blogging

The contest is over

waxwing - Rebecca NasonNo one managed to stay on the contest over the presentation of first 8 birding bloggers and make correct guesses for all of them.  However,  honorary mentions must be done to Jeremy Gatten, Mark Cranford and Dalcio Docol for keep trying  during  the racing pace of presenting the participants in Birdingblogs.com – which is launched tomorrow Oct 20, 2010.  (You may have a look now, but you shall not find much…so best to come back tomorrow).

I now have the honor of presenting the last 2 bloggers from the UK. They are the amazing photographer and birder  Rebecca Nason of Shetland Exposure (who also provide the photo in the title) and Martin Garner of Birding Frontiers and also the recent book the Frontiers of Birding (apparantly out of print)

Northern Harrier. Martin Garner

Northern Harrier. Martin Garner

I am very pleased to two of Britains most acclaimed birders on our team. This will be good.  Look out for the launch tomorrow.

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Day 9. Blogging. Social Media for birders.

Reasons for blogging

There are different reasons for blogging. Blog is short for web-log – originally meaning a web-diary – with the big difference – while a diary is secret the blog is open for anyone to read. The inner soul of millions of people are exposed around the world through blogs.

In a way it is strange that not more birders blog. Think about it. Birders share information and photos. Birders are very thirsty for birding information. Looking at the success of Birdfourm, Surfbirds and Fatbirder it is clear that birders already use the internet A LOT – and to some extent are already using some social media. In spite of this, neither Facebook and to even a lesser extent blogging and Twitter, have won the masses over. There are still many birders who do not use social media as much as they could.

Why should birders blog?

In the past posts I have mainly dealt with Facebook, except for the last post where I talked about the blogging platform Posterous.  Certainly, Facebook is in some ways Blogging, Flickr and Twitter in one single interphase. But there are limits and the most important one, is that you have to have a Facebook account to interchange information and see the posts of someone on Facebook. I’m sure you know a lot of birders who still have not connected with Facebook .

  • With a blog there is no limit to how many people you can reach.
  • Post your bird pics and discuss them.
  • Easy to share on forums and birding lists.
  • You can use Facebook to promote you blog.
  • Some birders use the blog only for birding trips. It is like a trip diary but kept on line. See Sheridan Coffey’s and Diana Fruguglietti’s blogs to get an idea.
  • If you have a birding business you SHOULD have a blog to create content on your URL.
  • Check the keywords in the illustration above.  All are reasons why some of us blog. Which are applicable to you?

Platforms.

  • Posterous. My favorite. The easiest way to blog. Just send an email with some photo’s attached and your blog post is ready. You can also connect all your socialmedia platforms, so that when you post to your posterous blog you also post to Twitter, Facebook, You Tube and Flickr. I dealt with Posterous in the previous post in this blog series.
  • Blogger – blogspot.  This is Google’s platform. Very easy to use -and directly connected to Picasa to upload photos and Google Friend Connect to get your friends involved – although Google Friend Connect also can be set on Word Press blogs now. Most birdbloggers seem to use Blogger, maybe because its name – sort of a default first stop for anyone who wants to blog.
  • Word Press. This is the platform to chose if your blog will be part of an already existent web-page – and especially if you are to use the blog for “promoting” your business. Word Press has tons of applications that help Search Engine optimization, comment management, spam control, etc. There are also a lot of free themes to chose from and some excellent themes for pay that can be customized.
    It is easy to import a pre-existing Blogger blog into your WP blog if you want to.

Some great blogs to seek inspiration from

These are some of the blogs that I have been checking out lately.

  • Dawns Bloggy Blog Dawn and her husband Jeff travel around North America in their mobile home looking for birds, mushrooms and nature in general – and meet up with other bloggers. Fasten your seatbelts and follow Dawn.
  • John Riutta Multifaceted birder – and a great writer. I love the flow in his writing.
  • A DC Birding Blog. John Beetham does not only write on birds. This past week there are stories with bugs and cleaning of Kemp’s Ridley Turtles after the Deepwater Horizon catastrophe. I particularly like his weekly series called “Loose Feathers” with links to interesting articles and blogs from the past week.  John always digs up great stuff that are must-reads!
  • 10000 birds hardly needs presentation.  Mike, Corey and Charlie is the strong blogging team that deliver daily posts. 10000 birds is one of the oldest and the most consistent of bird blogs -and the brain child of Mike Bergin.  I don’t know a birdblogger who does not check out 10000 birds daily.
  • Reservoir Catz. Naughty Naughty! And certainly not for the prude. But extremely funny. Short reports from the British twitching scene with lots of irony. It is written like press releases and the serious tone together with frequent four letter words make it hilarious reading.
  • Bird Canada Pat Bumstead’s blog is a good example of good crafted blog with a regular deliveries. I like her Bird News. Similar to John Beetham’s Loose Feathers.
  • Aimophila Adventure’s Rick Wright is not only a great birder of  Wings fame, but also a great writer. His recent deliveries from Tuscuny and Provence are a delight. I am anxious to see what his writing will be like when he visits Peru with us in September.
  • Bird, Words and Websites. Laura Kammermeier has a good eye for good stories and a way with words.

