Wayside Learning Community has been retired but Inspiring Communities has carried forward the blog content from the site, and these guidelines still apply!
A blog post about how to write a blog post. Yes, that is exactly the kind of meta-level work we do here!
That is, of course, a joke, but blogs about how to start a blog (The Minimalists) or write blog posts (Blue Host Blog, WordStream Blog) aren’t new.
The Wayside Team recently hosted a lunch and learn for the Inspiring Communities network to talk a little bit about why blogs matter, how to write blog posts, and how to submit blog posts to the Wayside blog. The highlights of that discussion are listed below in five easy steps.
What is a Blog
A blog is, according to Blogging Wizard, “a regularly updated website or web page, typically one run by an individual or small group, that is written in an informal or conversational style.” Key points in this are “regularly updated” and “informal”. Blogs started as online journals. If you are trained in journalism or academic writing, you might find it a little uncomfortable at first to write informally. The good news is, if you are NOT a trained writer, blog writing is a great place to start.
Why Blogs Matter
Blogs offer a great way to keep your website content fresh without rearranging your core website architecture or information. They also offer a way to draw readers to your website, through incorporating relevant keywords that people who want to connect with you might use in an online search. Finally, blogs offer great fodder for social media. Each blog post could lead to 3-4 individual social media posts over time, making it a little easier to keep your social media community engaged.
So why blog for Wayside? To help us build the most robust resource bank of information on making systems change in Atlantic Canada! The only way we can do that is by tapping into the best source of information — you.
How to Write (Good) Blog Posts
Informality is fine. Clear, plain language is best. Choose a small, right-sized topic – to make an extended argument, consider breaking a big topic down into multiple posts.
Figure out your keywords (the ways people might search for the content of your blog post) and then incorporate them as you write. Google Trends is one great tool to help you identify good keywords.
There are a few reliable formats for blog posts that can be great starting points when you are stuck. Templates for these are listed below. Incorporate links to other content to align with credible sources and boost your page ranking. And always end your post with a call to action – either an encouragement to visit your website, to read another related blog post, or to sign up for your newsletter for example.
(Adapted from Hubspot and customized for Wayside):
- How to Write a How-To Blog Post
- How to Write a What Is Blog Post
- How to Write a List Blog Post
- How to Write a Reflection Blog Post
- How to Write a Commentary (“Newsjacking”) Blog Post
- How to Write an Infographic Blog Post
How to Submit Blog Posts to Wayside
This is the easiest step!
- Choose your topic – something related to making systems change in the Atlantic Provinces.
- Write 200-1000 words. Check the templates above for guidance if needed.
- Choose a photo (300x200px) to accompany your blog. (More photos are okay too!)
- Use this form to submit!
Do you have a favourite blog? Share it with us as we compile a list of Best Blogs for Atlantic Changemakers!
Note: blog posts may be edited for content, accuracy, length and grammar. Unsolicited blog posts deemed not on topic for Wayside may not be posted.
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