Everyone know’s Chris Brogan‘s famous analogy of a blog being like your home, where you invite people back to, and your Social Media profiles being like outposts where you meet those people in the first place.
But if your blog is REALLY your home, then the implications are deeper than just bringing them to a place where you can show off your content in order to get your ego stroked.
Chris recently pointed out a few ideas when discussing “Rethink Your Web Presence” – which I’ve taken and extended to what I think are the deeper implications is your blog is your home. Consider that:
1. When people go to a diner party, they ask “who here is like me?” It is a safety thing. When we design our church experiences, we are always aware that when people enter a church room (or networking room, or any room where there are unknowns), they immediately ask “who here is like me?” – it is a safety thing. Faces are a great way to virtually show that people here are like you – to grant Social Authority – which is what Facebook’s social plugins are doing.
2. People want to know, “why am I here?” You need to show/tell them what is happening and what is next, as any good host does. Sign post me – lead me – guide me. Again, this is safety, because I can relax if I know you are taking care of things. If you bring me to your blog and you say upfront it is about selling then I’m cool with that if I know it upfront. But don’t trick me.
3. People want to talk to you. You don’t invite someone to your house and then don’t entertain them when they talk to you. This is why I can’t stand people who ask “What do you think” and then don’t reply to their comments, as I discuss here. Being a good host is about drawing conversation out of people – for help with this, read Sy Taylor’s view and Robin Dickinsons’s view.
4. People want it to be about US, not them or you. A good home and a good dinner party is social (if you don’t know what that means, read this excellent peice by my latest intern.) You don’t go to someone’s home in order to stroke their ego, hear all about how wonderful they are, and then be ignored when you want to talk to them. I don’t want to be sold when I go to your house, either.
5. Diaries. When are you coming over next? If you’ve provided a good experience, how are we taking it further?
In reality, I wonder if most blogs are actually more like a restaurant, or to be honest, just a sales front.