What is a Blog?
"Blog" = A blog (a portmanteau of the term "web log") is a type of website or part of a website. Blogs are usually maintained by an individual with regular entries of commentary, descriptions of events, or other material such as graphics or video. Entries are commonly displayed in reverse-chronological order. "Blog" can also be used as a verb, meaning to maintain or add content to a blog. (http://www.wikipedia.org)
In other words, a blog can be anything where one or more people share their ideas related or not to a specific topic. It's like a journal open to the world that allows the visitors or readers to interact with the content by adding their comments, suggestions, and own ideas. Usually the blogger is more than a writer. A writer publishes a book or a story and then only limited interaction exists between the writer and the readers.
Bloggers are social creatures. They create and maintain their blog, they post new entries trying to stimulate and engage the readers. Bloggers usually take care of the look-and-feel of their blog and take pride in making the blog look as appealing as it can be. But, at the end of the day, the question still remains. Why blog?
This question was asked many times and many intelligent people shared their views. They all have their own perspective and they all make sense, but ultimately they are all relative. So, my post here will not try to give you an answer to that question. More importantly it will not attempt to even address the question "how do I blog better?" That's because, you cannot possibly know how to do something better, before you know why you are doing it...
What this post will try to do is give you a list of highly recommended resources, what I consider the absolute "must-read" of all people whether they do blog or simply think about blogging in the future. These resources will allow you to get a better understanding of what blogging is all about and how does it apply to you personally. I will also try to point out some specific blog posts which I believe are highly important and should be read first...
Resources for Better Blogging
ProBlogger is a blog written and maintained by Darren Rowse. Since 2002, Darren set on a quest to help other bloggers improve their blog writing skills through insightful articles, books, speeches and other projects. ProBlogger appeals to beginners as well as veteran bloggers. With a very wide variety of articles ranging from topics like pure writing skills up to advanced monetizing techniques for bloggers, ProBlogger is a must-read for any blogger out there. The author is extremely prolific with at least one new blog post every day and his writing skill is very engaging and concise. This is one RSS Feed you don't want to miss!
Copyblogger is a blog written by Brian Clark and it's probably one of the most influential blogs out there. As a successful entrepreneur, marketer and writer, Brian launched Copyblogger in 2006 and ever since then it grew in popularity to become one of the main sources of inspiration for many bloggers to be. The blog deals with various aspects of blogging, marketing and social media; it touches quite a bit on search engine optimization and other optimization techniques that will help your blog get noticed. Quite prolific as well, with one article almost every day, Copyblogger will help you get traffic, attract links, get subscribers and sell your stuff!
SourceBlogger, another great resource for any blogger, is written by Jeffrey Baril and has been around for quite some time. Just like the previous two authors, Jeffrey had a vision to create a community and help other people improve their blogging skills and the results from their blogging activity. Even though he is not a full-time blogger, the blog is updated very often and most of the articles deal with very specific topics on blogging. I really enjoy reading this blog, it has a very good flow to it and the articles are very detailed and easy to understand.
Daniel Scocco created DailyBloggingTips as one of the many web projects has was involved in since the beginning of the 2000s. The blog got a lot of awards and nominations and slowly became a vital resource for any serious blogger. I especially like the way that the articles are broken down in categories like blog design, blog basics, and so on. There are so many articles in the archive to keep you busy for quite some time, if you never read it before.
If I have to summarize Seth Godin in one simple sentence, it would be: "Seth Godin is a marketing God." He truly is. And his blog is probably the most popular marketing blog out there. Speeches, books, news appearances - Seth seems to be everywhere. And yet, he still takes the time to write in his great blog. His posts are not as long or tutorial-like as the other mentioned above. But they contain great ideas concentrated in sharp paragraphs and delivered in magnificent style. Sometimes I find myself reading each post three times in a row, just to let those ideas sip deeper into my brain. I highly recommend this blog to anyone who really wants to take a blog to the next level - with the "next" level being greatness.
I never met Chris Brogan. I don't know him and most likely I will never meet him. However, he is really one of my favorite people. He is smart, cool, and willing to share his knowledge with the rest of the world - which is exactly what he does in his blog. He is a veteran in social media marketing and anything to do with online marketing and promotion. His blog goes back to 2004 and the amount of articles posted over time is just overwhelming. Perhaps you should start with his "Best Of" link that shows his favorite posts. They deal with topics on blogging, social media marketing, writing and much more. Make sure to add this blog to your reader, you will not regret it!
BloggingTips is maintained by a group of writers, rather than just one writer as the other blogs presented above. However, their focus and their drive to help other bloggers is just as strong. They have a good guide for beginners and tons of posts dealing with topics good for advanced and novice bloggers. There's also a community forum on the site where bloggers share ideas and learn from each other.
Important Blog Posts You Should Read:
You need to make sacrifices to make it as a blogger
My best advice about blogging
Spending Money to make/(lose) money
18 Blogging Tips to Help You Succeed in 2010
Tips for the new blogger: Saving Money
The 8 Habits of Highly Effective Bloggers
10 Foundational Tips for Bloggers Wanting to Make Money Blogging
I hope you found this this information useful!
What other blog related resources do you know?