Blogging and social media: The Unofficial Guide of Do’s and Don’ts.

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Top Secret

The Unofficial Guide

My confession; twenty months ago I didn’t know what a blogger was. Glad to say that has changed and today I do consider myself a part-time sporadic blogger. Do I love blogging? The simple answer is yes. Why do I love blogging? In one word; connecting. Connecting with others that relate to the words I have written in a post and vice versa. I too connect with the words written by another blogger.  Sometimes an avid discussion may occur in the comments, different points of view offer insights into a topic I may have just been discussing solely from what I know. In hearing a variety of opinions; it helps my work, my studies and opens my mind to what readers are thinking and feeling on particular subjects. It gives me a bigger picture. It shows me what it may be like in someone else’s shoes.

Amazingly I receive  a fair amount of emails asking me questions about blogging. Hence this post. As far as I am aware there are still NO blogging rules.  There are thousands of social media posts that state they have the blogging rules yet many seem to miss the main point of blogging which I personally believe and that’s connecting with your readers on a level that is genuine and honest. So what I’m saying next is no Holy Grail but points I have found useful and it may answer some of my readers questions. I am not recommending any particular solutions, apps, plugins because that is way out of my comfort zone and knowledge. I am not avery organised person and much like my life I blog a bit all over the place and fleet from one subject to the next, you can take what you like from this post or take nothing at all.

 

Unofficial Blogging  My Do’s and Don’ts

  1. Captcha sucks

    Captcha sucks

    Don’t have Captcha on your blog. Do find another method of preventing spam or moderating comments. Captcha stops many readers from commenting, some are impossible to read especially on a phone.

  2. Do respond to comments if you have time. It is appreciating your reader and a connection. Everyone is looking for some kind of connection.
  3. Do jump in and write about the major controversial topics – the headlines but don’t jump in all the time. It can drain and consume you.
  4. Do acknowledge another blogger if their blog post prompted your current blog post and let that blogger know via twitter or email, this is manners.
  5. Don’t copy and take other bloggers photos or quotes and pass them of as your own with no credit back to the source.
  6. Don’t keep looking for the optimum time to post there isn’t one. Do hit publish at any time social media is 24/7.
  7. Do join link parties for more readers. Don’t join link parties and not comment on the other linked up posts.
  8. Do have a plugin that helps readers share your post, some may not comment and a share is great. Don’t harass a reader to share.
  9. Do look at where your comments are from is it mainly other bloggers or people that don’t blog.
  10. Don’t keep looking at numbers, it really is about quality over quantity. Do keep writing and connecting.
  11. Do check with PR company when doing a sponsored post how may other bloggers are on the same campaign. It would be great to see sponsored posts/giveways on the same topic spread out a little :)

 

Unofficial  Twitter Do’s and Don’t

  1. Don’t have automated Direct Message as a personal blogger because there is nothing personal about it. I understand social media and businesses using it as they are selling a service.
  2. Don’t be an egg head. Do have a photo, logo, any thing but an egg head.
  3. Don’t just have your blog link there. Do have a brief bio. I want to know a little bit about who you are before we connect.
  4. Don’t get offended if you don’t always get response when you tweet someone. Twitter is similar to a very busy party, sometimes you stay, sometimes you observe, sometimes you just drop in and leave. Therefore some tweets get missed, some may be ignored, it should not be a big deal. If you feel personally upset that someone does not respond to your tweets, unfollow or keep trying but don’t take it personally.
  5. Don’t have your Facebook and Twitter linked. It creates double tweets. The link does not always work “error finding page”. You cannot LIKE on Twitter, so when you have an update on Facebook that stay click LIKE or LINK in the comments, neither of these actions can be actioned on Twitter.
  6. Don’t have full on accusation/slanging matches on Twitter. Do follow on if you feel the need in private, there is email.
  7. Don’t succumb to buying followers or  following team follow backs. YES people buy followers. It increases their statistics for their media kits and for PR work. For me they lose their credibility and a genuine follower. When you jump from a small number of followers to 10,000 overnight, something sits uneasy with me. I appreciate it may be difficult to keep track of who follows you but having over 50% Fake followers will not increase your readership. Tiny Savages has a great post here that goes into more depth with further links. To check your current status of followers  http://fakers.statuspeople.com

    1% Fake

    1% Fake

  8. Don’t keep asking for RT’s. If your post connects with someone they know they can RT. Do ask for RT’s for charities, abused kids, lost kids etc..
  9. Do keep sourcing for readers, they are not all on Twitter. There are many bloggers on Twitter, personally I struggle to write my own posts and reading other blogs.
  10. Do RT when you like a post or an update. Personally I don’t tweet a blogger to say I commented on their post, they can see that on their own blog post.

