LESSONS LEARNED: HOW TO BUILD A SUCCESSFUL BLOG
By looking at so many blogs, there are many lessons to be learned about blogging, particularly corporate blogging.
Blogs, even corporate ones, are personal. Bloggers put a lot of effort into their blogs, and many put their own personality into them. Most bloggers will be happy to correspond with you if you would like to talk about their blog. However, you must approach them in a personal manner, otherwise it could appear that you are just spamming them or attempting to get links to your own blog.
Leaving comments is part of the foundation for starting a blog community. Generally, there is a link below each post allowing someone to fill out a comment form. In the form, you can fill out your name, email address, website address, and comment. Comments are fundamental for all blogs for several reasons:
Trackbacks are also important. You can find a trackback link down at the bottom of a post, usually next to the permalink and comments link.
Trackbacking is a system that notifies a blogger that another blog has written an article about one of their blog posts. For instance, if you decide you wish to write a post about someone else's blog article, you would use a trackback. If you were writing a trackback article, you would go to original article and search for their article's trackback URL. You would then insert that trackback URL into your own blog management system trackback notification system. When the new article is saved with the trackback URL, a notification to the original blog will cause that blog's management system to insert a link to your post to appear on the other next to the original article. The blogger will also receive a notification usually by e-mail that someone blogged about their blog, and sent a trackback.
Some blogging systems do not support trackbacks, but most do. If your blog software does not support trackbacks, either have your developer implement a trackback function, or use a manual trackback. You can do a manual trackback here: http://www.forret.com/tools/trackback.asp
It is a great way to see what kinds of other blog posts your posts have inspired. Trackbacks are also an excellent way to start a community, find blogs to read, and get people to read your blog. They are often looked at differently than comments, and they have certain advantages over leaving comments. They are a non-intrusive way of letting a blogger know you are interested in what they have to say. You can interact and acknowledge interesting blog posts this way. Using trackbacks can be highly beneficial for the traffic you see on your blog.
Tags make it easy to navigate a blog and find what you're looking for. Tags are category names and people can select keywords for their posts. Usually you will see keyword names on the side navigation of a blog. If you click on one of the keywords, it will show you all of the blogs that are categorized under one of those "tags".
For example, a company writes posts that are usually about the following topics: customer service, product development, or industry news. If someone finds their blog and wants to read all of the articles about product development, tags will make this very easy.
Tagging is recommended, especially if you write about a variety of different things.
Mistakes Bloggers Make
While there are many terrific blogs around, there are also common but easily fixable, mistakes that bloggers tend to make.
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