Responding to a post by Ed Smith
on the Self-Publishing Yahoogroup
about whether blogs are worth it:
Hi I am considering putting a blog on my website with the objective of
increasing visitors to my site. I am aware of the costs to set it up,
but I am concerned about the amount of work involved in keeping it
spam free and on target. It sounds like it is a lot of work that has
to be done on a daily basis. Could those of you who run blogs on
their websites, give me your opinion as to it being worth the time you
are putting into the blog. Any thoughts about do's and don'ts
regarding setting up a blog are welcome as well. Thanks for your help.
I spend one to two hours a week on my blog, which I host on my own site in WordPress and also keep a mirror hosted on Blogger--probably average three posts per week. Some of these posts I also copy to my AmazonConnect blog, but very few. I spend far more time posting here and other lists. Been doing it for a year and a half, and what scared me off for so long was the idea that I needed to post every day. Of course, you'll get better results the more often you post.
* It's really true that blog posts seem to get into search engines faster
* A post of mine got referenced by Slate.com and I saw a nice traffic spike
* Some of the posts only take five or ten minutes--a paragraph or two, and a link
* One of my long-time goals is to be a syndicated columnist. Last year, I took about six of the longer and best thought out pieces and repackaged them as sample columns. I sent to four syndicates. All said no, but at least I wasn't creating the articles from scratch!
* I have a small but dedicated following, a few of whom (including at least one listmate) have signed up for e-mail notifications
* Sometimes I can repurpose content--this post, for instance, will make a nice blog entry
* Of course, it's more links inbound to my site (from the Goggle-owned mirror on Blogger and from anyone referencing my post)
* It seems to add to my credibility when I tell, for instance, reporters that I've been blogging on business ethics for over a year
Definitely offer the option of e-mail feeds and XML feeds, and definitely use pingoat.com to tell the world when you update.
As for comment spam, yes, I've experienced it. I turned on word Verification on Blogger, and turned on pre-approval on WordPress. No spam gets through, and when someone tried to hammer me on WordPress, I just bulk-deleted all their attempts.