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New to Blogs?

The blog world is a new adventure for many folks but they are not alone. Blogs have been around for years now. They became famous in politics, are widely used in personal interests and hobbies. (You wouldn’t believe how many blogs there are written by gardeners.) Blogs are now gaining acceptance among businesses who use them for commercial purposes.  The circle of use and influence is expanding rapidly.

I have been exploring the blogosphere (slang for available blogs on the Internet) related to the horticulture industry, gardening, business, and marketing. After a little exploration and some confusion about how it all works I set up this blog to try it out and to figure it out. (This is a good time to say that all the blogging slang adds to the confusion so I’m working hard to avoid it.) There is certainly a lot more to know, and plenty of bloggers to talk over my head about how it works, but now I am comfortable with my working and expanding knowledge of blogs. It’s time to run this flag all the way up the pole and get more serious about it.

My purpose of learning about blogs is primarily to understand this part of the new media that is coming out of the Internet so I can intelligently share that information with my clients and friends.There is so much to learn that I am not ready to say I am intelligent about blogs. However, I am ready to share what I have learned so far in order that it may help you to understand my blog and begin to learn more along with me. But why? See if you agree with the next paragraph.

Traditional advertising is struggling partially because a lot of it has become ineffective, or at least cost ineffective. To be fair, not all of the blame lies with the advertising media. The message must also be correct, and it must be distributed correctly. However, the fact remains that consumer habits are shifting away from passive observer activities and more toward active participation, which is why Word of Mouth marketing has become much  more important in the past several years. The Internet and particularly blogs and various forms of social media have the potential to spread word of mouth (either positive or negative) much faster and to a much greater degree than any form of communication ever available before.

That brings me to the point of offering a few suggestions as you become more familiar with blogs and how they work. So here are a few of the main points, which may help you find your way around.

  1. Blogs are interactive. This blog is set for open comments. There is some danger of negative or inappropriate comments being posted publicly. The general idea is to create an open atmosphere for comments so readers will be comfortable expressing their opinions and asking questions. When bloggers find out what people are thinking and where they are coming from it helps them to understand, and to clarify the intent and meaning of their postings.  At the bottom of each posting there is a comment link. If there are no previous comments the link reads “O Comments” on my blog. Just click that link and you’ll be brought to a screen where you can enter your comment. You’ll be asked for your email address, but that won’t be shown with your posting. You’ll also be asked for your name, but you can also choose to remain “Anonymous.”  Go ahead and click there and see. You can always back out if you have nothing to add to the posting.
  2. Blogs can be edited. Depending on the settings used by the blog owner they can edit their own postings, and any comments by others. Some blog owners choose to prevent comments, and some choose to approve comments before they appear. While these options are safer than allowing open comments, they also limit the sense of transparency, and in my opinion reduce the credibility of the blog owner.
  3. Blogs are free to use – to a point. While the setup and use of a blog may be free, always consider that there is a cost of time to write and manage the blog.. Free blogs are offered by the developers/owners to bring new people into blogging in hope that at some point they will need to have more features and storage capacity and upgrade to a paid level. Some functions of blogging may be supported by advertising. This blog is set up on WordPress, which was recommended to me by other experienced bloggers who had tried several types of blog systems and found it to be user friendly and full of useful features.
  4. Blogs are easy to set up. Easy is relative. If you try to do too much too fast you will find yourself wasting time and having to redo your work. I started a little too fast (like assemblying a toy before reading the directions) and found that I had to go back and view the tutorial and read instructions anyway, then I had to redo some of my work. Slow down.

I’m going to leave this blog lesson now so I don’t throw too much at the new users (often called newby’s) too fast. Blog information and training is readily available and can come at you like drinking water from a fire hose. However, you can control the valve. Slow down and take it one step at the time.

Now that I have this blog set up and functioning, I need your help to spread the word of it to your friends and associates. There are a several ways to do that. Let me suggest one easily available and relatively easy method. Just copy the paragraph below and paste it into a new email message to whomever you’d like to send our way. You can edit the words to your own liking after you paste into your email.

**********************************************************************************

Friend,

I have discovered a blog I think you would be interested in. Click here to see it.

Once you’re there subscribe to the email updates in the link at the top of the right column, or click here to subscribe to it.

I hope you agree that this is something you’re interested in.

Thanks,

Your Name

**********************************************************************************

I hope sincerely that this little bit of information is useful to you. If you have any questions, or anything to add please click on that “O Comments” link, or send an email to sid@horticulturaladvantage.com.

One Response

  1. I love garden blogging! The people are awesome and share anything you want to know about plants.

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