 Facebook Do’s and Don’t

  1. Don’t snap shot another pages quotes. Do use the SHARE button which gives credit where credit is due.
  2. Don’t take someone else’s quote and make up your own picture using their quote.
  3. Do read a question thoroughly. Do give advice, don’t give judgement.
  4. Don’t keep posting on someone else wall all about your business or blog. Do message them and ask if they can share for you.
  5. Don’t believe that if you block/unfriend someone they cannot see your updates, they can if they try hard enough.
  6. Do check your age setting on your Facebook page if linked to your blog. Not all Facebook updates and linked blogs are appropriate for a kid to stumble upon.
  7. Don’t just add a blog link once a week. Do interact with your likers. Your likers are your readers.
  8. Do have fun with your updates. Do ask questions. Don’t be down on numbers connecting is more important.
  9. Don’t over analyse that your lost some likers after an update or blog post.
  10. Do shout out some of your favourite pages. Don’t shout out and expect a return shout out. Do things out of kindness and no expectations.

 

Please fee free to add anything to the lists, or if I am totally out of touch with what I have said  please let me know.

Are you going to check who you followers are ? 

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Nathalie Brown

Child Behaviour Consultant at Easy Peasy Kids
Child Behaviourist and researcher. Creator of "Less tantrums. More smiles". I look at the bigger picture and think outside the box when working with children and their behaviour. Their world is different. As adults we sometimes forget this. Happiness Creator in my spare time. Eater of chocolate and cake.

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Comments

  1. Nathalie, I found this post so useful. As a new blogger (6 months since my first post) and tweeter (2 weeks since my first tweet) the information in this post is relevant and informative. I am still learning to navigate the social media channels and you’ve answered some questions for me. So, thanks!
    Michaela Fox recently posted…Judgement is swiftMy Profile

  2. I agree with the controversial blog topic and the sponsored post one. I’m happy to read commentary on a social issue but I dont want to be overloaded with it – the online news sites do enough of this. If I’ve read it over there Im probably less likely to read another post about it. Same with sponsored posts – Im happy to read a review but not 10 reviews of the same product on the same day.
    On a another note there is a lot of sharing via blogs, I think providing some links to mental health services or services that provides tips/support might be a nice way for bloggers to help the communities that read their words. Just in case something is upsetting or difficult for them to read about. Nice summary x
    Sarah recently posted…Whats the balance?My Profile

    • Hi Sarah, I have noticed some bloggers provide links to services but it would be great to see more of them. I’ll definitely add to any of mine that I feel may need them. Thanks for reading x

  3. Great post. There is a lot there that is so true, especially the copying of others work and not giving credit. There is so much of it happening. People say that imitation is the most sincere form of flattery but when it comes down to it’s really not. To find something that you’ve worked hard on, on another site, without any link backs feels like you’re being ripped off.
    I think we forget sometimes what social media is..it’s about being social. I think a rule to stick to, one I stick to myself, don’t say anything online that you wouldn’t say to the person IRL. Things always have a way of finding their way back to the person. If you have an issue, face it, don’t facebook it!
    Tegan recently posted…Self WorthlessMy Profile

    • Tegan it’s exactly what you say. Although I do give benefit of the doubt and wonder may be they didn’t know they can’t just do that ie:copy it still bugs me. I have contacted people directly they’ve always had an excuse so I’ve asked they remove my words from their post or poster. Yes have an issue take up directly and privately.

  4. Thank you Nathalie – this post hassle me feel so much better. As a fairly new blogger/tweeter I’m always so worried I might accidentally do the wrong thing and offend someone! Such great advice!!! Robyn x

  5. ‘Don’t be an egghead’ – I love that one!

