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We’re all Born to Blog, here’s the proof

04.09.2013
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So you want to blog, huh? Where do you start?

You start with buying a book. Not just any book, but “Born to Blog: Building Your Blog for Personal and Business Success One Post at a Time“, by none other than Mark W. Schaefer and Stanford A. Smith.

Mark is the Chieftain for {grow} and Stanford writes Pushing Social. Both are successful and very active bloggers.., for them to write a book like this makes total sense. And further more.., when they write a, nay, the book on blogging.., you get a copy, read it and learn from it.

Now, I haven’t had the time to put anything into practice (I just read it, gimme a break will ya), but I’ve followed Mark’s blog for a while now (and followed its advice) and I can tell you.., it’s a hit. The content, the guest posts, the comments.., the community. It pulls the whole Internet just another notch up the curve.

I haven’t read Pushing Social as much (as I should), but I can tell you.., after reading Born to Blog.., Pushing Social moves snugly into my top 5 blogs to follow.

So.., about the book then…

Personality is a word that springs to mind. Obviously Mark and Stanford have their own (exhaustive) experience to rely on, and they share their story via personal anecdotes related to the topic at hand.

They also use other real world examples to drive the points home.

Yes, You Can Blog!

The authors start with convincing you that, yes, you too can blog. A nice start, it breaks the ice and persuades you to read the rest of the book.

After that, they move through the core elements of a good blog. From the need to tell a Story, to the importance of Dreaming.

Dreaming is mandatory for seeing the world as it should be rather than how it is
- Born to Blog

From Persuading, Teaching and Curation onto discovering your personal blogging skills, with a very handy quiz.

I found I lean towards teaching my dreams through storytelling. But maybe I should refine that a bit more…

The Corporate Blog

Ooohhh.., the scary issue of the infamous Business Blog. Mark and Stanford explain why this is a good idea. But, more importantly.., it guides you through the set-up process and the issues to take into consideration.

A short chapter…, but the content packs a punch.

Content and Readers

The story goes on (and on, there’s just so much useful information in there) describing different kinds of content and how to get (and keep) readers.

Also, Contributors are covered (in detail). Still focused on corporate, but if you scale it down, this is a applicable for a personal use too. Especially if you want to expand the contribution to your blog.

Making Money

There, the bottom line. The big subject.

Obviously, the flow of the chapters is well chosen. If you start with putting the focus on making money, you’ll neglect the basics…, the foundation. And guess what happens if you do, nothing. Nothing at all. Which is not what we want, because we want a whole lot of things to happen.

Then, keep going

Of course.., once you have everything in place, you worked hard to get where you are (you wrote a good blog post or two.., you want to stay there. Not everything might go as planned. But obstacles are there to overcome.., right?

The authors continue by helping you with setting up a personal blog and there is a whole chapter about Blogging Habits. This is a How-To chapter, full with personal anecdotes by the writers and “Take Action” paragraphs for us to.., well.., take action.

All in all

Born to Blog is an excellent book.

After reading Tao of Twitter and Return on Influence written by Mark, and Stanford’s reputation, my expectations were high.

Having read quite a lot about (corporate) blogging and having (very) moderate success with this blog I thought I knew a lot. Well.., I still think I know a lot.., but knowledge and wisdom are two very different things.

The wisdom in this book, the personal input (exposure) from the writers, the “take action” paragraphs and real worlds examples makes this a valuable addition to a bloggers library. Don’t miss out on this.

Chapeau Mark and Stanford.., you did not disappoint.

Republished with permission

Published at DZone with permission of Rogier Noort, author and DZone MVB.

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