Darren's task for today's 31 Days to Building a Better Blog was to look at the ads on my site. Since I don't run ads, that wasn't going to work for me, so I decided to go back to Darren's previous post, 7 Days to Rediscovering Your Blogging Groove, to find inspiration for today. This is where the link post comes in.I'm going to share some of what I've been learning from my fellow 31 Day Challenge participants:
- Tim Davies has a GREAT question on his blog today, asking if the 31 Day challenge format might be adapted for organizational learning and change programs. He compares it to a recent experiment with a 48 hour knowledge jam session in which he participated and wonders if there isn't something to be gained from having these relatively brief periods of focused, intense learning to build teams and skills. I happen to agree with Tim that done right, there could be a lot of potential for organizational training and culture-building to construct a similar challenge with daily activities and blogging. Yes, it would be intense, but that's part of the learning process.
- Sue Waters reminds us to subscribe to our own blogs in a feed reader so we can see how we're coming across. She points out that many people will only read your blog in a reader (like Google Reader) and you may not be making the best impression. I particularly agree with her advice to include all of your post in the feed. Don't force people to click over to your site to get the rest of your content. They may just not bother.
- Cammy Bean is wondering about the ethics of going back to old posts to add new links. While she'll fix grammatical and spelling errors, anything else makes her uncomfortable. But as she points out in comments on the post, she's not really sure why she feels this way, since it's her content. I think it's something to consider and I'm curious how others feel about the practice.
- Eklavya, the Indian Blogger, explores the line between the personal and the professional. It's a line I struggle with all the time, although I think I may be inclined to share more personal information than Eklavya. Then again, maybe that's a cultural thing, as Americans are known for being willing to spill their guts to just about anyone. Which raises the question of how to balance the two when your audience is international. How can you find the right blend when cultural mores differ from nation to nation?
- The gang over at SmokeFree Wisconsin used the Day 6 challenge task of emailing a long-time reader to explore the pattern of comments on their site. What they discovered is that many of the comments were coming from their own blogging team and that they didn't have the level of interactivity from other readers that they were looking for, despite the fact that they're an advocacy organization. This is something that I think a lot of organizational blogs may struggle with and I think it's worth taking a look at their post and comments to consider the different factors that go into making an advocacy blog interactive.
There's more great stuff happening with our Challenge participants, but these were some that particularly caught my attention. I love how the knowledge we're gaining from all of this activity is going way beyond just doing the activities. I'm learning a ton by seeing how other people interact with the tasks on their own blogs.
Oh--and one more thing, thanks to Alex Miller, I can now say this: