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Live from Blog World Expo 2010: Building Community On Your Blog

Mark Thompson October 14, 2010

This post are my notes from the live session at Blog World Expo in Las Vegas.  Please forgive me if I misspell anything or if some of the notes don’t make sense, as I am trying to gather as much information from each speaker as I can.
Quick Facts on the Session

* Topic: Building Community On Your Blog
* About: A blog REALLY comes alive when it has community. In this session Darren Rowse teaches the secrets of moving ‘visitors’ into ‘readers’ and ‘readers’ into ‘members’ who feel a sense of belonging to your blog and who begin to take ownership of it to help you take it to the next level.
* Speaker: Darren Rowse

Live Notes

Darren is going on to the 3rd pillar, which is Community.

He starts off by asking a question to the audience…”What was your best experience of Community? and he wanted everyone to tell the person next to them their favorite experience.

Why it’s important to build a community.

* Makes Your Site More Useful:  It allows people be interactive and the community can share their ideas and experiences.
* Social Proof Makes it Easier to Promote
* Increased Page Views (CPM Advertising)
* More Valuable to Sell More

How to Build A Community

I know its hard to make out, but basically this is a diagram that shows the life of a blog.  When you first start your blog, you are the only reader…then maybe a few family members….then a few in your industry…and it grows slowly, over time.

* Be the Community you Want to Have
* Invite Interaction (Ask Questions)
* Consider an Off-Site Community Area
* Start with Your Comments Section
* Drive Traffic to other Social Outlets (Facebook, Twitter) besides your Blog
* Write in a Personal and Engaging Tone
* Use ‘you’ and ‘we’
* Reader-centered posts
* Offer Additional Ways to Join or Become a Member
* Social Proof – Highlight Interaction/Community/Numbers
* Identify Natural Leaders -  Give Jobs, Train, and Pay Them
* Teach the Wisdom of the Crowd to Your Community
* Invite Reader Generated Content (Guest post & Compilations)
* Set Homework/Projects
* Give Your Readers a Chance to Show Off
* Involve Readers in Decisions and Change
* Be Accessible (He shows an example of how he uses Ustream for a public Q&A forum)

Dealing with Trolls

* Think about Policies and Standards Before You Need Them
* Model the Good Community
* Reward Good Behavior
* Outline Roles of Moderators Carefully and Talk About Policies, Values, and Procedures
* Marginalise Trolls (Be overly polite)
* Be Firm, Polite, and Calm with Trouble Makers

Make sure you tweet this post with the Hashtag #bwe10

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