These are just a few of the blogs I read regularly. There are lots more of course.

NatureBlogNetwork

NBN is another nature blogger’s institution created by  Mike Bergin. Nature blogs are rated on the unique number of daily visitors and sorted into different categories. Naturally, it is a place where you can discover other blogs.  Those blogs that publish daily or several times per day rates much higher than those that only post a couple of times per week, so don’t be too fooled by the rating. There are lots of brilliant blogs that don’t make top 40 that simply do not publish that often.

Nevertheless, follow the instructions to sign up your blog to the network. There is a weekly presentation in the NBN blog of new blogs. This way your new blog get a presentation and hopefully some readers will check you out.

Homework:

  • If you have not started a blog – start one.  Chose one of the platforms above. You can always transfer to your own URL later.
  • If you have a blog make sure you are member of NBN.
  • Which are your recommended blogs that you read often? Let us know in the comment section.
  • Present your own blog and some words about it in the comment section.

Previous posts about blogging.

Previous posts in the Social Media for Birders series.

If you still have not signed up for the workshop, which will give you an email notice when there is a new post, please do so below. It is not too late. There are still 23 posts to go! Set up a folder in your mail program to which you import each delivery to have it handy for future reference.

Photo Blogging Keywords by MexicanWave/Steve Bridger

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Blogging for Dummies. It does not get easier than this

Posterous LogoIn the previous post in the Social Media for birders Workshop about Google Buzz it was mentioned that Buzz almost is a Blogging platform, although there are a few things missing. Today, I shall deal with a quite new, but little known (at least among birders), dead-easy platform  for blogging.

Imagine if, rather than writing the text and the uploading pictures one by one, you could just write an email insert the pics where you want them, including the embedded videos just with a link and then push send. Few seconds later you would have a perfectly displayed blogpost in an instant. Would that not be incredible? But nah, blogging should be a pain. It could never be so easy. One need to size the pics, move them to the right place and so on, right?

Not with the out of the blue platform Posterous. It can not be simpler than this, just write an email and send it to Posterous. It is not totally new, as it has been around since 2009, but there are very few bird bloggers that use it. In fact I don’t think I have seen any birdblogger use it yet.

Characteristics

I think the platform is very inviting to people who  have never blogged before.

  • Easy.  No need to sign up. Just send an email with your first post to posterous@posterous.com
  • Easy to embed pictures and video. For example, just place the link where you want the YouTube video to appear.
  • Configure your account to include Facebook, Twitter, You Tube, Flickr, etc and then include twitter-facebook@posterous.com in the email. Like magic your post goes both to your blog and the social service you wanted.
  • Book-marklet blogging. Add the Posterous Book Marklet to your web-browser toolbar. No need to download anything. Just drag and drop the plugin to your toolbar.  Say you find a good page on the web that you would like to blog about.  Highlight text, photo, or video and click the book-marklet and like magic you have half the post done. Add some description and some text and you have created a blog post in a couple of minutes.
  • You can get your own domain.
  • tags can be added to the post by following a specific format.

For already experienced bloggers it maybe a venue to post stuff that doesn’t fit on you regular blog. You can use the blog platform to draw traffic to you regular blog or you can even send posts via posterous to your main blog, although I have not been able to do that  with my own blog.

(To explain it gets so technical even I don’t understand. My blog is a Word Press blog on the company domain which principly is in asp. The Word Press platform use php. The server I use simulates php although it is principally a Windows server. This may be the reason why I can’t make it work…I am in need of help, so if you know please let me know).

If you want to learn more about Posterous check these to introductory blog posts by Guy Kawasaki and Martin Bryant. Also check Posterous frequent answered questions page.

My first Posterous blog can be found here.  I have not done much with it, except for trying out a few things.  But just sending a photo to Facebook and share it on Twitter with a short text gave over 200 views. It  also resulted good to make a fast 2 minute summery pointing to my ordinary blogpost -this one.

Why don’t you blog?

A gave the question to my friends on Facebook and Twitter.

Meanwhile, how about you? Do you blog? If not, will Posterous change that?

Is Posterous for you?

If you don’t have a blog and are looking for something easy. Definitely. The most common reason I hear about not blogging is that it is too time consuming.

If you have a blog already and maybe have content that does not fit it, or want a blog that can be used more for commenting on other blogs keeping your main blog for your more thorough personal writing, then Posterous fits the bill. In the later case the Bookmarklet comes in very handy.