  6. Thanks for the link back Nat. I wish I had these tips starting off, I fear I got a few things wrong. I promise I never asked for a RT though! (seriously does that happen?)
    Carli recently posted…When blogging’s lost its shine.My Profile

    • I got heaps wrong at the start and I still do but as long as I keep learning from them and admitting when I’m wrong then I think that’s the right path. RT’s requests definitely and heaps of other stuff I’m saving that for another post x

  7. Hi Nathalie,
    I really enjoyed this post as it confirms that I’ve been playing along by the unofficial rules since I fired up a month ago ~ phew!
    Just wondering about frequency of tweeting your latest post however, I notice most bloggers do this multiple times throughout the day/week. Is this cool?

    • Hi Katie, good question I automate the frequency of sharing a post using Hootsuite. I tweet out my post numerous times as I don’t blog on a regulars basis I feel it’s good to get it out there. It may also depend on the number of followers therefore the more followers you have and the more spread out they are around the world the more you tweet the higher chance there is of it being read. So on a coolness factor unfortunately it’s probably zero as it reappears so often in in twitter timeline :)

  8. Great list. Thanks Lovely x.

  9. Helpful post even though I’ve been blogging for close to three years, there’s still lots here that I need to improve on like responding to commenters and reading and commenting on other blogs. I followed a tweet here, already forgot the handle (pardon my short-term memory loss!) but I shall go retweet now to acknowledge.

    Gosh and yes, please everyone say no to captcha! At least the arithmetic ones are kinda useful!
    Cheryl from BusinessChic recently posted…Business Chic on Instagram: anteledaisyMy Profile

  10. Denyse Whelan says:

    Hi Nat, what a good idea this is. Such wise and helpful advice. Oh I cannot fathom “copying” or “plagiarism” that I have read is happening in this ever burgeoning field of media- the blog. Whilst I’ve not encountered it I imagine it must be tough on the original content maker to see hard yards of research & writing replicated. I’ve been on twitter now for almost 3 years. I was afraid to join in at first back in 2010 as I “knew no one & certainly no-one from education” lucky for me I’ve met many many Tweeps now IRL ( yourself included of course!) and that’s the magic of social media for me. Connections! Just that. Love D xx

    • Genuine connections so critical in forging honest relationships both on line and IRL. There is magic in that let’s not have it clouded over by a race for numbers. Hope you are well gorgeous x

  11. Great blogging tips there. Thank you. Two questions I have 1. What other spammer prevention ideas wld you suggest, 2. Aside from discus is there another way to respond to comments so readers know you have responded. I comment on a lot of blogs but would never know if there was a connection or not. Similarly on my own blog I don't respond much anymore ecause no one will receive it unless they return, and most people don't, due to time I guess.

    • Hi Kim, I use bullet proof security for spam and luv comment for comments. It gives people the option to tick a box if they want to see your response. I respond to comments as they may come back you never know. Check Problogger site for more info and tips. Thanks for stopping by x

  12. Great list thanks Nathalie. Glad to see I haven’t stepped on too many toes in my short blogging time. Like Katie above I have wondered at how frequently to tweet links to a new post. I have a strong desire to tweet like crazy in an attempt to get readers but likewise don’t want to annoy people. I saw a tweet saying that more than 3 times was desperate and annoying and it has out me off putting my posts out there too often. I have also wondered about joining a link party but wasn’t sure about how to do this. Do I just ask to join? I feel like a nervous primary school kid asking a group if I can join in!

    • I’d say tweet your post as much as you like twitter is a social media tool, like I said to Kate if you have heaps of followers then tweet it more often. Most linky parties you don’t need to ask you sign up at the bottom of their blog post, and add their Link logo to your blog post to show you are participating. It should be easy to follow the instructions on their blog post :)

  13. Possibly the best non-official social media etiquette guide I’ve ever read. Thanks!
    Emily recently posted…Some people are named very appropriatelyMy Profile

  14. Great article! I always love a “do and do not” list – easy to ready and easy to follow
    Just used your link to check my twitter followers – 97% Good! yay!!
    xx
    Josefa @always Josefa recently posted…A new chapter, but no wordsMy Profile

  15. Good advice on not linking FB to Twitter. It just doesn’t work and can be annoying. Happy to say only 1% of my followers are fake. Must see if I can find and block them. I’m pretty brutal about blocking inappropriate followers.

