After blogging for a few years, I thought I’d reveal the secrets of social media. Yes, there might be some who vilify me, but this is all in the name of transparency.
And without further ado, this is my anatomy of a blog post.
The Thinking Stage
It’s been awhile since you blogged. The key to blogging is to blog regularly. Once a month doesn’t count.
But what to write? You don’t want to write anything too personal, because you’re family will start to shun you (and friends will clam up like, well, clams).
Some things are just too egotistical. Blogging is perhaps some evidence of a narcissistic personality, but there is a line that must be drawn.
Mull over other things. You have to be a professional when you go to work. You don’t want the higher ups to think you’re incompetent (that’s a secret you want to keep!)
Find some random subject that may or may not have a readership out there on the interweb.
The Writing Stage
Begin guzzling coffee. Wrench your hand out from underneath your cat’s paws and commence typing. Tick, tick, click, click. Cat bats at your arm because you’re not brushing him. Pat him on head. Drink more coffee. Type.
Disobey EVERYTHING you’ve been taught about writing including:
- never ever writing in capital letters
- never ever using italics for emphasis
- never ever going to town on exclamation marks!
- never ever using weird combinations like never ever
- proper grammar
- never using slang or clichés
- formulating your thoughts into well-crafted paragraphs with a topic sentence
Take a moment or two to puzzle through who your audience might be. What kind of language approach do you use? Do you talk as though you know what you’re doing? Or go for a folksy feel?
The Media Stage
Scour internet for non-copyrighted pictures that won’t get you sued.
Flip through digital photos for something (anything!) to illustrate your point, no matter how tenuous a link it is.
Resort to Wikipedia for pictures because most are in the public domain.
Credit Wikipedia for picture.
Try to think of witty caption. After a few minutes, give up and try to write whatever fits.
The Editing Stage
Read through blog post. Miss half the spelling errors because your slang is flagged, your bad grammar is flagged, and you just can’t be bothered to read all those underlined words. If there’s a mistake, someone will pint it out. Someone else always pints it out.
Add a few more things you think clever.
The Tagging Stage
Type as many tags as you see fit so that people can find your post. Use American and Canadian spellings so you don’t leave anyone out.
Be sure to tag any celebrity mentions; you never know what will get a hit in Google.
See misspelling in tag. Retype.
The Promotional Stage
Make sure to put new posts on Facebook and Twitter and any other social media site you have. It may cost you some friends who are tired of so many frigging status updates, but they aren’t your real friends anyway.
Realize that most people who come to your blog are people who have you on other social media sites (except for those looking for diapered women!)
The Anal-Retentive Stage
Keep checking your WordPress stats to see if anyone has read your page. Obsess over your monthly counts.
Read through spam comments which are written in barely passable Engrish. Feel sad that Viagaraxj546 isn’t a real friend.