Homework:

Start a Posterous blog. Just send some text and some photo to post@posterous.com. Let us know your results in the comment section below.

Previous posts in the Social Media for Birders series.

If you still have not signed up for the workshop, which will give you an email notice when there is a new post, please do so below. It is not too late. There are still 23 posts to go! Set up a folder in your mail program to which you import each delivery to have it handy for future reference.

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Twitter club for birders.

Twitter club for birders.

Tweet Club 7

We are back and this time the wait was not that long. only 11 days, which is not too bad. I will present a very consise Tweet Club this time….and then hopefully fill it with some more details during the week. This way it shall not be delayed and posted in time.

Results of last issue

  • @soaringfalcon1 http://bit.ly/ZyekK 180 clicks
  • @journowl http://bit.ly/3DrmtX. 159 clicks
  • @PatBumstead http://bit.ly/1Gow7y 132 clicks
  • @LadyWoodpecker http://bit.ly/12elpN. 126 clicks
  • @HooootOwl http://bit.ly/12Ofo5. 118 clicks
  • @irenapuella http://bit.ly/IMMXH 98 clicks
  • @Kolibrix http://bit.ly/vyq4H 88 clicks

Larry Jordan did it again. Once again number one! Want more clicks to your post? Study Larry Jordan. He is one of the most diligent blog readers and blog commenter I know …. and a frequent re-tweeter.

Participants this week.

That is it! Please submit for next week in the comment section,.

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The tweetclub is better than blog carnivals.

Tweet club logo.The birdwatchers tweetclub is much better to get visits to your blog post than the traditional blog carnivals. Have a look at this weeks tweet club results. WOW!!! It is the most overwhelming result since its start. Many blogposts have gotten over 200 clicks! Check this!!

In most these results were added to posts already having been posted a while and already been published on Twitter and to your blog readers.

Some participants don’t stick to the rules.

You must understand that this is a collective effort. You need to retweet all the other posts if you want the benefit to be in receiving end of traffic. There is no need to single out anyone. I was quite lenient in accepting people this week to participate, as I was keen to get the tweet club started again. The tweet club is new, so it may not be all that clear to everyone how it works.

I ask you to check the earlier posts from the tweet club to grasp the ideas behind it. In any case here is a short summery of 3 main rules.

  1. You must have a Twitter acount with people interested in birds as followers. I have not set a minimum number of followers, but lets say for the sake of argument that at least 10 of those people following you are interested in birds.
  2. During the week you commit to do minimum 10 retweets of  individual posts. Best of course if you tweet each posts twice. But you commit only to 10 tweets in total.  I personally tweet each post 3 times.
  3. Use the bit.ly link that I provide. This is needed to be able to measure the number of clicks each post receives.

Share on Facebook

Birdbloggers should share more on Facebook. In spite of mentioning the effectiveness of Facebook sharing and a requirement for anyone who had not yet large Twitter numbers, noone even shared one post. Believe me it is amazing the results you can get this way. Let’s do a test. I will post once a day from tomorrow the four best results from the past tweet club (Larry, Kim, Susan and Janet). When you see the post on my wall, share it on your wall. By the publication of the next tweet club, if  Larrry, Kim, Susan and Janet could check how many extra clicks they get (install google analytics or just the wordpress stats for those on WordPress).

This weeks participants.

  • RT@LadyWoodpecker Birding on Westham Island (Spot the Decoy) http://bit.ly/12elpN. (Had 122 hits prior to tweetclub launch)
  • RT @HooootOwl Check out the Broken wing act by this Killdeer. http://bit.ly/12Ofo5. (Had 25 hits prior to tweetclub launch)
  • RT @irenapuella If you are stuck in Sumba and already seen the bird endemics, waddayado? Go to the races.!! http://bit.ly/IMMXH
  • RT @journowl Brandt’s  Cormorant – A rock of guttural croaks.  A photo session. http://bit.ly/3DrmtX. (Had 58 hits prior to tweetclub launch)
  • RT@soaringfalcon1 Meet the Birds of the Sacramento National Wildlife Refuge http://bit.ly/ZyekK
  • RT @PatBumstead Pellet Puzzle: What’s On Owl’s Menu? http://bit.ly/1Gow7y
  • RT @Kolibrix Updated Interview w the most popular bird blogger  @grrlscientists (Devorah Bennu). Join her in Manu Dec 6. http://bit.ly/vyq4H

That is folks. Please leave your next contribution for Tweet Club in the comment section below. Now when my newsletter is out, it hope we shall be back next week as usual. Deadline on Tuesday Oct 20. Share on Twitter and on Facebook.  Let’s see if anyone can get 300 clicks this week.

