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Blogging for Change (2) – Rejection to Attention

200608202135This is the second part of a 6 part series on blogging that brings about lasting change. Read the introduction here.

Stage 1 – Rejection to Attention

The first task of the blogger wanting to have a lasting influence on readers is to get their attention.

In today’s world the average person is bombarded with thousands of competing messages daily. As a result most people have pretty good internal filtering systems (or crap detectors) to help sift out the junk and find the worthwhile. In a sense most of your potential readers will be in some state of rejection to your blog whether consciously or subconsciously. If you don’t work hard to make your post attention grabbing you will not earn the right to say anything that will bring about change.

Keep this in mind as you blog. Put yourself in your reader’s shoes – What would grab your attention when it comes to the topic you are writing about? What would make you want to read more?

Titles and first sentences are important attention grabbers. They act as mini advertisements for your post on the front page of your blog, in search engines and news aggregators. Keep them simple, punchy, informative and get to the point.

Don’t fall for the temptation to trick your readers just for the sake of getting their attention. A title like Sex Tips on a post about your pet rabbit might get attention of your readers but it will not keep it – in fact it is likely to deepen their sense of rejection to your blog.

Some other things to try to gain attention in your title or first sentence or two might be to:

- Be a little controversial (be careful with this – don’t just be controversial for the sake of it unless you are willing to deal with the consequences)
- say something puzzling (but don’t keep your reader in the dark too long or you’ll frustrate them)
- make a claim (tell your reader the answer to a question that they might have)
- talk in terms that your potential readers will relate to (don’t be arrogant – be personable – be relatable)
- use humour (if you make someone smile or laugh you are part way through their filtering system).
- ask a question that draws your reader into your post and makes them want to respond
- intrigue your reader – tempt them by dangling something that will somehow draw them into your world.

Lastly make your entry Scannable and easy to read. If your entry looks like hard work to read you are unlikely to get many readers attention.

Work hard at getting the attention of your reader and you’ll be one step closer to having some lasting impact upon them.

The steps in this process are:

1. Rejection to Attention
2. Indifference to Interest
3. Skepticism to Conviction
4. Procrastination to Desire
5. Fear to Commitment

Blogging for Change

200608202136
Why do Bloggers Blog?

Is there some underlying thread of motivation that we all share?

This is the introduction for a 6 part series on how to blog in a way that brings lasting change.

Each blogger writes for their own unique set of reasons and motivations. Some do so as a hobby, others to express their creativity, many to share their views, some as a therapeutic way of getting things off their chest and a few as a means of income. The combinations of reasons for blogging will be as many as their are bloggers. In my opinion this is good – as humans we are each unique and blogging should and does reflect this.

One of the underlying motivations of many (if not most) bloggers have is that they want to bring about change.

Perhaps a slightly different way of putting it is to say that we seek to have ‘influence’ through blogging. As I reflect upon this I suspect that it is a common thread of motivation that runs through most blogging genres. Lets consider a few:
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How Blogs Work

How Blogs Work in 7 Easy Pieces is a great little piece that explains in easily understood language the steps of blogging and RSS. It even has pictures!

Blog Tip – Blog/RSS Promotion

So you’ve got a blog, it is looking good, the design is working and your content is stimulating – now you’d like to spread the word on what you have to offer, after all blogs are designed to be read! How should you get the word out?

Well you’ve probably already read my Blog Tips series (there is 45 tips listed there) – especially the Finding Readers mini series.

Your next port of call should be RSS Top55 – Best Blog Directory And RSS Submission Sites. This article has 55 (actually they are now 64) places where you can submit your blog’s URL and RSS feed. They range from search engine’s to blog specific engines, to blog directories, to blog review sites. It is the best collection of resources I’ve seen collated in the one place to date. Note that you’ll have to have an RSS feed for most of them to be of any use to you – if you don’t know about RSS check out this article on RSS for a great introduction.

To submit to all of them will take you an hour or so, but in my experience the key to being read is to try a multi-pronged approach – this approach has 64 approaches so it might be an hour well spent. RSS won’t guarantee you huge hits, but its an increasingly important part in the puzzle to having your thoughts read by others.

10 Ways To Make Money Blogging





10 Ways To Make Money Blogging is an article written by a blogger who is making a bit of money on the side of his hobby. Whilst I probably don’t see eye to on a political spectrum with John, he does speak some sense when it comes to blogging. His writing reminds me of my own post on Blogging for Dollars

John takes a look at a variety of methods that people use to make a dollar through blogs – here is his headings (you’ll have to head over to Right Wing News to get the meaty bits.

  • Amazon
  • Banner Ads
  • Blog Ads
  • Button Ads
  • Donations
  • Charging for Content
  • Freelancing
  • Fundraisers
  • Popups/Popunders
  • Text Ads

How to be a Top Blogger

John Robb posts about how to build a hot/popular weblog. His suggestions of different approaches make some sense. Basically he breaks it down into a number of approaches you might take to become popular.

- Connection machine
- Name dropper
- Ideologue
- Thinker
- Topic Owner
- Voice of outrage/affirmation
- Cool Hunter

You’ll have to head to John’s to get explanations on each.

Blog Promotion 101

Tristam from Blogopoly has posted an interesting post entitled Blog Promotion 101. His headings are: (there is more information linked to each)

1) Make your Site Visible to Search Engines
2) Exchange Links with Other Bloggers
3) Create an RSS Feed
4) Promote your Blog amongst your own Friends and Contacts
5) Join a Webring and/or text ad network
6) Guest Blogging
7) Get your Users to talk to each other and you by enabling Comments
8) Check your Visitor log to find other Bloggers to exchange Links or Guest Blogging requests with
9) Find out who is linking to other similar Blogs to yours to find more sites to exchange Links or Guest Blogging requests with
10) Use Trackback and enable on your Blog if Possible

Some useful blog promotion tips there.

How to Write Better Blogs

Dennis A. Mahoney writes a great article entitled How to Write Better that picks up a number of things that he believes bloggers need to be encouraged to do. It focuses mainly on writing. His headings are:

- Professional vs. Amateur
- The Rules
- Offer Something New
- Amuse your Readers
- Beyond Wired
- Successful Weblogging

There are some great things there to keep in mind for any blogger whether experienced or just starting out.

More Accessible Blogs

30 Days to a More Accessible Blog is a great series of posts that really will help bloggers make their blogs more accessible to those that may not be able to use many of our blogs. I’ll let the author of the series explain (from his introduction to the series):
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