Hootsuite, Twitter, Linkedin, Instagram, Facebook and Blog are seen to be popular among social media users currently, and based on my experience in producing these social media platforms for Melbourne Noir project, blogging is the main challenge.
Blog can provide both readers and bloggers with many benefits including exchanging knowledge and ideas (Koning, 2013), improving soft and hard skills (Cangiano, 2012; Hazari et al., 2013), enhancing communication skills (Fowler and Thomas, 2015), building professional networks and self’s reputation (Problogger, 2012), and reflecting self-learning (Muncy, 2014). However, Blogging can be quite challenging for a beginner. Designing content, writing in an attractive way, and using photography and video are the main obstacles I have encountered, which can hinder the improvement of my Blog.
The problem associated with content delivery is that I have no idea what is the most fascinating issue I should post on my Blog. This can be seen as the conflict between blogger’s interest and the reader’s. Snell (2015) argues that writing Blog without main purpose can be problematic which can lead to the ambiguity of designing Blog content. To deal with this, Patel (2015) suggests that each blogger has to know his/her target audience, and make a prompt decision on content sharing. Having clear focus of each blogpost can grab reader’s attention and increase readership (Klems, 2012). Normally, I have prioritised my personal interest rather than thinking of the audience’s and this might somehow make my Blog become more self-oriented. Identifying potential audience perhaps help bloggers to shape the angle of the content, but they might have some challenges if they do not have knowledge and experiences to fulfill audience’s demands. Therefore, for my future Blog, I would prefer choosing a combination contents between writing information that relates to my expertise and serves a specific group of audience.
Another issue regarding blogging is the ability to write attractively. Due to my limited knowledge and experience of blogging, writing Blog to post interestingly is problematic. I do not know where to start and how to make it flow well. I sometimes write blogpost without thinking of the main idea that I intent to convey message to the public and this leads to misunderstanding and unclear structure. Clark (2016) identified three important writing problems, which includes the way to start up writing, to link idea together and to finish. Increasing more reading and using simple language can help bloggers enhance the structure of their writing gradually (Rakt, 2016). Besides, daily writing is more likely to boost the blogger’s confidence in writing various subjects critically and structurally. Thus, I will learn to improve my writing by practices and by reading a diversity of articles, others’ blogposts, books or journals although it might be time-consuming.
Using Photo and Video
The usage of photo and video in Blog is demanding as I am a new blogger. Capturing a good quality photo or filming video requires skills and it is one of my loopholes. Working on Melbourne Noir project, I could not think of creative photograph frames for my Blog. Mills (2007) explains that a combination of video and photo posting on Blog can attract more readers because audiences are more likely to explore something new and different. Visualising blogpost by using photos can also promote blog’s popularity and credibility (Klems, 2012) and catch readers’ attention (Bloggingpro, 2013). Pidgeon (2014) also recommends a few techniques, two of which are deciding on what to shoot, and following rule of thirds. These tips seem to be practically useful for me and I believe that by having a mixture of text, photo and video can make my Blog become more professional and successful though it may require more efforts.
Bloggingpro. (2013): 5 Creative Blog Design Strategies to Attract Viewers to Your Blog. Retrieved on 20 July 2016 from http://www.bloggingpro.com/archives/2013/10/01/5-creative-blog-design-strategies-you-can-attract-viewers-to-your-blog/
Cangiano, A. (2012): Why Every Professional Should Consider Blogging. Retrieved on 24 July 2016 from http://technicalblogging.com/why-every-professional-should-consider-blogging/
Clark, B. (2016). The 5-Step Process that Solves 3 Painful Writing Problems. Retrieved 23 July 2016 from http://www.copyblogger.com/writing-process/
Fowler, K and Thomas, V.L. (2015). Creating a Professional Blog: The Impact of Student Learning Styles on Perceptions of Learning. Journal of Marketing Education, 37 (3), 181-189.
Hazari, S., Brown, C. O., & Rutledge, R. (2013). Investigating marketing students’ perceptions of active learning and social collaboration in blogs. Journal of Education for Business, 88, 101-108.
Klems, B. A. (2012). The 12 Dos and Don’ts of Writing a Blog. Retrieved on 28 July 2016 from http://www.writersdigest.com/online-editor/the-12-dos-and-donts-of-writing-a-blog
Koning, D. M. (2013). Hello world! Challenges for blogging as anthropological outreach. Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute, 19 (2), 394–397
Mills, A. (2007). Blogging: Lessons and Challenges. Legal Information Management, 7(4), 236-238
Muncy, J. A. (2014). Blogging for reflection: The use of online journals to engage students in reflective learning. Marketing Education Review, 24, 101-113.
Problogger. (2012). 8 Reasons Why Students Should Blog. Retrieved on 26 July 2016 from http://www.problogger.net/8-reasons-why-students-should-start-a-blog/
Patel, N. (2015). 4 Simple Ways to Choose the Best Blog Topics for Your Audience. Retrieved on 26 July 2016 from http://blog.hubspot.com/marketing/choose-the-best-blog-topics#sm.000001wpvvitgt1f2av6g53jimx4e
Pidgeon, E. (2014). How to take great photos even on your cell phone. Retrieved on 27 July 2016 from http://blog.ted.com/how-to-take-great-photos-even-on-your-cell-phone/
Rakt, van de, M. (2016). Obtain an attractive writing style. Retrieved 29 July 2016 from https://yoast.com/attractive-writing-style-blog/
Snell, S. (2015). 5 Common Blogging Problems, and How to Overcome Them. Retrieved 26 July 2016 from http://www.vandelaydesign.com/common-blogging-problems/