Twitter image by creative Commons lisence on Flickr.  Photo credit: Adam Gutierrez
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NewsLetter – Kolibri Expeditions

Yes, we all hate spam. And most unsolicited mail would qualify as spam. However, once in blue moon I do get some unsolicited stuff, that catches my attention and that I don’t dislike. Those occasions always have to do with targeted messages. If as a birder I get an unsolicited message about birds, that should not ruin my day. And especially if there is a lot of value in the message such as a trip report or some great photos there is good chance I don’t send it straight to the trash bin. I have tried to use such strategy in my business, admittedly with mixed success, as I on rare occasions get very strong negative reaction. Some would argue that anything unsolicited is spam. However, with the commercial bombardment of ads for totally un-relevant stuff and spam such as Nigeria scams, Viagra sales and explicit porn, a very rare newsletter about birds would be quite harmless for most of us as long as there is no problem unsubscribing.
I have until now included some ads for my tours in these newsletters, but from this day on I am changing strategy. Why? Because, I would like to inform those interested in new tours and offers on a more regular basis, which would be too frequent for an unsolicited newsletter. So I am splitting my previous efforts into two different strategies – a massive non-commercial informative targeted twice yearly newsletter and a more direct opt-in bi-weekly newsletter which also features some tours.
I chose not to push any tours in the first newsletter, to strengthen the message that I am sharing my knowledge with you, without expecting anything in return. This past 9 months as a blogger has taught me that in order to be successful with a business using social media, one has to share much more than one tries to push sales. When someone wants to buy, they will hopefully look me up. This non-commercial approach should be great for branding.
Although I would be nice to take some credits for these thoughts myself, I humbly credit 100% to my house-hold social media heroes for the inspiration. They are probably familiar to you and if not check out the links to their blogs. Darren Rowse of Problogger, John Haydon and Chris Brogan.
It would be interesting to read your comments. Will I get away with my massive unsolicited but targeted newsletter? And will I get anyone signing up for the opt-in newsletter, I wonder? Comment below.
Below, follows the sales-free Newsletter that is currently being distributed to a lot of birders. The content should be interesting if you are a birder and if not serve as an example of my points in this introduction to unsolicited newsletters.

Newsletter Nº 008
Date: October 9 – 2009
Dear birdwatcher,

This birding news bulletin from Peru is the 8th since its start in 2004. If you receive this newsletter we probably have birds and birdwatching in common, but you are right, it is unsolicited. You did not ask for it. On the other hand, this is an informative newslettter about birds and their conservation and links to articles which you hopefully find useful if you are a birder. There is no sales pitch in this newsletter and the links presented here are not directed to pages where you are asked to buy something from us.

This newsletter is different compared to previous newsletters. It contains some posts from my blog A birding blog from Peru by Gunnar Engblom, that I think many of you will find useful. The blogposts can be commented, so you can give feedback directly. I answer all questions best I can.

This newsletter covers bird conservation projects, social media for birders, some selected blogposts from the last year – both on broad topics as well as more specific birding in Peru and finally a few updates on the Kolibri staff who are re-producing and producing future birdguides.

Here is the table of content:

1. Facebook for birders
2. Blogging for birders
3. Twitter for birders
4. 11 best birds in Peru as tourism attractions
5. 1000 birds to see before you die.
6. How to become a birdwatcher in the 21st century.
7. 10 best ways to avoid chiggers.
8. A marathon for Satipo road
9. Amarakaeri Communal Reserve next to Manu.
10. Life List – a new book on Phoebe Snetsinger by Olivia Gentile
11. Kolibri staff news: We are producing new birders!

1. Facebook for birders.

With 300 million users, Facebook should not need a specific presentation to you. However, I have seen that many of my birding friends still have not jumped on the band wagon or have not realized the potential it has for birders to connect with each other as a community. It is the perfect place to search for advice when planning for a birding trip. And you don’t have to be real friends to be friends on Facebook. Having birdwatching in common is at least for me enough to connect with you through Facebook. Read the full article: Facebook for birders. A Beginner’s Guide.

For those already on Facebook and would like to become Facebook friends with me here is my Facebook profile. http://www.facebook.com/Gunnar.Engblom/

Also note that I have started three Facebook groups open for anyone to join.

These groups are NOT commercial vehicles for Kolibri Expeditions, but rather open for all that share the same interest.

Finally, there is a Kolibri Expeditions Fan page. In a previous newsletter I introduced Kolibri Ambassadors – a community for our past and future clients. However, with the growth of Facebook, this initiative has become obsolete. I regret that I did not know about Facebook back then. This “Fan Page” shall be a great place to discuss Kolibri Expedition trips with others. I am planning to post a lot of photos and videos here for your enjoyment.

