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Blogging in the Non-Profit World

At a recent Skill Swap held by Moving Ideas, several bloggers from non-profit organizations shared their tips and tricks on non-profit blogging. While every non-profit blog out there isn't the same, whether because of the issues it is touching on or because of the main purpose of the blog, there are some universal tips that can be followed.

Meghan Scott of the Public Campaign Action Fund, who writes for The Daily DeLay, explained that timeliness can be important. It's a good idea to keep your blog current, especially if you have members/readers who read your blog for the most up-to-date news on your issues. It is also useful to include links to other blogs that relate to your writings. By creating a friendly relationship within the blogosphere, your own blog could see traffic driven to it as other blogs link to yours in return.

Don't use jargon or technical language in your blog. Adam Hughes, who writes for OMB Watch's Budget Blog, explains that your blog should be informal in language and prose. Depending on your blog's main focus, it can also be a great way to post quick updates about the issues you cover. That is a great way to connect with readers who may not look at the rest of your site or care to read the more technical reports or analyses you release.

A great point from David Elliot, who writes for the National Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty's Blog, is that you need to see the difference between your website and your blog. What is the point of your blog? Also, use storytelling to connect with your readers and make the work you do on certain issues more personal. You can go beyond current events and use your own experiences to give your blog a more realistic and personal feel.

Your blog is also a great place to post content that doesn't seem to fit anywhere else on your homepage. You can also use your blog to point readers to other places on your site, potentially bringing in new members or activists.

A great blog to check out is Moving Idea's Ideapolis. They frequently have guest writers from their different member organizations that blog about issues in the progressive community.

October 13, 2005 in Weblogs | Permalink

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Comments

It would definitely depend on what blogging software you are using. When people are doing a search, specific words in your URL can be helpful. But if your blog is an extension of your URL, they can find it when they search for your site or come to your site. Another great thing to do is get your blog mentioned or linked to other blogs. People will many times find other blogs by jumping from one to another. Become a part of the blogosphere and it can increase the hits on your site.

Posted by: Yvonne at Nov 15, 2005 8:40:44 AM

This is excellent and valuable information. Thank you. I have a question -- for a blog that seeks to inform a specific, targeted audience, how important is a unique or distinctive URL? Or, can it just be an extension of your website's URL? Does anyone know?

Posted by: David Henderson at Nov 14, 2005 9:28:10 AM

I just started a blog for RENEW Wisconsin at renew-energy-blog.org. Am I supposed to put key words someplace in the codes for the pages so that search engines will find the blog? How do I add the magic words.

Ed Blume
eblume@renewwisconsin.org

Posted by: Ed Blume at Oct 31, 2005 7:38:14 AM

Great tips for activists wishing to communicate through a blog.

Posted by: Rob at MiX at Oct 18, 2005 10:57:56 AM

Great advice - thanks for summarizing and sharing.

Question: Is the skills swap online or face-to-face? What exactly is it?

Posted by: Beth at Oct 14, 2005 5:48:42 AM


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