This is something I struggle with. I often forget to pin things to Pinterest, even when it’s in my interests to do so.
It’s often said that pinning items on Pinterest attracts more viewers, readers, or customers. It’s also said that pinned articles have a longer shelf life than those that don’t. I haven’t noticed if either of these are true or not.
However, I don’t yet pin consistently. In a time of making changes to what I do and how I do it when it comes to this blog, this is one more thing I’m changing.
Every time I publish a post, I will pin it. Maybe after a while, I will be able to look at my stats and see a difference.
Riddle me this: Do you use Pinterest for your business/blog/writing? Have you noticed a difference when you do vs when you don’t?
I thought I would share a little peek behind the scenes and talk about how I choose pictures for blog posts.
First, I start with the topic of the blog post. If it’s a general post, I might just use a picture of me. If it’s about something specific, like this one, I know I need one that’s more relevant.
Second, I will look at the images I already have uploaded to my blog. Sometimes I can reuse one of them. I’ve done that several times. If I don’t find a usable one, I will look in the photo library of pictures I have taken.
If I don’t find a photo I want to use from my files, I have two more options. I can either take a photo or use one from the WordPress library.
It’s easy to get caught up in the image search and spend too much time on it. I’ve actually opted to publish a post without an image if I can’t find one and am short on time. I try not to do that very often, though.
Third, when I have the image in place, I finish the post. I will give it a once-over, set the category and tags, and publish or schedule the post.
That’s a little bit about how I do it things. What about you? Do you always include photos with your blog posts?
In previous posts, I’ve mentioned that I’m working with the local newspaper on some articles. I’ve been doing several interviews because of that. In the process, I’ve learned — or rediscovered — some things.
Have at least 10 questions ready.
I have discovered that if I go in with fewer than 10 questions, I don’t get enough usable material. I struggled to pull articles together. Once I figured out that I needed to ask more to get more, it became easier. One thing, though: If you ask a closed question, one that can be answered with a simple yes or no answer, ask another open question where they have to elaborate. Or ask why.
Treat the interview more like a conversation. If you go in acting like this is a formal interview, your source will be stiff and uncomfortable. They won’t open up the way you need them to. If they don;t open up, you get short answers. Getting them to open up is key to getting them to talk more about the subject at hand. Don’t be afraid to let them go on a tangent. You might be surprised at how relevant it turns out to be later on.
Take notes. Taking notes is important. It shows your source that you take them seriously and believe they will have something good to say that you will want to remember. I advocate taking notes even if you are recording your interview because batteries die and — particularly with digital recorders — recordings can be deleted or become corrupted.
When possible, record the interview. When you take notes, you use abbreviations. Sometimes you don’t remember what those abbreviations mean when you go to transcribe your notes. It is also possible that there will be too much information to take adequate notes and you risk losing a good quote if you’re not recording. There will be times when your source won’t want to be recorded, though, and you have to respect that.
People are busy. Be sure and thank them for taking the time to meet with you. If possible, follow up with a thank-you note, especially if it was a “big” interview.
There you have it. These are just a few of the things I’ve learned/rediscovered while doing interviews over the past month. Hopefully you get some benefit from it.
I have had a Skype account for quite some time. I’ve used it a few times, particularly when my nieces spent the night and Face Time wouldn’t work on my mom’s iPad.
Fast forward to a few days ago. I needed to do an interview with someone who is currently in a different country. I knew she wouldn’t want to do a phone call, international rates being what they are, so I thought we would end up having to do it via email.
She suggested Skype. I had never thought about Skype for interviews. It was a wonderful idea! The interview went very well and I’m already almost half-way finished with the article.
I know many people use Skype on a regular basis. Yes, we had a few glitches, some on my end and some on hers. Overall, it was a 20-minute conversation that would not have been possible otherwise. Now?
Now I can meet my deadline. And I got a reminder of a great tool that I need to remember to use more often.