2. Blogging for birders

To maintain an on-line web-log (blog) has become extremely popular in recent years. Digital photography and free resources such as Blogger (by Google) and My Space has made it easy for birders to also publish their own tales and photos of birds on their own site at no cost. In contrast to Facebook you may share with everyone on a blog, not only with your near friends. I too have had a few blogs that I have nourished all to rarely, until I recently understood that a regular blogging section on our company page could actually bring traffic to the main web-page, as well as improve ranking on search the engines. I down-loaded the WordPress blogging platform to my web-page. This platform is also free and popular among businesses because it can be uploaded on your own domain and it has various plugins that makes it easier for search engines to find your posts. You find more info about blogging and how to connect with other bird bloggers and get traffic to your blog in my Blogging for birders blogpost.

3. Twitter for birders.

I am sure I am loosing some people now. Twitter seems to most birders like a complete waste of time. I could not have agreed more, when I first looked at this Social Media fad. I have changed my mind since. If you want to learn more how Twitter can be useful for birders check out Twitter for birders. The biggest value of Twitter for us, apart from the obvious link-sharing, is that we can recruit more new birders from the huge Twitter pool and pass on birding news very fast.
If you would like to connect with me on Twitter, here is my twitter handle @kolibrix. Click on the link and you shall see my latest tweets.I have covered Twitter quite a bit on my blog. You might find the following blogposts interesting.

4. Birds as tourism attractions

This is an interesting exercise. Say you were to name the birds in your country or your state that are or could be tourism attractions for non-birders. These are the kind of birds that everyone likes with a lot of Wow-factor. The kind of attraction one would make a detour to see. They could be arena birds displaying in leks, big colonies, penguins, hummingbirds, places of concentrated migration or just very special birds.

Here is my list of the top 11 bird tourism attractions for Peru. Make a list of your best tourism attractions for your area and upload it in a blog and I’ l write a follow-up post linking to you.

5. 1000 birds to see before you die.

Do you feel that there is no way you can keep up with the world birding. There are just too many birds to see. Instead of trying to see them all, why not just concentrate on the top 1000 birds. The most magnificent and special birds that you would like to see during your lifetime. Not only does this make your targets more manageable, but it all also invites you to be less fanatic during your holidays with your non-birding spouse and just concentrate on those special birds that maybe he/she would also enjoy. This idea will summit with a book, and you can help decide which species to include. Click this link: 1000 birds to see before you die.

6. How to become a birdwatcher in the 21st century.

I predict that birding and nature watching will grow very fast in the coming years. Why? Because, the birders are very good at promoting and recruiting, by putting a pair binoculars and field guide in the hands of a teenager? Hardly! That is so 20th century!

I have two blogposts that develop the new way to recruit new birders.

7. How to avoid chiggers in the Tropics.

Chiggers can be a nuisance and difficult to protect oneself from. Often one takes measures after the damage is already done. Here is a fool proof 10 step approaches to avoid chiggers on your visit to the Peruvian rain-forest.

8. A Marathon for Satipo road.

I have the ambition but not always the time to train to become a half decent Marathon runner for my age. My dream is to be able to qualify for the oldest marathon in the world – the classic Boston Marathon. The problem is that there was no Marathon in Peru that was internationally recognized, so I had my mind to train for a Marathon in the US late in the year. But in April I still had not even gotten started to train and I hear that all of a sudden there would be a Marathon in Lima May 31 and the first one to be a qualifying race for Boston and only 5 and half weeks away. I should give it a try although time was short. I needed yet another stimulus and challenge and making my race a fund-raiser for the conservation of Satipo road and for eco-tourism infrastructure was a perfect match. Below follows a series of blogposts on the marathon and the Satipo road project. We are happy to been able to work on this together with Rainforest Partnership.

9. Amarakaeri Communal reserve next to Manu.

Last year I got the privilege to visit four new lodges on the Manu circuit owned by Wanamei – a tour company formed by the 8 communities of three native ethnic groups Yine, Matsiguenka and Harakmbut. I immediately saw a potential for a niche marketing these lodges for birders and we set up some programs. Here is the first report about the potential for birders of this area. The birding is quite spectacular and many of the special birds of the Manu region are easier to see here than at many of the better known lodges in the area.

However, this year two of the lodges never got restored to functionality after the rains. It is quite a shame, so I thought Kolibri Expeditions best make something about it. We are very excited to be committed to make sure that the lodges are re-opened again. Read about the strategy in this update to the community lodges next to Manu.

The first support and promotion trip is scheduled on Oct 29, 2009 and hosted by the well known blogger GrrlScientist (Devorah Bennu). The trip she hosts would be particularly interesting for anyone that loves parrots. Devorah Bennu is a parrot expert. Read my interview with GrrlScientist here.

Also check this blog post by Seabrooke Leckie who host the blogger promotion trip in Nov 2010.

