Although blogs have been around since the late 1990’s, there are still many people that ask the question “What is a Blog?” Blogs were originally created for personal and leisurely purposes but over the years they have become much more than that. No longer do we simply associate blogging with people that like to vent their anger at the end of a long and stressful day – instead, we can appreciate blogs for what they really are – opportunities to share your knowledge, connect with others, and boost your internet marketing strategy.
What Features Make a Blog a “Blog”?
A blog is basically a certain type of website that has specific characteristics that make it a ‘blog’. For example:
- Subscribers and readers of a blog have the option to leave comments and ask questions below each post. Posts may include links to sites of interest to the reader, articles, or images.
- Practically anyone can write a blog – even those with very little technical knowledge. Using an interface provider, a blogger (technologically minded or not) can write, update and post without the assistance of a web designer.
- Posts are listed in order of date – the usual format of a blog is that the most recent content is placed at the top of the webpage, and as the reader scrolls, the content reveals previous posts.
- Blogs often operate through RSS feeds – this means that the content is syndicated and can be accessed via the web without readers coming directly to the site itself.
- Using “pingbacks”, bloggers can link their page to another person’s blog, creating links with new readers, other blog owners and establishing an online reputation.
- Posts are updated on a regular basis, with changes being made to original posts to keep content fresh and enlightening for the reader, and newer blogs posted to keep the audience engaged at all times.
What Kind of Blogger Do You Want to Be?
There are two main types of blogs – personal and business.
1) A Personal Blog
A personal blog is ideal for someone who wants to connect with people socially. Almost like an online diary, a personal blogger can write about whatever angers, motivates, or moves them; generally writing about their lives and how they are feeling. Personal blogs often have a much smaller following than business blogs (with a few exceptions) and are usually directed at the blogger’s friends, colleagues and family.
2) A Business Blog
A business blog on the other hand is focussed on one specific niche. A business blog is a great tool for sharing useful information about your company, interacting and connecting with other businesses, and gaining potential customers to help increase your market share. Amongst online entrepreneurs in a variety of niches, business blogs are considered to be the ultimate tool towards building your credibility online and reaching out to new people. A blog helps in building trust and therefore increasing revenue through reliable and informative blogging. A blog is important for all business because it is the foundation of SEO for traffic generation. Think about it this way, when somebody turns on their computer and goes on Google or any other major search engine, in almost every occasion that person is searching for information on something. A blog is an “information giver” and, therefore, an essential component to the search engines.