We were going to say 'blogging is like brushing your teeth' - but twice a day is keen, even for really dedicated #scicomm aficionados. MWC's mascot Winnie (the biggest #fishfan we know!) gets a good brushing about once a week, and that's about what to aim for if you're developing a go-to, must-read blog. So: regularity is key - but what are the other ingredients for a clickable blog?
Cat maintenance metaphors aside, our team has pulled together a handful of tips for great blogging, and a list of the blogs we're clicking onto every week at MWC.
Our 3(ish) golden rules are:
1. Your content is your selling point: Hashtags and hyped up topics are all great, but if you truly want to stand out and contribute to your field of expertise, you need to give your content some serious thought. Make a simple synopsis for your post where you raise two or three important points, look over your use of language and simplify. Very few people are keen on reading a thesis on your topic of interest, so simplify where you can and hey – the more you can break your topic down, the more content you generate for upcoming blogs!
2. Find your own voice: You now have a short synopsis of what you want – sweet! The next step is to write it in a comprehensible, engaging way. This is where research comes in handy – read up on your audience, engage with people who have written on the same topic, borrow the good things and improve on the flaws. #Scicomm is about making dense and difficult topics as engaging and accessible as possible so have fun and don’t be afraid to think outside the box!
3. Visuals, visuals, visuals! Our final tip is relatively simple but something many people fail to engage with – the visual aspect of communication. Building a neat, easily navigated, and visually aesthetic blog or website is easier than ever before with websites like Tumblr, WordPress and Blogger offering beautiful templates which are free to use and easy to master. Here is a neat guide to the best blogging platforms out there. And if you’re still unsure of how to proceed then we are always around to help with that.
You might invest ridiculous amounts of time making sure your content is great but if the visuals fail to deliver then all your hard work will go to waste, so make sure that the visuals make your text justice. And for the love of God – SPELL-CHECK EVERYTHING!
Blogs we love to read:
Through the Gaps: The beating heart of the Newlyn fishing community! ThroughTheGaps lets you track vessels, catch up on the latest marine projects and gives you a unique insight to a beautiful community while highlighting political issues affecting fishermen... all bundled in with amazing photography, insightful commentary and fresh market news!
East Coast Avocet: Let Mike's inimitable, lyrical style take you on a seafood journey around the UK, delving into local fishery issues, diving into regional cuisine and unearthing the stories at the heart of seafaring communities. A must-read!
A View to Sea: It might not be the most regularly updated blog on the block, but AVTS is a gem of ocean and conservation optimism. It tackles some of the most pressing issues in environmentalism with a joie de’vivre that is unparalleled. Educational and uplifting, it will brighten even the darkest of days.