10. Book review: Life List by Olivia Gentile.

One of the nice things about writing a somewhat popular blog is that sometimes one gets a free book. The new biography Life List: A Woman’s Quest for the World’s Most Amazing Birds I probably would have bought anyway. It is a wonderfully told story of the world’s greatest birder Pheobe Snetsinger. Read my review of Life List here.

11. Meet the crew. We are producing more birders.

It is time to present to you our staff for the season 2009-2010. Here is Kolibri Expeditions staff and the latest additions to the pool of new Peruvian birders. We are very pleased being sponsored with great optics from Vortex Optics during 2009. Reviews of our equipment will follow in future blogs.

————————————————–

That is it folks. There is no commercial interest in this newsletter, but I admit that the link to Life List on Amazon.com would give me coffee money if anyone would buy it after clicking the link. Do sign up for the twice-monthly opt-in newsletter below if you got interested in our tours or just want to stay uptodate with my blog posts without having to check the actual blog to see what is new.
Good birding to you all
Gunnar

New twice-monthly email birding news mailing list
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Social Media for birders, blog summeries, conservation news, new trips, special offers.

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Your favorite Tweet Club is back.

Twitter club for birders. We need a better logo! Could anyone please come up with something?

Twitter club for birders. We need a better logo! Could anyone please come up with something?

Not as long delay this time, but still delayed. I hope to be able to get the tweetclub #006 out by next Thursday Oct 1, so please submit your contributions in the comment section below before Tuesday Sep 29 . See earlier tweet-club postings to understand the rules and how this works.

I am having somewhat difficult time to get enough participants in the tweet-club in spite of the overwhelming results. Some of you may think it comes off as a bit spammy, but in reality for those of us on Twitter who follow more than 100 people have a hard time to actually see all things that are relevant. Therefore, highlighting blogposts about birds that have been selected by the individual birdblogger and additionally have past my “filter” (strictly commercial posts or non-bird related posts will not pass) guarantees excellent reading and posts you don’t want to miss. You also have a chance to spread your blog to people who don’t regularly would read your blog. I have around 4600 followers on Twitter.  Quite obviously not all are birders, but if we could provide interesting blogposts about birds that have lots of wow-factor in them (I repeat great photos, something very funny, a great story, something useful, a top 1o list, a tutorial etc have the chance to reach far more people that you usually reach) then we can also engage more people to maybe become birders and ultimately active guardians of nature.

Facebook-club for Bird Bloggers.

I have talked about this idea in previous posts. Now it is time to introduce it here as a fixed strategy. Some explaining: From the past tweet-club results I have picked those that got over 100 clicks and presented these on my Facebook (some 1800 Facebook Friends – mostly birders). Unfortunately, it I can’t measure my out-going links from Facebook (if it is possible – let me know!), but it ought to be significant. If you have a great story or photo it may even be re-Facebooked by some of friends. For a specialized hobby like ours and with the relatively few birders on Twitter, Facebook reaches more birders. Twitter can reach more people and especially people that may have a beginning interest in nature watching. Facebook reaches the already converted souls and the friends of friends. The two compliment each other. It is therefore logical to take the Tweet-club also to Facebook.

A few things to think about.
1. By publishing links to other bloggers, you will appear less navel-gazing and self promoting. Sure, Facebook in itself is a self-promoting media, but your Facebook friends will love you even more if you not only promote yourself.
2. But, don’t overdo it. Only share things you truly like.
3. Share the link only once or at the most twice if you posted at an odd hour and get very few responses.  Since Facebook is an mutual opt-in social media system it means that most those who are following you as Facebook Friends are truly interested in you and contrary to Twitter will read almost every update.

Newbies on the Tweetclub

We have some new participants for this weeks tweet-club. I have chosen posts from their blogs since they either did not supply a specific blogpost, it was not about birds or it contained a stream that can’t be seen in some countries. Sorry to these bloggers for that inconvenience.

Here are the tweets you should retweet (and of course read and comment).

  • RT @Journowl The cheaper sex ……for Imperial Eagle http://bit.ly/62uWo
  • RT @JKissnHug Very confident Sandhill Cranes were raising young in popular Michigan park  http://bit.ly/Zzceg
  • RT @SoaringFalcon1 The burrowing owl is threatened in California. Larry Jordan gives all the background.  http://bit.ly/4zbY24 (had 104 hits prior to tweetclub launch)
  • RT @irenapuella Great shots of Asian Owls http://bit.ly/3sJcbt (had 16 tweets for this link before launch.
  • RT @ falconmountain Pallid Harrier in Finland. Good flight photos. http://bit.ly/3AP6Fk
  • RT @NC_N8 Everyone has heard about the Christmas Bird Count! What a bout the Fall Bird Count? http://bit.ly/27oxtv
  • RT @2birderstogo Nothing like a jay to lift your spirits and cure your ills. http://bit.ly/fpqjj
  • RT @kolibrix Do you want to birdwatch in Manu, Peru and support the indigenous communities get into eco-tourism? http://bit.ly/OdIiZ
  • RT @LadyWoodpecker Last day of summer. What to do? Go birding on the shore of course http://bit.ly/myPv1

I also had contributions from BirdExplorers and Dani in Catalunya, but since I got no twitter account from neither, I can not include them. Please submit again next week.

