLOGGING CLASS post!
Here is the article I would have submitted to the Blog Engage contest, had I been able to meet the requirements for entering!
10 Ways to Blog Better
1 - Make 'em real; Make 'em feel
People who write about real life experiences and current events (like Xiaxue writing about Peter Coffin, for example) increase the odds of having any given blog post tweeted and repeated by about 33 per cent, according to a 2010 study of popular blogs.
When you craft your article, read it aloud before uploading it to your blog or better yet, read it to a friend or ask them to read it and see if they can "feel" your emotion coming through in your words...
2 - Give Your Blog 5 "Kicks"
You wrote a smashing post! Now, (a) tweet it (b) post it on facebook or linked-in (c) leave it as your URL in comments on a similar article on someone else's blog (d) ping it individually on pingler.com and (e) drop it on digg or reddit
3 - Don't Gum Up The Works
Strip your post of any surplus verbiage and don't link to other blogs or websites unless you bring them value and vice-versa
4 - Be Social and Interact
You know already that it is important to give your blog those 5 abovementioned "kicks" - now you also need to get out there and mention your greatest post to others! Tell a friend on myspace or Linked-In; tweet it to particular individual using twitter's "@" feature; mention it in an email to a colleague or add it to your email signature just for a day or two!
5 - Taste the Rainbow that is the Blogosphere
Need ideas? Hop on Global Voices or Drudge or Global Blog to see what everybody is buzzing about - each of these sites represents a snapshot of current events and pop culture!
6 - Keep Your Blog "Light"
Get rid of slow-loading widgets and those that might seek to re-direct your readers elsewhere. NOTHING IS MORE ANNOYING than those "SUBSCRIBE HERE" pageover pop-ups. There are about three blogs I actually tolerate seeing these on, only because I love the bloggers themselves (otherwise they'd be on by X list!) There are many services available that will check your web page load time. Find one you like and use it!
7 - Spread Linky-Love
People who write great articles should be rewarded! If you run across an article on another blog you really enjoy or find helpful, tell the whole wide world about it: on your blog, on twitter, on any social network, on digg! Even if the author has closed comments, he or she will notice that you have spread the word about a great article. They'll remeber you, sooner or later!
8 - Get Intimate
I again call your attention to Ms. Wendy Cheng. If you have a few hours, go back through the multitude of posts on the Xiaxue blog. Here's a gal who has become a superstar celebrity but shares the most intimate details with her readers. Note: I didn't say spill the beans or give up personal details. Just sahre a little intimacy through your posts!
9 - Finish What You've Started
I carry a little green notebook around. I know other bloggers who use cellphone voice memo recorders to capture ideas when they emrge. You just never know when you'll get inspired, so don't let the moment escape! WRITE IT DOWN! Even if it's on a piece of scrap paper or a paer napkin, a few small words could be the seed for what may become your greatest post!
10 - A Time to Sow, A Time to Reap
Don't subject yourself to "sleep deprivation" and the bad things that can happen as a result it (getting fat, heart disease, more likely to catch cold or flu) because you're spending too much time online. Do your thing, prepare your materials, post and share... then, like a great chef, let it all simmer awhile. Get your rest and spend the time you need to spend in "real" life. The "virtual life" will consume you if you let it... if you really wannabee 24/7 on the web, look into automating (i.e. time-released) blog posts and tweets! Heck, your internet persona can live on long after the material you is gone!
Tags: BlogEngage, BlogEngage Contest