When friends or neighbors ask about what I do they’ll often ask, “what is a blog?”This isn’t always easy to explain because some folks think I’m talking about article writing when I’m referring to blogging.
The line between blogging and article writing has gotten a little blurry over the past few years. Now with so many people looking to cash in on the web content writing craze or build online communities, they’re placing ads for bloggers without even knowing the difference.
What is a blog?
Blog is short for “weblog.” The first blogs were lists of links shared on a personal website. Soon they evolved into personal journals. Nowadays there are still many personal blogs, but professional bloggers do more than share personal thoughts. They teach and encourage. A blog is also an effective marketing tool.
A blog is a series of chronologically written posts, usually the newest first. Blog posts are written in a casual tone geared towards creating a discussion around the topic. Most blogs are made up of personal commentary and opinion, so they’re generally one-sided. Comments are encouraged on blogs, the more the merrier. Because so many content purveyors are hiring bloggers, they’re not necessarily personal anymore. Many blogs are started to create brand awareness or build up community around a product or service. The people who hire bloggers generally prefer a blogger’s casual tone to more antisceptic copy. Blogs are only web-based.
How is blogging different from article writing?
An article is based on fact rather than opinion. There’s no room for personal commentary on an article, instead the writer is to present all sides of a story. Articles are more authoritative but they’re not personal. While While bloggers write within their realm of expertise, articles tend to be more heavily researched. Article writers interview expert sources and read books and magazines to present the facts. Articles are also more heavily edited and the tone isn’t so casual. Articles aren’t only web-based, they’re also found in newspapers, magazines, newsletters and more. Many web based articles also allow commenting and discussion.
What are some of the differences you see between blog posts and articles?
Check out Blogging for a Living for tips for becoming a successful professional blogger. We took a brief hiatus but are returning shortly to discuss setting up and creating a blog, choosing a niche, and generally making a living as a blogger.