What is a blog? Why blog? What does a blog look like? How does a blog work? These were the questions I had when a friend first introduced the WordPress blogging platform to me. Initially, my intention was to just create a website to showcase my design work. Having spent the past year learning about blogging, taking online courses and getting involved in online communities, I now understand the benefits of using a blog for my business.
For those of you who are not familiar with blogging, I thought I would share with you a basic introduction. Perhaps it will spark some ideas on how a blog could work for your business or organisation.
What is a blog?
Apparently, the word ‘blog’ was created from the words ‘web’ and ‘log’. I liken a blog to a notebook where you can log ones thoughts, ideas experiences and more, all in one place. Once you get familiar with the basics of a blogging platform, it is easy to use and share your news or thoughts with others.
There are many good reasons why you may want to start blogging. Here is a short list to get you started:
• To make yourself known
• Build a platform for your message
• Connect and build relationships with your readers
• Meet needs by answering questions to reader’s problems, pains and desires
• Become a go-to-person
• Collaborate with like-minded people
A blog theme is basically how you want your blog to look. Most blog themes are made up of 4 sections:
3/ Side bar
The header is comprised of your blog’s title or logo, if you have one, and your main navigation menu.
Menus link content and pages found on your blog e.g. Home, About, Services, Blog, Resources and Contact
Sidebars can include widgets and things you want to highlight like an email subscription option form.
The Footer links are for easy access to content that doesn’t change
The most important area is the Body. The main content area. Usually, this is the primary reason people have come to your blog. It’s where your ideas and thoughts are expressed. The content is created within a post or a page.
What is the difference between a page and a blog post?
A page is static and displays standard content, i.e. ‘About’ page. An About page may include who you are, your expertise, the readers problem and goal and how you can help.
A blog post is where you publish your thoughts. Posts can be shown on the ‘home’ page or ‘blog’ page of your blog. The most recent and relevant information shows at the top of the list. Things like your news updates, tips and ‘how-to’s, invitations to workshops etc. Once published you can post your blog posts to your favourite social media network.
Posts can include a comments section. You have the option to add a comments section at the bottom of a post so others can add there thoughts to yours. Its a great way to build relationships and get feedback on your blog.
Share your message and connect with your audience
Blogs make it easy to share photos, video and audio. Blogs can be viewed anywhere, any time from mobile devices. Anyone can blog. It is a great way to connect with others and get your message to a large audience!