Connect With Twitter Friends and Give Thanks

One of the things that we learned from Tara at the Twitter workshop were hashtag conversations - what they are and how to use them. While your handle is your own Twitter account/page, #'s are topics that people are talking about.

Favorite one right now - #tweetsgiving

Head over to Twitter and join the amazing conversation and share what you are giving thanks for this holiday season. We are definitely thankful for all of you - amazing new e-friends we've had the pleasure of e-meeting online and meeting offline at the Blog Out Loud panels. Blog Out Loud has been an amazing new adventure and we are so happy to be going on it with you!

Have a great holiday!

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think about ways to spread your content
Chris Watson's Chart of 30 Free Sites for Web 2.0

One of the neatest perspectives on blogs is that because of RSS feeds, the news you want to read about comes right to your inbox. You don't have to really go out and seek your fave topics, like
small space dwelling. I spotted Chris Watson's awesome social media chart and wanted to share it with you lovely bloggers. Chris points out 30 free websites that allow you to share your content and, in turn, have your community continuing sharing the love. He writes, "This visualization was made to inform on how easily and effectively you can use the web to build an online presence through free sites, feeds and monitor progress." Yes!! While blogging may be new for some of you, also take the steps to learn about social media in general and how your own community can help share your stories and help extend your brand!

:: via Fast Company ::

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blog your neighborhood

:: i live by the beach and often talk about it on my blog, loving. living. small.
Is this small space dwelling?

not so much but the colors and textures of my city inspire my small space design. ::

one of the neat things about a blog is that you can really write about anything, even off topic to your "voice". your readers want to get to know you so share more with them! One way to share more about who you are and also to create original content is to blog about your own neighborhood. Talk about where your business is or where you live and why you love it there! Always snap photos of your surroundings for inspiration and include them in your posts. Your loyal readers will love seeing how and where you live and this gives you a break from writing all those witty and appealing posts!

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>> the heartfelt blog post and the get it done blog post

I've been blogging long enough to realize a few patterns in regards to posting content. I've asked fellow bloggers about some of these patterns and they concur. Ok, so at least I am not alone here.

One of the more interesting patterns that I have experienced is the
heartfelt blog post. I would be really inspired by something, write tons of original content that was full of witty sayings, hyperlinks and engaging questions to my readers and.....barely a response. (maybe at least in my head). The funny thing is I felt good after writing the post so the reward is definitely there.

There there's
the get it done blog post. this post is definitely short and sweet, often without much thought with the simple goal of getting a post up so you can keep your readers happy and your blog consistent. Inevitably, these posts often get a lot of traffic and interest.

Either way, continue writing your thoughtful posts and your quick and simple posts on your blog. You'll start to see your own patterns and can navigate through them as you please.

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A great Blog Out Loud evening at the 1st Twitter Workshop

Our workshop location - Patio Culture on Abbot Kinney Blvd.

A little gift for the guests - Amenity Home organic bags and a note pad (remember writing!?!)

Tara Settembre (our Twitter leader), Kim Hoang (SheSays LA Director), Rebecca

A little cheese (and more goodies)...

...and wine!

Rebecca and Megan

Last night we held our 1st Twitter workshop with talented Twitter expert, Tara Settembre of When Tara Met Blog. The group was treated to a full presentation from Tara, explaining everything from the history of Twitter, how to use Twitter, make lists, use hashtags, retweeting, search for people, follow people, get people to follow you, join directories, search for topics, how to integrate it into your business and daily routine, Twitter etiquette, and more. Seriously, this workshop was awesome and we were happy that the guests enjoyed their time, including tons of great real life networking and chatting before and after the event.


Tara Settembre of When Tara Met Blog for leading

Karla Stevens of Patio Culture for hosting

Amenity Home for the pretty bags


Frey Wine for the yummy organic wine

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New Oxford of America Dictionary's Word of the Year

I heard a news story tonight that the New Oxford of America Dictionary's word of the year is "unfriend" which means to remove someone as a friend on a social network, like Facebook or Twitter. This definitely goes to show that social media and the online presence has made a serious impact on mainstream culture.

Blog Out Loud Interview:
Stephanie J of N.E.E.T. Magazine


We discovered visual and inspiring online magazine, N.E.E.T., this Fall and fell in love with imagery and style. We quickly popped over to the blog which was also full of great posts and images as well. To our surprise, the blog had only been live for, oh, about 1 month! Wow!! We emailed the editor, Stephanie, and asked her to participate in a Blog Out Loud interview and we were thrilled when she agreed to share her story. Oh, and she's an accomplished designer so if you need a little website built or logo designed, check her portfolio out - it's amazing!

You launched N.E.E.T. magazine in 2005, which "is an eco-friendly, grassroots style bible for the digital age." We are insanely inspired by your magazine! Although you've been online for a while, you just started a blog this September. What inspired you to start a blog and how are you enjoying it?
I wanted to keep interest in N.E.E.T. between its quarterly issues and, as in every issue I feature a new set of designers and artists to keep the content fresh and showcase more designers, I wanted a place to catch up with past contributors. It's great to have a daily creative outlet, and to see that people are still creating, years since N.E.E.T. first found them.

Your blog is already full of great content! How did you jump in to posting content and how have you made time to post?
I'm constantly on the internet! And I love to revisit past shops and sites that were featured in the magazine, so it's a natural extension for me to create a blog for N.E.E.T. Making the magazine is a full time job, but I can always find time for a blog post.

