Monday, February 23, 2009

What Makes A Good Blog?

I read several blogs each day and I'm sure you do, too. Some of them I read daily and keep going back.

I'm beginning to put together a mental picture of what I like in a blog. Let's see if you agree. Here's what I've come up with so far:
1. Brief posts with lots of white space.
2. Short paragraphs. I become discouraged and usually stop reading when I see long, seemingly unending ones. There's not alot of time to spend on any one blog. Most of us are short on time these days.
3. Color. Art. Photography.
4. A question at the end of each post. It encourages comments.
5. Do some giveaways. Everyone loves a game and free stuff.
6. Write the way you normally talk. It grows trust between you and your reader.
7. Try to respond to each comment, so the reader will know you've actually read it and value their remarks. Sometimes it's not practical, I know, but it's usually doable (is that a word?).
8. Add some humor.
9. Try to post something each day. Regular readers want to have their daily visit with you.
10. Don't share your most intimate information online. You never know who's reading it.

***Now it's your turn. What do you think makes a great blog?

23 comments:

Marilyn said...

Good post, Barbara.

I've watched your blog grow and change since you started it. You've done a good job of incorporating all these things into your blog. It's a pleasure to read.

Janna Qualman said...

Yep, "doable" is totally a word. ;)

I agree with all the things you mentioned, and would then add that if the blogger has a clear intention with their words (that is, they're not just lolly gaggin' around), and I can connect with what they're saying - I'll go back for more.

Barbara said...

Marilyn- I think you were one of my first readers. And it's nice to see you back from time to time. Many thanks for hanging in there with me.

Barbara said...

Janna- Thanks, I'm so glad that's a work.

Barbara said...

Janna- I meant to say WORD.

Linda said...

I agree with all those things--except maybe #9. I don't know that it has to be every day--but certainly regular so you can count on it. Blogs that go off-line for a month or more make you wonder if the person has just quit! But that's a very thorough list.

Debra (a/k/a Doris, Mimi) said...

Great post! I am certainly drawn to some blogs more than others...I just never put a lot of thought into "why". I do appreciate every comment and read them again and again. I don't always comment back because most are close, personal friends. However, I return the favor of a comment by visiting the commenter's blog. I am still amazed that bloggers other than my family and friends drop by to visit. I really enjoy the blogging community and value the friends I've made along the way.

JD said...

Barbara, Your blog is always such a pleasure to look at, and It's usually one of the first one's that I check out. As You know, I am new to blogging, and you have been so very helpful to me, Thank you for the extra hints.

Chocolate Covered Daydreams said...

To me, a blog is like an interesting journal or a book written by a good friend. I come back not because of the pictures or colorful images (as much) as I do the interesting person that is behind the creation of the blog. I envision being able to sit down with that person over a cup of coffee and laugh or cry together and share things with one another. That’s the key to making me come back over and over again to a blog.

Barbara said...

Linda- I completely agree. Sometimes other things come up that are more important that blogging. And we shouldn't feel so committed that it makes us feel guilty when we can't write something.

Glad to see you're back, safe and sound from your warm vacation.

Barbara said...

Debra- Commenting back on a reader's blog is a good thing. In fact, I think that should be a high priority. Thanks for that thought.

Barbara said...

JD- Thank you and please keep coming back!!

Barbara said...

Daydreams- You make a good point.

Terri Tiffany said...

Some great points! Especially the white space:))

Barbara said...

Terri- Yes, white space is good...mine happens to be yellow. LOL.

Becca said...

I do swaps every few months and they are always fun! I love it when new people come and comment on my blog. I always welcome new friends.

Barbara said...

Becca- I hope my readers will read your comment and come to visit...you sound like a truly nice person.

Joanne said...

Great list, I think one of the most important is short, but intriguing, posts. I like what Choc Covered Daydreams says, often times it is more the person behind the blog who draws me back, a type of friendship where we check in with each other often. The blog posts are almost a gauge, seeing what's new, how they're doing as we meet over the virtual backyard fence.

Lea and her Mustangs said...

I think Chocolate Covered Daydreams vocalized my feelings. Like the pictures but more important is what people have to say. I use mine kind of like a journal. And I like every day even if its ultra short. Love yours Barbara, Its about the first one I look at each day.

Barbara said...

Joanne- We have come so far as a society with our virtual backyard fences. Something our grandmothers couldn't have dreamed of.

Barbara said...

Lea- I can't find your email address, so you may have to email me first for the phone number. Jim and I would love to meet you and Bob!!

Lea and her Mustangs said...

I would rather get e mail at this address leawilliams65@yahoo.com

Michele said...

Great suggestions...
I've been evaluating my own today... Have let it slide for a few days as I've not been feeling great! Thanks for sharing!!!