An important thing to do when maintaining a blog is to always search for – and constantly stay aware of – unique content on the Web so that you can then share it with your audience. Recently, during one of these “unique content” searches, I came across a blog called Shedworking, self-described as “The only daily updated guide to the lifestyles of shedworkers and those who work in shed-like atmospheres.” That’s right – a blog about sheds that encourages its visitors to share descriptions and images of their sheds and shed-like workspaces.
What’s more, Shedworking also maintains a satellite blog site called Bookshelf, which is similarly updated with posts and photos, too, but specifically having to do with interesting bookshelves, bookcases and things that otherwise look like them.
What are they doing right?
Both sites definitely fulfill the aforementioned “unique content” criteria, but what’s really worth noting – and the reason for my blogging about these other blogs – is the way in which both are successfully utilizing social media and bookmarking tools to build up a global audience on what can be considered very targeted topics of discussion.
To start with, e-mail subscription and RSS feed options are two things that a visitor to either site gets exposed to right away, as both are maintained near the latest postings. Cross-linking options to Digg.com and StumbleUpon.com are located at the bottom of every post, so it’s easy for a visitor to share a post, photo, etc. with their network of friends. Also worth noting is that both sites “tweet” updates to Twitter, and maintain healthy lists of followers for each account.
Simply, all of the tools, when promoted together, make it quick and convenient for visitors to not only stay connected to both sites, but also share content from the sites as well.
The results from the utilization of social networking and bookmarking – and the commitment of the sites’ author, Alex Johnson, to constantly update the pages with new content – are rather impressive. Shedworking has been established for four years now and has nearly 1500 readers and a healthy list of email subscribers, too. It has been covered and talked about all throughout the media, including most recently a mention in Financial Times. Meanwhile, Bookshelf has been around for two years and is beginning to get its own media praise, including positive feedback from the likes of Bob Villa, The Guardian and more.
Sites like Shedworking and Bookshelf just go to show that if you have a topic for discussion, no matter what that topic happens to be, then social media is the way to go in establishing – and growing – a like-minded audience.