How did you design the look of your blog? (It looks great!) What were 3 things that were important for you to have on your blog? (i.e. sponsorship areas, sidebar widgets, custom header, etc)
It's an instinctual process for me - I like the way the content flows, reading from left to right - and I've kept the dimensions of images posted on the blog the same as N.E.E.T., to keep continuity between them. It was important to have an advertising area on the blog to give more exposure to shops and designers; thumbnail links for all the past issues; and easy navigation to info on N.E.E.T., and its external links (Facebook, Myspace etc)

With the addition of your blog, have you already started to see new connections and/or networking opportunities for your brand, N.E.E.T.?
It's great to connect with other blogs in a way that the magazine can't - on sites such as Bloglovin, Independent Fashion Bloggers, Twitter. I've done a few ad swaps with my favourite blogs, which helps get the word out.

Thanks, Stephanie J!  Definitely check out N.E.E.T. magazine and support this creative venture!! And, of course, the N.E.E.T. blog as well.

Check out more Blog Out Loud Interviews:

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Still time to RSVP for the Twitter Workshop on Monday!

We have 3 spaces left for the Twitter, Wine and Cheese workshop this Monday at Patio Culture in Venice. The workshop feature social media guru, Tara Settembre of When Tara Met Blog, leading the group in all the Twitter how-to's you need to extend your brand further then you can imagine.

When: Monday, 11/16, 7pm - 9pm

Where: Patio Culture in Venice, CA

Fee: $40/cost of workshop

What do you need to bring: a laptop computer is optional.

RSVP: workshop@blogoutloudevent.com

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Take a Blogging Break & Enjoy Your Physical Space
SheSays Event 11.11.09

I attended a great panel on Wednesday that was hosted by SheSays, an awesome organization for women empowering women! (I was honored to speak on their last panel)

The panel was called "Let's Get Physical" and was about appreciating and enjoying one's physical space - whether an in-person interaction, flipping through a real book, enjoying a museum, etc. The main idea was that so much of our life is online now that we can sometimes dismiss the physical nature of things. So what are we missing? Real physical energy and drive.

The panel was full of creative ladies who have created a balance of working online and making time for offline. It's so important in the blogging world to really shut down the computer and get out. (Yes, that means turning off the iphone too, friends!) So next time you are feeling restless or need that break - take it! Go on a walk, meet a friend for coffee, head to your local music store and listen to music there, just enjoy your physical space and your creative juices will keep flowing.

And the event also had the best party project ever - make your own headbands. The ladies of Academy of Archivists (also hosts and super talented creative people) created a fabulous workstation for all of the guests to enjoy! Check out my gold headband with black feathers - yum!

For more about SheSays, click right here. And the founders of SheSays are smack in the middle of a kickstartr push so SUPPORT THEM!!! Click here for their kickstartr page and spread the word!!


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Blog Out Loud TV presents:
The 3rd BOL sponsored by Wiredrive 10.14.09

The video highlights from the 3rd Blog Out Loud event are now live! Sponsored and produced by Wiredrive, the evening was geared specifically for the advertising industry to encourage the building of the advertising blog community. It was an awesome evening with well over 100 guests and fantastic sponsors. Read all of the sponsors and panelists right here and watch the video, edited at Therapy and produced by Wiredrive, above or right here.

Check out more highlights from past Blog Out Loud events at Blog Out Loud TV.

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Primp Your Post

Just when you thought you had the perfect looking post, isn't it nice to know with a little primping you can jooszh your post into the beyond perfect? Thanks to typographer and illustrator, Jessica Hische, over at Daily Drop Cap, you can do just that.
Daily Drop Cap is an ongoing project that provides a daily drop cap that's as easy to use as copy+paste.
  • To place this cap in your blog post, copy this code at the beginning of your text (You’ll need to be in the html editing window.):
  • http://jhische.com/dailydropcap/B-teal-cap.png" title="Daily Drop Cap by Jessica Hische" align="left" alt="B"/>
  • Don’t forget to delete the letter in the text you are replacing with the initial cap!

>> don't be afraid to take a blogging break.
but make a time to come back to your blog

blogging takes time. a lot of time. and some times, you need a life break. don't be afraid to take a break from blogging to focus on other things. I spotted evite's blog hiatus (photo above) and wanted to share it with you. They told their readers that they are working on some new projects and will be back in a few months. I like how they gave a time line and also that they left links to some of their previous posts. Once you get up and running and need to take a break, then go for it. But don't leave your community hanging - they will come back to see you and if you are not there after many months then I wouldn't count on them coming back. 

Blog Out Loud's hiatus tip - consider scheduling 1 photo post a week on Fridays to encourage your readers to enjoy the weekend. Or something like that. Photo posts are simple and you are at least staying a bit connected while your focus is somewhere else. Most blogging platforms allow you to schedule the date and time so take some time to do that. It's worth it!

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The 4th Blog Out Loud event photo gallery

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Blog Out Loud + DWR:: recap

I'd pretty much say, that last night was a smashing success. The venue was gorgeous and made one hard pressed to peel away from everything for sale in the Tools For Living Store {I heard more than one person describe it as being akin to the world's best modern museum gift store - don't miss it if you're in the 'hood} A bit of mingling, wine and hors d'ouerves kicked the night off before settling in for the topic at hand::blogging.

Our panelists were such a rich group of creative bloggers with big experience under their belts conversing on everything from social networking to what inspires them and gets them past blogger's block. Our audience was about 50% bloggers and as usual, the interaction was equally as valuable with their input and questions.

Thank you to DWR and Tara Frey who generously donated the drawing prizes. Frey Wine {organic wine with no sulfates} Pop Chips for sponsoring; as well as the beautiful work of ink + wit, amenity home, tiny pine press, Gelato baby for adding to our most awesome swag bags .

all photos courtesy Emily Ho - thanks Emily!