Week one: Introduce your blog

by lizzschumer

Welcome to digital writing or writing for the web. This week, we will be creating our own blog sites and familiarizing ourselves with the features available to create digital content. The first thing you need to do is introduce your blog and its purpose. This first blog post can make or break it, as it goes live for the first time. You want prospective readers to be interested in the content you’re going to provide, and in order to do that, you must tell them what that is.

A few guidelines:

Papa don’t preach. Tell your readers what you plan to do, but don’t proselytize. If your blog is all about the merits of vegetarianism, don’t start by discussing the evil, disgusting lives of carnivores. That will turn them off your content (and lose you clicks) right away.

Brevity is the soul of wit. We will get deeper into the importance of conscious length later in the semester, but for now, keep it short and sweet. Tell your readers who you are, what your blog is about and get out of there. It’s always better to leave them wanting more.

Be a window, not a door. Go ahead and introduce yourself to your readers, but be aware of what needs to be said, and what doesn’t. If your blog is about fashion, explain to your readers why you’re qualified to talk about it, but there’s no need to tell your entire life story. Give them a peek into who you are, but don’t let them all the way in.

Coming soon to theaters. Wrap up your first post by telling your readers what’s next. Give them an idea of what you’ll be covering in subsequent posts, so they have a reason to come back. This the main difference between a blog and an essay or any other type of writing: It has to evolve, over time. And in order to do that effectively, you need someone watching.