Technology... is a queer thing. It brings you great gifts with one hand, and it stabs you in the back with the other. ~C.P. Snow, New York Times, 15 March 1971

Friday, April 22, 2011

The Art of Socialization: Blogging to Twitter, Part 1

Why do you write a blog?  Whether you write as a place to share your thoughts or activities, a place to share your art or the things you love, a place to promote your business, are a step in changing the world, chances are, you write to be read.  A blog with no readers is just a personal diary.

One of the big hot things on the web right now is social networking.  What used to be done in clubs and bars, conferences and conventions has moved to the web as social networks.  Everyone's heard of them, Facebook and MySpace, LinkedIn and Twitter.  People build their social network by finding people they know in real life, finding people with shared interests, finding friends of their friends.  The more people you know, the faster your network grows.

People use social networks for many things.  Some just want to know people, read about other people's lives.  During the Great Depression, cinema took off.  People were looking to escape their daily lives and their own troubles.  In a movie, you could watch other people's lives and forget about your own.  Centuries before that, novels became popular for the same reason.  While people still go to watch movies and read books, TV has really filled this escapism void.  And know On-Demand and Netflix, TiVo and DVR, Youtube and IceFilms, have made it so we can watch what we want when we want.  We can escape from reality any time we want with whatever we want.

Social networks and blogs fill this same need for people.  They give people a window into other people's lives.  But with these things, it is real people, real stories, not the fiction of movies and television.  Well, presuming everyone is honest.

No matter what you blog about, there is an audience.  There is someone out there somewhere that is interested in what you want to talk about.  The Internet is world wide (hence the name World Wide Web).  There are 6.91 billion people in the world, and, though obviously not every one of them is connected to the web, there is bound to be someone out there that shares your interests.

So, you want to write to be read, and there's someone out there that wants to read what you have to write.  How do you find each other?  The reader of course could do a search in Google or Yahoo! or whatever search engine they like and hope they find you.  But how high in the search will your blog be?  While the terms your reader searches for be the ones that find you blog?  There's no guaranty.

The goal of the blogger is to connect with people who share her interests who want to read what she has to say.  Isn't this what social networks are designed for?  One good way to get readers is connect with people through your social network that share the interests you write about, then share your blog with your social network.  Posting links to your blog entry to a social network is called socialization.

I talked in my last entry about Twitter.  Twitter is one of the larger social network, and there are applications set up that make it easy to share your Twitter Tweets with most other social networks.  If you can get it to Twitter, you can spread it to the rest easily.

In the next series of posts, I'm going to talk about ways to get your blog seen on Twitter.  From there, you can share it with the world.

Bethany Kennedy
IT Professional

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