Blogging Lessons…

Gretchen posted about lessons learned in the first few months of blogging. Her eloquent post (go Gretchen!) is truly representative of my feelings as well. a few more to add:

-When you are a non-technical blogger, less people know you are there. Zoe and Gretchen are really known as “the bloggers“. Some of the marketing recruiters know what I am doing, but I don't have the broad internal exposure that Z&G do across recruiting. Maybe that is because they started blogging before I one day.  Anyway, at the end of the day, I am responsible for results and part of that is that you know I am here. My audience is primarily external, so I am cool with not being recognized as much inside MS.

-Blogging is a platform for whining. Not saying everyone does this because that's not true. Blogging just makes it very easy for the whiners to go public in a big way. Maybe partly because you can be somewhat anonymous (or what is it called when you are known by name but someone couldn't pick you out of a line-up...quasi anonymous maybe?). I also think it's because people want to find something interesting to say and a detailed analysis of what's wrong with something must seem pretty interesting to most folks and an easy topic to come up with. I try to balance my critical posts with others that are informative or funny (at least I think I am funny). Also, I think that endearing yourself to your audience by complaining about something that might bug them too, helps to engage them (“us versus them” mentality). Not the ideal way to build community but I've definitely noticed it with some blogs. I challenge myself every day to be a “glass half full” person (I'm very analytical and have a tendency to go into “problem solving“ mode which sometimes comes off as being critical) and the complaining brings me down. I'm just saying. But I am not complaining. I'm not, I'm not, I'm not!

-People don't know why they want you to keep doing it but they want you to keep doing it. And once you do it, you are an expert and other people want you to show them how to do it. But they don't know why they want to do it either, but they think it's cool.

-It's not easy coming up with something interesting to say every day. Some days I feel kind of “blah“ and I don't want to blog on those days. Being interesting and relevant is a true talent.

-If you don't want to freak your parents out, you shouldn't tall them about the blog ; ) Easy to share aspects of your personal life when you are quasi-anonymous, huh? My mom worries about whether I lock my windows at night. She doesn't know I have a blog. Or  if she does, she hasn't told me she knows and is spying on me right now...Mom, are you there? ; )

Comments (7)

  1. PickyGrammarCorrectingJerk says:

    I apologize in advance for this, but it’s, "fewer people know you are there."

    I know no one likes a grammar corrector; that one just happens to be like fingers on a chalkboard to me.

  2. Heather says:

    yeah, i guess i could correct it but I am not going to ; ) "irregardless of what you say" (that’s my pet peeve…irregardless isn’t a word)

  3. Your Mother knows what a Blog is??? 🙂 My Mom barely knows what the Internet is.

  4. Also on thw whining aspects of blogging, I am guilty of it but have given up. I am of the thinking that no ones wants to "listen" to whining unless there is a solution at the end. I would not care to here of a frustration someone has/had and then have a follow up with the result hat stopped the whining.

  5. Nik Palmer says:

    I think it’s all in your branding…

    Z&G have this thing with their names that just kind of flows..

    Heather’s Marketing @ Microsoft….. Maybe it’s because I’m a scrabbler and see the Z & G as giving them more points


    Whining sucks on a blog, unless you’ve got a very funny whine or a solution. Agreed.

    Mom’s are ok. But I have an odd relationship with my folks. No judgements, no worries. They’ve been reading my weblogs since like 1994.

    I keep a topic of "readymade" essays and discussions in the can and waiting for postings on days when I haven’t got a "Fresh" thing to say. on the days I don’t have time or interest to edit, I send out the flurry of links that I’ve been storing up.

  6. Hi Heather,

    Get ready to get mad at me. This entry was pretty whiney. I thought that blogs were supposed to be critical but in a cheeky sort of way.

    As for coming up with daily topics, I’m like Nik; I keep a store ready. But you can use a newsreader like Feed Demon to keep you apprised of what’s happening on related blogs. Their postings will suggest topics you might want to expound upon. I know I’d be interested to see what other bloggers have to say about the topics we cover. And you’re welcome to cut anything I say to shreds. We could have a blog war. (I had some fun with your blog last week in case you didn’t notice).

    Personally, I enjoy seeing the details of how you spend your day and do your work and I’m sure its invaluable information for potential candidates.

    Finally, I’ve never seen you in anyone’s comments. But maybe we read different blogs.



  7. Heather says:

    Michael-I’m not mad at you…I rarely get mad. I don’t think my post was whiny at all. When you say "I thought that blogs were supposed to be critical but in a cheeky sort of way." I guess I don’t understand. I didn’t think blogs were "supposed" to be anything in particular. The technology is what it is and the content is what people decide they want it to be. My point was that many have used it as a platform to complain…but it doens’t have to be that way. Critical analysis is cool…inane whining is not cool. We probably aren’t reading a lot of the same blogs. Anyway, if you thought my blog was whiny, you probably don’t want to meet me in person. I’m snarky but fun and definitely not whiny.

    Good synopsis of my post last week. Very "cheeky". You can probably get away with that tone a lot more than I can. If I do it, it’s "Microsoft recruiter has an attitude problem".

    So let me summarize. I’m snarky but north of the border I translate as whiny. You are cheeky and I’m not inviting you you to meet me for coffee if you ever come to Seattle ; )

    Cheeky enough for ya? ; )

    All in good fun, of course!

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