  16. Great list of do’s and don’ts. I also try to drop by and comment on the blogs of my regular commenters. I find a lot of fab bloggers that way too.
    Bronnie recently posted…Stuck into schoolMy Profile

  17. A great post Natalie. Glad to report that reading blogs is one of my favourite things to do so I’m a frequent commenter :-)
    Robomum recently posted…I Heart Chrissie SwanMy Profile

  18. Excellent tips Nathalie. I agree to all of those tips, so needed a rehash on some of them too. How do you feel about pinterest being linked to Twitter? I’m doing it but I’m worried that I’m annoying my readers!
    Penny recently posted…Fish for Kids: The Benefits of Fish as PetsMy Profile

  19. Fantastic guide :-) So many great rules to share!

  20. thanks for this very helpful guide – Im new to all of this and am scared I’ll accidentally do something wrong:-) especially when re-tweeting or trying to share something you’ve loved by someone else…

  21. Fantastic list Nat! I haven’t been able to embrace twitter and only just getting started on FB for the blog so your tips were really helpful! Thanks for sharing your thoughts x
    Jodie recently posted…Fine Motor Fun for Challenging Days!My Profile

  22. I like your do’s and don’ts! Very simple overview and gives you a good idea of what to think about. Great!
    Marko Saric recently posted…How To Track Niche Blogs And Build A Contact DatabaseMy Profile

  23. I think I made a lot of mistakes with my first blog and it seems to quickly spiral out of control, I felt like I couldn’t keep up with expectations – too many fingers in too many pies. I can see a lot of what I did in this list. I made a lot of changes with my new blog, approached it from a totally different perspective and I love blogging now.

    This is such a fabulous list :D
    Kate – An Everyday Story recently posted…A Love Like No OtherMy Profile

    • Brilliant to read you love blogging, it can be overwhelming at times but we only have ourselves to answer too, sometime we push ourselves far too much, good to see you are happy now.

  24. Great post – all valid and excellent points!! Nice to read it and nod in agreement (and get the end and go phew I am on track!). Thanks for sharing :-)
    Kate recently posted…Chitty Chitty Bang Bang ReviewMy Profile

  25. Awesome post Nathalie. Personally I hope official blog rules don’t come about though because I think it will curtail the freedom that blogging is. Best it’s kept at that level of ‘social rules’, the unwritten kind where we all give frowns and shake the finger to each other if one is broken. :-)
    Thanks for writing this one up.

  26. Excellent ,no nonsense tips Nathalie. Thank for sharing.

  27. I think this is pretty darn close to the Holy Grail Nat! Awesome advice. Some of these things I hadn’t even considered & I’ve been blogging for nearly 3 years!

  28. These a some really great, thought-out tips Nat. I’m not the best at following all of them but definitely avoid big no-no’s!! Fi xx

  29. Love this NAT! The only thing I think I differ from this list is the quotes as images. I love sharing the wisom of others with my followers. I source the quotes from different places, books, internet etc, and I do sometimes put them together on an image with credit to the Author….sometimes I just share the quote as text…say in a status update. And sometimes I share pics others have made…but it can be very hard to tell sometimes where the source is…this is part of the challenge I find with sourcing content…Pretty much all of my blog is my own original content but I do use shareable stuff on social media.

    I’ve looked into this, and there aren’t any clear cut guidlines…there is the fair dealing under copyright…but I’m not sure it covers this sort of thing to be honest…plus phrases are generally too short to attract copyright protection…but I’m starting to rethink things as I learn more about it.

    At the end of the day, the only way to be absolutely certain of not infringing copyright is only using my own content 100% of the time…but in some ways that takes a lot of the joy out of the internet/social media…AND PINTEREST! I’m still trying to wade my way through it all…

    Love chatting about this sort of thing and see how others run their social media pages etc.

  30. Hi,
    I am so new to this that I do not know what RT is. Can someone please tell me? I am glad to find this article as I am in the process of having a web site created. All this information will come in handy.

    Thanks!

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