The default approach bloggers use when ‘reporting news’ is to follow the same pattern as journalists do in their newspaper columns.
Breaking news on your blog is great, but that doesn’t mean your posts have to sound like news. If readers want news, they will head to CNN.com. They are at your blog because they want your original viewpoint. The fastest way to lose readers is to start regurgitating news content in a really boring fashion.
For my news blog, I often get contributions from writers who try extremely hard to copy the style of reporting shown on BBC / Times / Guardian. That’s not why readers are coming to my blog, and chances are, that’s not why readers are going towards blogs in the first place.
If you want your readers to stick around, to become a part of the community, and most of all, if you want your blog to stand out and actually build a fan base, you need to infuse your blog (and blogging) with:
- An original viewpoint (no regurgitated news, ever)
- A personality
More from Sara’s article:
The thing to remember is, popular blogs become popular because of the blogger. A good blogger shows personality even when he/she is writing about an impersonal topic. Regular readers start to feel like they know the blogger personally. Once this happens, readers form attachments and loyalties that are achievable only in a venue like blogging that highlights a writer’s personality.
Don’t make the same mistake that 99% of the other ‘news’ bloggers are making. If you’re hiring people to write for your news blog, make sure they read Sara’s article and learn that the success of the blog depends on your writing style and content – if you’re going to go down the ‘safe’ (bland) route of traditional reporting, you’ll miss out on creating a community and on building a strong, loyal readership.