Advanced Activity 2: Effective Posts

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Andrew Williamson (@willie42 on Twitter) writes a blog at Globalteacher, called “Split Three Ways”, which contains one of the most memorable posts I have read. The post, “Ultranet Down” had 24 lengthy comments, and 4 tweets, which I would consider to be effective writing. I think that the five effective characteristics that this post demonstrates are:

  1. Clear, simple and topical title.
  2. Written for a specific audience and purpose.
  3. Written with passion for and knowledge of the subject.
  4. Gives the audience an insight into the author’s character.
  5. Shows good research and a thoughtful approach.

 I think that knowing your audience and what you want to achieve when posting will improve your writing. A successful post on a class blog, which gets lots of comments from students and parents, will be quite different from a successful professional development blog post. The reason that Andrew’s post drew such passionate responses, was because there were many Victorian educators thinking along similar lines and it was a topic that many teachers involved with technology were concerned about.

P.S. Andrew’s blog also has a great header image and avatar, clean and easy to read formatting and an interesting title. I always like to add an image to my posts, because I am a very visual learner and it helps me to remember the content at a glance. The image in this post is a creative commons licensed image from Flickr.

13 comments

  1. Penny Bentley

    Britt…thanks for the “ultranet down” post which I read with interest.
    I like to use images to help convey the message of a post. Great for us visual learners. I love the old post box and always enjoy reading your posts 🙂

  2. brittgow

    Thanks Kathryn, Mr Carson and Stacy for your thoughtful comments. Although I have been blogging for several years, there is so much to learn and it does take time to build a readership. I live on a farm in a rural community, so it is very important to me to have contact with fellow teachers and bloggers around the world. Thank you for taking the time to connect with me!

  3. Stacy Nockowitz

    “Shows good research and a thoughtful approach.” Yes, yes, yes! The research may be time-consuming but it makes the blog so much more credible. Food for thought!

  4. MrDCarson

    I must agree with Step 4 “Gives the audience an insight into the author’s character.” It really is one of my favs and what I enjoy about reading blogs. When a person VOICE shines through I find myself really connecting to the post.

  5. Miss T

    Britt
    Thank you for this post. I got my first smile of the day when I saw your photo. Love it. You took the time to get something pertinent.

    I liked the ultranet post, and have put Andrew into my google reader. Thanks for the link. I had things all closed away. Fortunately at our school I have a Principal who is open to wide use.
    Kathryn

  6. Britt Gow

    Thanks Emil, Andrea, Mel, Glenda and Anne for your responses. It is exciting getting so many thoughtful comments from readers and fellow bloggers. Everyone is doing such a great job in this blogging challenge, I am really glad I decided to participate. Mel, thanks for your suggestion for CC images – I can feel another blog post coming on. Where to find CC images and where to store files in the clouds. I look forward to reading more during the blogging challenge.

  7. Anne Mirtschin

    Britt, I like that fact that you referred to the number of comments and tweetouts as it does indicate that readers have found something valuable there or has provided a basis for an ongoing discussion.
    I love the fact that you always add great images to your log posts. The image immediately catches they eye and makes the reader want to know and explore more.

  8. Glenda Morris

    Hi Britt,
    Thanks for your post on your ideas for effective blog posts.
    We both agree that relevant images are an important feature of good blog posts. I think images are a must because it makes posts more visually interesting and breaks up the text.
    Look forward to further networking.
    Glenda (the groovy librarian)

  9. Mel Cashen

    Dear Britt,

    Thanks for your post. I too was one of the people who read Andrew’s post on the Ultranet and at the time it was certainly a post I shared with others.

    I too agree with the use of photos in a blog. I will ‘give up’ reading a post if there is too much writing.

    I like to use http://www.photos8.com for my CC photos.

    Mel

  10. Andrea Nichols

    I agree with your suggestions! They are very similar to my suggestions in today’s submission.
    The suggestions in the post script are very important as well.

    Andrea

  11. Emil Harden

    You mention something in your “PS” that I think does not get enough attention. A blog that is clean and easy to read. Too many pages are littered with distracting elements, music that starts playing, things flashing and whirling. The actual post is often lost in the clutter. A good, clean template is an essential starting place. Thanks for pointing that out!

  12. brittgow

    Thanks for your comment Russell. I am increasingly using my own images for my blog (I go everywhere with my camera-phone now) and I also use the Creative Commons Image Search, which has the Flickr images, but other sources as well.

  13. Russell Ogden

    Thanks for the reference to Andrew’s blog Britt. I have added him to my reader and will certainly be interested to have a close look around!

    I appreciate and concur with your sentiments on effective blogging. I also like to add an image where possibles to my posts. Do you regularly use any image sources other that Flickr?

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