Though the Republican coup in Raleigh hasn't been good for much, it has driven a serious spike in progressive blog readership, including readership here at BlueNC. A year ago, we were hovering around 3000 unique visitors each week; today that number has more than doubled. That amounts to more than 20,000 unique visitors each month.
People seem to come for all kinds of reasons. Some are lurkers, some are frequent posters, others are "likers," some are spammers, and still others are here only to disrupt. For those with a genuine desire to learn, share, and be part of a community, here's a collection of tips and tricks that you may want to consider.
Write as often as you want. Today's target rich environment is bigger than any of us can handle individually. If you see something interesting that should be shared, do a quick post and see what happens. Feel free to explore the whole range of posting options: long form, short form, images, videos, information graphics, quizzes, whatever. And don't feel obliged to write a dissertation every time. Short hits with good links tend to get more traction.
The front page is reserved for posts specifically about North Carolina. If you want to write about a national or international topic, make an NC connection and it might make the front page. Otherwise, it'll show up on the Second Front.
Like and tweet. BlueNC has a symbiotic relationship with Facebook and Twitter. Front page posts are automatically ported over to Facebook. Whatever you think of Facebook, we believe this is generally a good thing because it expands the reach of our content to a much more expansive audience. Also, you can log in through Facebook too. We understand the insidious nature of that practice.
Sentence case. As a person with design OCD, I tend to be rigid about styling. (It's a curse; I'm channeling my inner Aldona Wos.) The official "style" for BlueNC is sentence case. That means only first words and proper nouns are capitalized. Headlines should look like this. Not Like This. If you'll go along with this style, it'll be easier and quicker for us to front-page your posts. It will also make me happy.
We're always looking for help. BlueNC is a labor of love. We are not trying to make money and we don't. We have a small handful of community members who keep the place running, in addition to the wonderful content contributions of people who have simply arrived and jumped in. Some of those folks are officially designated as "front pagers." That means they can move posts (including their own) to the front page, and can also help moderate spammers and food fights. If you are interested in becoming a BlueNC front page administrator, let me know.
I'm sure there are lots of things I'm missing, but in the spirit of less is more, I'll stop.
Thanks for being here.