What is a blog?
A blog is a website with regular entries of commentary, descriptions of events or other content such as graphics or video. Entries are usually based on a particular subject and displayed in reverse-chronological order.
Blogging best practices
- Your department is responsible for its own blog activity.
- Research what other blogs may already be established for the social media audience you are reaching out to. While you are not responsible for social media content offered by other groups, be mindful of how your message, naming conventions, etc. may overlap with content administered outside the university.
- Blogging should be a vital part of your traditional marketing plan – not replace it. These communications tools need to interact. If they exist in a vacuum, your department doesn’t derive the full benefit of being in the social media space.
- Don't saturate your page with promotional or sales posts.
- Be honest about who you are and why you are posting. You're using the blog to have a conversation with your audience. A persistent sales pitch promotes a one-way dialog, and will cause your audience to tune out.
- Use a general St. Thomas e-mail address so access to the site will continue regardless of employee status. (i.e., email@example.com for School of Education). More than one person should have access to the mailbox.
- Your department should limit the number of authors/administrators for the department blog.
- Authors/administrators should be prepared to contribute consistent, high-quality content.
- Don't abandon good writing skills just you're posting online. The content may consist of photos, text, audio, video, polls, etc.
- Be sure you have rights to the content you publish. Copying a photo off the Internet and publishing it to your department Facebook page is not the same as having rights to that photo.
- Reward your audience for participating. You value being part of a conversation with your audience. Find a way to show them that you appreciate their engagement.
- Be committed to moderating comments on a regular basis. Delete any inappropriate material.
- Set goals for your blog activity. If possible, the goals should be measurable.
- Remember, you are representing the university brand. Civility and respect are critical in all interactions.
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