Author Archive for Anne Marie Suchanek

Tips from the Pros: Community Management

In class last week, our community management class was fortunate enough to speak to Sean Keeley and Ally Greer, the founder of NunesMagician.com and Community Manager of Scoop.it (respectively). Each professional brought up interesting points as they shared experiences from their lives in social media and blogging. Throughout the hour long discussion, each person brought up important lessons for students to internalize.

50% Proactive, 50% Reactive

Ally Greer commented that community management was 50% proactive and 50% reactive. Although I understood prior to her comment that community management was more than just managing, it didn’t strike me that community management really had to be a balance between managing conversation and allowing them to happen organically. I thought it was important that she reminded the class of the balance a community manager needs to maintain in order to have a thriving, yet natural community. This also reminded me of what was talked about in class, which is to moderate a conversation, not dominate it. It was interesting to hear people apply the lessons learned in class to their own experiences, and phrase these lessons in words that applied specifically to their communities.

Sean Keeley talks to #cmgrclass via Google Plus.

Sean Keeley talks to #cmgrclass via Google Plus.

Write For Yourself 

When asked if Sean Keeley writes towards a particular demographic (perhaps a 25 year old Syracuse male), he replied by saying that he writes for himself. Although this comment at first seemed self-serving, it soon seemed like that was the only acceptable answer. While every blog may have a typical member, it is important that one’s own interests and passions are satisfied when writing. As discussed later in the Google Plus group, how can one run a successful blog if their own interests aren’t taken into consideration? Sean’s unique answer certainly gave all bloggers and class members an opportunity to think about why someone may want to initially start a blog.

People Need To Know What They Want

Although both bloggers/community managers have had different experiences, they can both agree that people need to know what they want. Based on Ally Greer’s experiences, she specifically mentions how users may not know what they want from a service until the option is offered to them. For Sean Keeley, offering news about different sports may not be something that users knew they wanted until the news was on the website. Regardless of the type of field one is blogging about, it’s important to give users options and allow them to figure out what they want for themselves.

What do you think about these points? Is there anything you’d like to add or disagree with? Let us know in the comments below! 

How To Write The Perfect Blog Post

Writing the perfect blog post can be difficult. There are lots of things to consider upon outlining a blog post. What kind of title will attract people? What do people want to hear about? How will my blog post be different from others that are already published? These questions, along with many others, are all important for bloggers to consider before writing a post.

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Darren Rowse speaks at a conference in Oregon.

Luckily, an article was written about how to craft the perfect blog post. Author Darren Rowse hits on several points, including the importance of your opening line and timing the publishing of your post correctly. Within each of his points, Rowse continues to break down the blogging process by further analyzing each of his general suggestions. In his post, Rowse jokes about the first thing his future wife said to him when they met to emphasize the importance of an opening line. Through personal anecdotes, Rowse is able to convey the important aspects of blogging to those reading along.

Reading these tips were not only interesting, but helpful. I’ve been a blogger for Infospace, the School of Information Studies‘ official blog, for almost two years! One of the areas in which I’ve struggled with most is finding a topic to write about. Although there is so much constantly happening in the tech world, I find that it can sometimes be difficult to write a post that is not only informative, but also offers perspective on a piece of technology. I’ve learned that it’s important to find something to write about that’s not only important to you, but important to readers! One piece that I wrote for Infospace which was incredibly important to me was this piece about what to do when your internship comes to and end. I wrote this at the end of my internship when I was starting to reflect on my experiences there and looked towards the future. I knew that many students were in a similar position as me, and decided that outlining best practices would be informative and helpful. The post received great feedback, and many people reached out to me thanking me for helping them. A blog post feels successful when you know that something you wrote resonated with people.

Rowse mentions the importance of connecting with an audience in his article along with another key piece of advice, which is to “picture a reader.” This unique piece of advice was something I never considered and feel could be incredibly helpful when writing a post. Rowse says to try and put himself in the mindset of a reader. It’s important to consider “their situation, needs, questions and challenges in front of” them. By analyzing what’s important to a reader, it can become easier to figure out what needs to be addressed in a blog post. I’ve promised myself to do the same for when I continue to write blog posts so I can address the needs of the audience. Blog post audiences can make or break a post. If a piece of writing is well received, then it can make a huge impact! Thinking about the audience is something to always remember.

Although there are a lot of things to consider when writing a blog post, I’ve learned that things come naturally once you start to understand the blogging community and you practice writing posts over and over. By following Rowse’s tips and continuing to blog, anyone can be well on their way to writing a great post.