First Preston Bloggers Meetup a success

Andy Dickinson gave his experiences of blogging at the event

Andy Dickinson gave his experiences of blogging at the event

The first Preston Bloggers Meetup took place at the New Continental on Wednesday 13th May.

Up against stiff competition from The Apprentice it was good to see about 25-30 people crammed in the Snug area to get some blogging advice.

Andy Dickinson, pro-blogger and lecturer in digital journalism at the University of Central Lancashire, gave a talk about how to go about setting up and running a successful blog. He drew on his background as a blogger, starting out in 2003, and how he built up a community and brand around himself and what he was writing about.

The evening then moved on to networking and socialising as novice bloggers sought tips from those more experienced in blogging ways and a small queue made its way to seek advice from @digidickinson.

The night has even sparked a few blog posts (and I suspect there will be a few Tumblr, WordPress and Blogger accounts being setup this evening!):

Gemma Cameron was blogging from her iPhone before the night had even finished, capturing the words of widsom that Andy Dickinson was passing on. Rick Seymour also captured what Andy offered as advice while Chris Skoyles focused more on what the event was about and the atmosphere at it.

There were even a few tweets during the event, although it was marred by some twitter down-time, but you can find #prestonbloggers related tweets.

You can also view images of the event via Flickr. If you’ve got any images, upload them to Flickr and tag them with ‘prestonbloggersmeetup’.

Now the big question, how often would people like these events to happen? And did you like the format? Are you inspired to improve your blog? Are you inspired to start one?

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BBC London mentions Preston Blog

There’s an article on the BBC London site called ‘Me and My Blog‘ about blogging and particularly hyper-local blogging and it mentions Preston Blog.

It’s always nice to be noticed. If you don’t know what hyper-local blogging is (and a few years ago I wouldn’t have known), the article states:

Hyper-local bloggers – who blog about one street, borough or town – have served to replace aspects of the dying local paper, nourishing community life and reporting on anything from council meetings to new restaurant openings.

Thanks for the mention Clarissa, and let’s keep it going.

The first Preston Bloggers Meetup – May 13th

The official Preston Bloggers Meetup logo

The official Preston Bloggers Meetup logo

After posting the other week about organising a bloggers meetup, we got a good response so we’re going ahead. Here’s the details:

The Preston Bloggers Meetup will be bringing together all the blogging talent in Preston, along with those interested in starting a blog, to find out more about blogging. You do not need to have your own blog to come along.

There will be a guest presentation from pro-blogger, Andy Dickinson, on how to start up and run a successful blog and the opportunity to ask his advice. Find out how it’s easy to setup and get going and add your voice to the blogsphere.

Preston has an ever-growing blog scene and this is the chance for those who blog to come together and meet other bloggers and also pass on tips to those who want to blog.

A few of the more experienced bloggers in the Preston community will be on hand to answer any queries people might have on how they can improve their blog, technical problems or just any issues they might be having. A kind of ‘bloggers surgery’ if you will.

The event will be held in the Snug at the New Continental in Broadgate on Wednesday 13th May 2009. We can only take 40 people, so make sure you register to reserve your place. It’s a 7.30 PM start, we don’t know what time we’ll finish.

If you can’t make it along, you can follow on twitter using the #prestonbloggers tag.

The event is being organised by Preston Blog and Preston Writing Network.

We hope you’ll join us to chill out with a beverage, possibly a laptop and learn/talk about social media.

The logo above is by the lovely Kerry Sholicar, she’s an ace graphic designer we know. She also did the Preston Tweetup logo. And we liked that, a lot.

The first three months of Preston Blog

Preston Blog has now been running for just over three months. I thought I’d take a moment to take stock and reflect on my personal blog about how I set up a community journalism blog for where I live.

I also thought our readers might be interested to see a ‘Preston Blog in numbers’ and get behind the content and see some of the figures.

To date Preston Blog has had 9,477 visitors. The busiest day was Sunday 15th March 2009 when over 300 people came and viewed the blog. We’ve had 74 posts, in 24 categories and we’ve tagged our posts with 437 tags.

Top five search terms for people finding the blog through Google etc are: preston blog, moonlight walk 2009, dr preston blog, preston twitter, prestonblog. According to my Google search we are now #2 if you search for ‘preston blog’. We’re only being beaten by Robert Peston’s BBC blog. Pesky doom merchant.

Our most viewed content has been about the charity Moonlight Walk, an abandoned local mental asylum, a local group for geeks, a tweetup about Preston Guild 2012 and legislation that could force music venues to fit noise limiters.

That’s just a flavour. There’s loads of great stuff to read on here, plenty of ways to get involved and we’ve got plenty more to come in the future.

Thanks for reading the blog, thanks for your support.