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May 6, 2011
Your Own Blogging Beat
Whether for business or personal  aims, maintaining a blog can get you a lot of relational mileage. But blogging is a discipline. What sort of discipline? Well, it brings to mind the beat reporter — from a time when many more reporters than today had subject-matter beats — like crime, labor or religion — to pursue. We'd be tearing off on a hot story, or dialing around, waiting for the next one to come along. That's how blogging goes, too, yet now the territory is the Web.

These thoughts came to mind while reading the Beyond PR post "Beating Blog Burnout." That was the title of panel at the recent annual conference of the American Society of Journalists and Authors in New York. Some great pros shared insights on keeping blogs fresh and pertinent. Like much of writing, the success of a blog relates a lot to the reading and roaming you do, intellectually speaking, before you start writing. The thing about a blog, though, is that it's fun, because you create and maintain its entire persona, as though you were a press lord. You are, actually.

Why this is so is reflected in the "beating burnout" post. Spend some time with it and get into a productive blogging mindset. "If you do the hard work upfront," said Susan Getgood, vice president of sales and marketing for BlogHer, "it'll be easier down the road. There's too much competition now. If you want to grab the readers, you have to think of it as a business, even if you don't want to monetize the blog."

This is a very generous "how to" post that will charge your blogging batteries for some time — like all those phone numbers did on the labor beat.

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Doug Bedell has a background in journalism and PR and is the owner of Resource Relations LLC in Central PA, focusing on organizational and crisis communication. He’s the community manager of SimplyFair.net, a social network on fairness. On the Web, Doug’s at www.ResourceRelations.com. On Twitter, he’s @DougBeetle.
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