You should spend a lot of time reading other blogs. 

Why?  Reading is a great way to identify what people are interested in, what information they missed that you can provide, and for you to develop your own writing skills by evaluating other writer’s styles.  You also stand to learn a lot.  You pick up inspiration, styles, and creative ideas. Reading helps you develop your vocabulary.  On the flip side, you see what kind of posts are BAD and it helps you avoid writing the same.

Now, here’s the quick tip:  As you read other blogs, identify blog posts that you can provide commentary on or rewrite to fit your blog. Focus on your reaction and opinion immediately after reading someone else’s content:

  • What do I agree with?
  • What do I disagree with?
  • What would I have written differently?
  • What did they leave out?
  • What did they include that I would have deleted?
  • What is my opinion about their content?
  • How could it have been better communicated?
  • How could it be rewritten with a new emphasis for my blog audience?

You can either use the other blog post as a springboard for your own original content, or use links to the original article (or excerpts) making sure to provide the source link and give credit to the other blogger.  If your blog post impresses the other blogger, you might start a mutually beneficial relationship.  It may be that your commentary presents disagreement; but that’s okay, that’s part of blogging

Don’t read past that too quickly… you have two good options: 1) taking the concepts and ideas of their original blog post, along with your thoughts on it (see the bullet list above), and then writing your own original post.

Or, 2) include excerpts from the original post (with a link back to the original!) and then write your feedback and commentary after the excerpts. 

Which option is best? That depends on your goals and audience. You know what’s best for your blog.  If you see no benefit connecting with the original blogger, Option 1 is the way to go. But, if there is some potential benefit to linking back to the original blog, then an “excerpt” approach works great.

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