Wednesday, December 01, 2010

Magazines As Inspiration for Blogs

I've noticed a trend lately with some top bloggers, who are referencing magazines not only as creative sources for blogposts, but ways to foster creativity and engagement. Over on Copyblogger, Brian Clark used Cosmo headlines to create a little exercise for his readers. He discussed writing your headlines first as a way to "promise" something that your copy will fulfill. This also helps the writer focus on priorities and keeping the text concise and targeted. He took headlines and challenges readers to come up with matching blog posts. Pretty creative, and he got some good interaction going too.

Just last week, Chris Brogan published, "Which Magazine Are You?",  the idea being that the more focused your are in your business, the more you know what magazine you would be. Makes sense! He wrote: "If you can answer which magazine you are, you can answer where you would prefer to spend your time. You can also answer which kinds of blog topics would keep you satisfied. You can answer who your audience is. There’s a lot in that one answer, isn’t there?"

And just tonight, Darren Rowse over at Problogger used the Australian edition of Marie Claire and took lessons from the cover to illustrate specific points to readers, such as:

1. People like to read about people (hint: publish interviews)
2. Think "seasonal," especially when you want to help lift people out of the winter doldrums
3. New research is always of interest, particularly when focused in aging and youth
4. Pay attention to layout, headlines, graphics -- these can all be great ideas for your blog design, regardless of topic

So, all that leads me to wonder....what magazine would my blog be? I have to think about that one. There are many magazines I enjoy, inlcuding Real Simple, The New Yorker, Poets and Writers, and others. How about you? What's your favorite magazine, and does it influence your blog?

By the way, I didn't realize Darren had a video to go along with his post until I hopped over to his home page to grab the link (I think the video probably came first, as I know he has all his videos transcribed), so here's the video below!

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