What,Are,Blogs,amp,#63,What,ar DIY What Are Blogs?
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What are Blogs? Having heard the term previously but not having paid muchattention most are just to afraid to show their ignoranceand ask the question, what is a blog? Lets face it; theterm blog does not conjure pleasant images. Blogs are web logs that are updated regularly, usually on adaily basis. They contain information related to a specifictopic. In some cases blogs are used as daily diaries aboutpeople's personal lives, political views, or even as socialcommentaries. The truth of the matter is that blogs can beshaped into whatever you, the author, want them to be. Where Did Blogs Come From?The roots of blogging can be traced back to the mid 1990's.Who the very first blogger actually was is unclear, as theart of blogging did not really take hold until 1999. Theoriginal "weblogs" were link-driven sites with personalcommentaries. The very first blogs were human guidedInternet web tours. While initially thought of as diariesor online journals, blogs have evolved into the latestfresh web content. The Future of BlogsA buzz word in techie circles, "blogging" is the wave ofthe future. Whether its a fad, or proves to be a new way tocommunicate with existing and potential customers itdeserves at the very least a cursory look. Why is Blogging Helpful to Businesses or Individuals?Just as animated .gifs were once cool, blogging is thetrendy thing to do. That does not mean that it is notbeneficial to businesses. Webmasters struggling to keepfresh, attractive content on their websites to lurevisitors back, have found blogs the answer. Content is anecessity for online businesses, both for purposes of beingfound by search engines but also because it gives visitorsa reason to come back. Now that we have established that blogs are not only trendybut also beneficial to businesses, its important tounderstand how they can be used to your advantage. Wecurrently manage and update three blogs on a daily basis.The first is our new business blog at:http://www.notepage.net/blog.htm This professional business blog allows us the opportunityto tell potential, or existing, customers industry news,updates, or generally how mobile or paging software can beused in specific situations to alleviate problems. Thebottom line is we control the content. It's updated daily,which increases the chances that search engines will spideron a regular basis and it helps with page rank because it'sbeen submitted to all the blogging directories. Initiallystarted on a whim we've found it beneficial to report tips,tricks or make visitors aware of new regulations related tothe mobile or paging industry. The second blog we manage is at:http://www.softwaremarketingresource.com/blog.htmlThis blog is less formal and contains marketing tips, orpromotional advice for software developers or onlinemarketers. We found that we had overflow from our monthlynewsletter. Generating a daily blog would require verylittle effort and would assist us in creating fresh contentwhich our readers told us was of significant interest.The third blog is a combination of both styles and containstips for small businesses. The small business blog islocated at:http://www.small-business-software.netBlogs & Your BusinessThe bottom line is you need to determine how a blog willbenefit your business, determine a schedule and adhere toit. Let your readers know what to expect and when to expectit. Blogs provide great supplemental content and directattention to areas of your business that you want toshowcase; you direct the content but let your readers guideyou.Creating a BlogThere are numerous online tools that can be used to createa blog. We found that because of security concerns, itwould just be best to use a standard html program. In ourcase we used Dreamweaver and create daily posts. It's reallynot much more complicated than typing an email. The contentis then sent via FTP to a web server. If you want to testthe waters there are online web-based tools that help youpublish to the web instantly. The most popular web-basedtool is likely Blogger http://www.blogger.com. Other Advantages to BlogsWhile you may initially create a blog for your existingcustomers, you may find that you can attract new customersby illustrating your expertise in a specific field. Thereare numerous websites that act as "blog search engines". Besure to submit your sites to these websites to increaseyour exposure. This will also help with your page rank andpossibly increase the likelihood you will receive decentranking with Google. You can also create an RSS feed inorder to syndicate blog content and gain additionalexposure. Article Tags: Search Engines, Business Blog