What Successful Bloggers Already Know, But You Might Not

A middle-aged man in a suit pointing for emphasis

I finished Blog by Hugh Hewitt yesterday. Its slick jacket caught my attention. Bill Chiaravalle, and Mark Mickel did an excellent job designing it. I was intrigued by this book about blogs and blogging tips so I bought it. Here is what I found:

Blog chronicles the history of the blogosphere and pushes for its expansion. It argues that we are in the midst of a reformation, and democratization of information, very much like the one caused by the invention of the printing press. Hewitt tells his readers who he believes are the Martin Luthers of our day and warns us to join them or be left behind.

This book shares a recent history of American politics and American news agencies to show how they were instrumental in establishing the blogosphere’s influence. In doing this, Hewitt shares his political views freely. (He says that this is important so that the reader can easily discern opinions for what they are) This approach might turn off some readers but it is the kind of writing that is so influential.

Blog was published in 2005 and yet the book remains relevant. It gives a frame of reference in which one can evaluate the current status of the “information revolution.”

9 Rules of Blogging Success and Significance

What are the rules? It is the first question one asks when introduced to a game. The answer often has a fair bit of strategy thrown in. These extra bits of information are intended to help a person until he or she understands the game and can form new strategies. These nine “rules” were given by Hugh Hewitt in his book Blog. Here are his, “key rules of blogging success and significance:” (Hewitt, 151)

  1. Post often
  2. Link freely
  3. Be generous in praise and attribution
  4. Don’t be long-winded too often, if at all (Brevity is the soul of blogging when you are getting started)
  5. Paragraphs are your friend
  6. Profanity loses audiences
  7. Avoid feuds and flame wars
  8. At least at the start, skip the comments sections (You end up with the problem of nuts if you are any good)
  9. Keep the title [of the blog] short and easy to remember so that it is easy to recall and type into the space at the top of the page

Two of these rules only apply to beginners. For example, long posts tend to be better received than short ones (read more here) but can easily cause burnout. Eliciting feedback from readers can be very beneficial but negative comments could discourage a beginner from continuing.

It might help you to know that the internet and the web are not the same things. The Internet is a global network of computers. The web is a bunch of linked HTML files (webpages) on the internet. Healthy websites are strongly connected to the web. This why Hewitt encourages people to be liberal…with their links.

I hope this has been a help to you. If so, please pass it along to others.


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