So you want to be a *successful* Blogger

I was once again reminded of this most excellent post Blog Interesting - 32 Ways to Keep Your Blog from Sucking from Scott Hanselman. It should be required reading for any blogger, neophyte or oldster. Here is a teaser:

Stay relevant

  1. Know your audience
    • Use analytic tools like FeedBurner or Google Analytics to figure out who is reading your blog, so you can occasionally post things that certain folks might like. Also, try using Google Maps Guestmap.
      (Hello Afshin in Iran and Rad in Kenya and Merrill in Sri Lanka!)
      Personally I also avoid blogging too much local (to my town) stuff because most of my readers AREN'T in my town!
  2. Keep overtly personal information out of your tech blog
    • I enjoy posting about my son and my spouse, as many of you have (or will have) similar situations. However, I avoid blogging things like "I had a cold today" and "I need to change the oil in my car." Anytime you can tie personal stuff into the 'point,' (whatever your blog's point is) that's a good thing. Personally while I may like you a lot, I do find ongoing stories about this wonderful man/woman/emu that you met on to be a little dodgy if I started reading you for your deep knowledge of HTTP.
  3. Don't apologize about not blogging enough
    • Don't bother posting things like "I'm sorry, I've been busy doing stuff, I'll try to blog more." If this happens all the time readers just might float away.
  4. Steer clear of politics
    • I've found, after blogging about a certain election, that politics on non-political blogs (as well as religion) are not worth digging in to. Just as with my VERY good friends with whom I disagree, as well as my boss, I just avoid these topics.

I don’t do a good job of following all the rules, but at least I know which ones I’m breakin’ the rules on. You’d think that most of these would be no-brainers, but I can’t count the number of times I’ve read from a blogger an apology for not blogging enough. Really, that’s what you think I came to your site to read about. I’m just sayin’…

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