Last tweet club results.

The results from tweet club 4 were a bit more modest than usual, but both long delivery time of the blogpost as well as rather few participants gave lower numbers.

@SoaringFalcon1 http://bit.ly/2Dr2W 36 clicks
@kolibrix http://bit.ly/25Qeo 59 clicks
@DawnFine http://bit.ly/M4C0K 64 clicks
@birdfreak http://bit.ly/FGKrE 66 clicks
@journowl htp://bit.ly/9ryLS 73 clicks
@gwendolen http://bit.ly/34XjO 85 clicks

Gwendolen’s Vulture call got most clicks.

Leave contributions for next weeks tweet-club. Contributions by Tuesday, por favor.

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Whither StumbleUpon

Stumble UponTwo weeks ago Mike Bergin of NatureBlogNetwork (also of 10000birds) put out a question to the naturebloggers whether Stumble Upon and other Social Media bookmarking services actually bring any traffic to their sites. Check the post and the discussion here! The consensus was that while Stumble Upon can have immense effect on giving traffic, most naturebloggers don’t use it or the results are not giving permanent readers, only sudden peaks. Naturally, it is hard to measure who will become a new regular reader of the blog and from where he/she is recruited. Therefore, I think there is a value also in such a sudden peak of readers that have reached your blog from the less regular outlets,  than those you have among your friends and followers on Facebook and Twitter and your regular RSS feed reader. You may convert one or two to a regular reader. Furthermore, Stumble upon has a Birding index, why birding articles can be labeled (tagged) correctly (contrary to for example Digg!).

Yet another Social Media experiement for birdbloggers.

The tweetclub for birdbloggers I started two weeks ago has had some interesting effects on visits to the participating blogs. I want to do a new experiment. I have dusted off an old post about NatureBlogging previously submitted to SU, that probably most of you have read already.  I am reposting it again on Twitter and my Facebook and ask my followers/friends to hit “thumbs up”, if they like.  Instead of giving the direct link to my post, I give the Stumble Upon link in bit.ly fashion. This is the link you shall click to get to the submitted test post: http://bit.ly/ApiST.   This way it is really easy to show your SU feeling about the particular post. It seems OK to do it this way on Twitter, but it looks very ugly on Facebook. But remember that this is a test. Please try it and if you are already a member of Facebook, consider writing a short review.

The StumbleUpon club for birdbloggers.

If this works the way I think it may work, the idea would be to have around 30 birdbloggers submitting one of their best all time (timeless) birding posts and submit it to the Birdbloggers Stumble Upon club. I imagine a blog with a great jawdropping picture prominent in the blog will get more stumbles. One selected post will be stumbled once per day by all members. There should be one post stumbled per day for a month  We shall also try to twitter and facebook those posts that are in our liking.  That is the outline to the idea. Let’s see how the experiment goes first.

If you liked this post, check out these related posts regarding the Birdbloggers TweetClub.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/topgold/ / CC BY 2.0
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Round 2 of the Tweetclub is here.

Twitter club for birders. We need a logo! Anyone can come up with something?
Twitter club for birders. We need a logo! Anyone can come up with something?

The first birdbloggers Tweet Club was received well. In spite that, we got few people joining the second round, but many have promised to be back week 3. Surprise! Here is something that will bring more commitment and traffic to your blogs. I did tell you this last week, remember

Facebook Blog-sharing club.

If I share the most popular post (those that have gotten more than 100 clicks with the provided bit.ly link) on my Facebook wall, I hope that those of you belonging to the tweetclub and also are my facebook friends will click on the share button and also display the same link on your wall. We should not do all the Twitter club posts this way, but only those that have become most popular through Twitter. This could be a good reward for those participating in the Tweetclub, and carrot for all to try to submit posts that will become popular. (I repeat: the mixture of a smart title in the tweet and great pictures will lead to retweets – or something that is extremely useful to many people). If you are not Facebook friend with me already, please consider becoming one. Here is my Facebook link  http://www.facebook.com/gunnar.engblom I welcome all birders, naturebloggers, marathon runners, post-punkrockers and Eminem-fans to become Facebook friends with me. …..errr…OK, Mom – who just got internet connection, family and other “real-life” friends are also welcome of course.

And the winners are….

