This post is for bloggers who worry about the shrinking size of their Technorati. If that includes you, I have the magic potion that will boost your “authority” almost overnight. It works every time. I guarantee it.
Yep. It’s that simple. Become an evangelist for blogging, and convince others to do it regularly. But you must do more than coax people into blogging. You must make them do it — you know — my way or the highway.
That’s what we do at Kent State. Students blog or they fail. We know it’s coercion, but we don’t care. In fact, we’re damned proud our “blog or die” policy. It gets results.
Don’t want to blog? No problem. Kent State has over 300 other majors from which you can choose. But if you want a public relations degree, we insist that you develop an in-depth knowledge of social media and that you put your work out there for all the world to see and to critique.
Can you understand social media by simply studying them? I suppose you can. But you won’t grasp the “zen” of Web 2.0 until you become one with the medium. Social media are part of public relations practice, and we want our students to experience them beyond the superficial worlds of Facebook or MySpace. In the process, they learn about the blogosphere, and they learn how to write for an online audience.
Many students find their “voice” for the first time as bloggers in JMC 48003. All of them grow as writers.
At least half of the students in any given semester don’t like the blogging, and it shows. The other half seem downright giddy about it. Powered by ego or maybe just youthful enthusiasm, they post weekly (some more often), and in the process they build another element for their professional portfolios.
And you know me — I nail ‘em for every error in grammar and punctuation. Because careful writing matters here at Kent State, even if it doesn’t in the blogosphere. This is part of the portfolio, after all.
So what does this have to do with the size of your Technorati?
When you teach people to blog, most are so grateful that they add you to their blogrolls. I don’t require that students link to ToughSledding, but so far this semester, 11 of the 16 have done so. And that is, in part, why my Technorati “authority” has increased 20% this past one month. I tell you, it’s better than yohimbe.
Check ‘em out. You’ll find links to our student bloggers in a new box I added just yesterday. Most on the “Student Bloggers Spring ’08” are seniors or second-year grad students, and many will soon be looking for jobs! They all have email links on their blogs, so contact them if you have an opening.
Here are my favorite students posts from the past week:
- At “Green PRactices,” Desiree tells us about the “greening” of the booze business — and she ain’t talkin’ about St. Patrick’s Day. Seems that even the brewers and distillers are getting in on the “green” movement.
- At PRVitamins, Julie reminisces about a youth-targeted PR campaign that changed her life. It’s a great lesson in public relations and how it can positively affect the lives of children.
- At the “PR Affair,” Arielle discusses the lack of diversity in the business of high fashion. She got me thinking about the role PR must play in promoting diversity in every business we represent.
- And speaking of fashion, Patti’s sports-focused blog “Penalty Flag Down!” commends the NBA for cleaning up its image by insisting that players dress the part.
Alumni Bloggers. I’ve also added a blogroll with links to PRKent alumni. Only 3 of the six discovered blogging in our classrooms. The others took up this deranged hobby of their own accord!