Blogging Tips: How to write better posts

Category: Blogging -

Writing blog posts comes naturally to some people, but some struggle to write and convey their message effectively. Following some of the tips below, can improve your blog posts’ quality.

Get to the point, will you?

It’s very important that you get to the point in the first few sentences of your blog post. If you cannot do that (perhaps the topic is too broad) then at least give an abstract of what you will be talking first. This is to get the attention of the reader from the beginning, and to give them the idea on what the blog post will be all about.

So, don’t write few paragraphs building a base for your punchline in your post. Leaving the most important part of the post to the end is a bad idea. Unless you are some politician or celebrity, you want to grow your blog’s readership and reach, and by beating around the bush in your blog posts, you will only hinder your blog’s growth. Because new readers generally don’t read posts that they don’t know what it is talking about, and they don’t have the time to to figure out what it’s talking about by reading few paragraphs.

Use simple words

If your blog is about helping others or teaching them, or sharing your experiences so that they can benefit from it. Then you have to use simple words that everyone can understand. For example, if you have these two different words with a similar meaning to describe a man “sagacious” and “wise“. You should choose “wise man“.

You know what I am talking about right? Again, you don’t have to unnecessarily degrade your speech with primitive words. This is not meant by “using simple words”. It depends on your audience as well. But all else equal, you have to pick words that won’t confuse your readers or won’t make them think what the word means. Try your best to make your sentences flow smooth. full details »

Forrester: Company blogs are the least trusted source of info

Category: Blogging, Startups -

Forrester has an interesting report on “sources of information” and how much people trust them. You can see the results in the diagram below. As you can see, the least trusted source of information is the corporate blogs. With all the “corporate blogging” taking off… at least among Fortune 500 companies, this is a huge information to swallow for the corporate bloggers.

However, on the positive side, now that the companies know people do not trust their blog posts, they can start working on various solutions to make their corporate blogging work.

trust_source.png

How can they make it work?

  • Well, perhaps they could use the blog not only to communicate but also to get feedback from their customers and to start building strong community.
  • To genuinely listen to the comments, and provide quick solutions to the problems.
  • Instead of just re-posting press releases on the blogs (i.e too formal), maybe they could choose an informal approach and be closer to their blog readers.
  • Top management should be actively involved in blogging as well. This has many advantages; one – it would make the posts more authoritative. two- people would be more willing to listen to and believe CEO than any other executive. and three – it would have a multiplier effect on the company, because if CEO replies a commenter and says “we will do it”, this would actually turn into an action. So, by just replying to comments CEO would actually be improving company’s products.
  • …etc.

Companies should definitely try to get this report and study it if they can.

When will the Hour be established?

Category: Islam -

Picture below is an aerial view of Dubai City. As you can see the buildings are literally above the clouds. Just a few hundred years ago, Dubai and the whole of Arabian peninsula was just a desert. During that time, all you see was some mud houses, bedouins and camels. But now… this!

dubai_clouds.png

When I saw it I couldn’t help but remember the prophecy of Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him). He was asked a question by angel Jibril (Gabriel): “When will the Hour be established?”, in other words when is the Judgment Day.

Prophet said:“… When the shepherds of black camels start boasting and competing with others in the construction of higher buildings. And the Hour is one of five things which nobody knows except Allah.” (Volume 1, Book 2, Hadith No:47)

Subhan’Allah, what a vivid description of the above picture by the prophet.

This was prophesied more than 1,400 years ago. And it’s just one of many prophecies of prophet Muhammad (pbuh) regarding the coming of the Last Day, including the Second Coming of Prophet Isa (Jesus).

The Hour is indeed near!

Gmail: How to find all “unread” messages in “inbox”

Category: Tips -

I have just done a cleanup of my Gmail inbox. For the first time it’s showing “2 Unread Messages” andinbox_unread.png not “100+ Unread Messages“.

How do I feel? Feel like I had a haircut after 6 months, no no, feel like I just shaved my head ;) Yeah it’s that good to see so few unread messages in my Gmail.

Two little Gmail search strings and a lot of courage helped me to achieve this result. A lot of courage – because some of the emails I intentionally marked “unread” so that I could reply to them when I have a spare time. But the spare time somehow never came ;) and by now, it was too late to reply to them anyway.

As for the two little search strings, they were:

  1. is:unread for listing unread messages.     2)   in:inbox for listing messages in inbox

Used together as is:unread in:inbox in the search field, it will list all the unread emails in your inbox.

full details »