Numbers of tweets to the supplied bit.ly link since publication on July 13.

@jeffgyr 147 tweets http://bit.ly/ar1OJ
@patbumstead 135 tweets http://bit.ly/I7KOF
@soaringfalcon1 132 tweets http://bit.ly/3UTZ5k
@kolibrix 132 tweets http://bit.ly/UjqOx
@journowl  115 tweets http://bit.ly/kakapo
@wrenaissance 113 tweets http://bit.ly/Qj855
@VickieHart 111 tweets http://bit.ly/RfMpr
@DawnFine 106 tweets http://bit.ly/vIaxU

That is 8 out of 14 that managed to get over 100 hits for a single post.  And those that did not reach 100 had in any case at least 80 hits. Congratulations to all participants.

These winners will be “Facebooked” this week by myself. Everyone who reads this, please click on the “share” link for each blog I present to put it on your Facebook as well. I will let you know how many additional hits this experiment produced by next week. OK?

Birdbloggers Tweet Club #002.

That was a lot beating about the bush. At last, here are this weeks participants. It is easy because there are only five participants. Nobody should have any problems in retweeting all. Remember to use tweetlater to schedule your tweets for #birdsaturday and #ecomonday.  Only my late tweeting (around 11 PM) of five selected posts for the last #ecomonday gave between 10 and 20 additional hits for each.

  • RT @journowl The extremely cute Burrowing Owl stands small in Californian urban expansion. @journowl is fighting though  http://bit.ly/xrepC
  • RT @birdingdude Cool video: tiny Piping Plovers are pugnaciously chasing off the giant Oystercatcher. http://bit.ly/16NdeF
  • RT @patbumstead The most expensive lifer. One Life Bird: Cost $11,000 http://bit.ly/tnCNe (7 clicks prior to publication)
  • RT @soaringfalcon1 Did you ever see a Wood Duck duckling make its first flight? More like a PLUNGE! http://bit.ly/4GycD0 (94clicks prior to publication)
  • RT @phillipdews Sky lark numbers in the UK not sky high anymore. Replaced by crickets? Personal retro by @phillipdews http://bit.ly/XXrzZ (36 clicks prior publication)
  • RT @kolibrix How to remember South American bird songs with Monty Python. http://bit.ly/Fdt7

My humble contribution was first published on March 8. With this I want to highlight that if you have posts that you feel are worth a second look, there is absolutely nothing wrong with dusting some old treasures. Remember to post your contributions to Tweet club 3 at the comment section of this post. Other comments and thoughts are also well received.

Everybody tweet now!

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I repeat. Will the real bird blogger please stand up.

First! Have a look at the first two notes about the Birdbloggers tweetclub, so you know what this is all about.

The first post presented the idea and how it works. Read this one first.

The second post also provided the results from my retweeting campaign of I and the bird #104 and discussed the rules for the tweetclub. Also a very important post to read.

Both posts should be your first reference to learn more about the tweet club.

Results Birdbloggers tweetcub #001.

A very interesting experience this. Of the 14 participants in this weeks tweetclub 6 had more than 100 visitors, 1 had 99 visitors and 4 had over 80. The best result had Jeff Gordon with 123 hits to his post about flipping Horseshoe Crabs over to ensure more food for the Red Knots.
Not too bad considering this was the first trial tweet club.

A few things to clarify.

  1. All participants should commit to tweet at least 10 posts once over the week.
  2. Since it spans over several days it should not be difficult for most users to tweet each blogposts on more than one occasion.
  3. I have re-tweeted each post three times at different times on different days. Did this disturb any of you? I think 3 times should be the upper limit, but let me know your thoughts on this.
  4. By using Tweetlater you can schedule the tweets at what ever time you like. It makes it easy to post all the posts on several occasions.
  5. You may chose to just retweet the stuff I or someone else send out. That is fine. The effect is the same.
  6. Please, use the bit.ly link I provide when retweeting. Otherwise it is difficult to get the right statistics.
  7. You can check how many clicks any participating  blogpost gets by adding a + sign just after the bit.ly URL.

You will not be allowed to only be a passive user of the tweetclub. I have some tolerance this first week, but don’t count on it later. If you submit a post to the tweet club, you must reciprocate and tweet other people’s stuff to. Fair enough?

Submit to Birdbloggers tweet club #002

So if you want 100 visitors to your blog post next week, please submit it in the comment section below. State your Twitter ID, the title and the link.
I need your entry by  Sunday July 19 Monday July 20 night.  The tweet-club #002 will be published on Monday Wednesday night.  This way we shall also be able to use both the hashtags #birdsaturday and #ecomonday on each day.  Furthermore it may be an idea to also include the hashtag #birding once in a while.

Again I remind you.  Try to be catchy and smart, and use great photos that catch the eye.

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