by Marta Jasinska
Today we’ve launched our MOO technology blog! We’re all very proud and excited to be putting ourselves “out there”, participating towards the wider online engineering community. However, before we can start sharing content, I think it’s important to consider one key question – why are we doing this?
After all, it has been almost 20 years since Blogger was created, 15 since the launch of WordPress. In internet years that's ancient history! We now have so many content formats – not to mention the multitude of ways to create and share content – from Tweets for your puns and political outrage, Instagrams for your baby/puppy/holiday/wedding photos to YouTube videos for your DIY tutorials and cute cat home movies. Blogging is far from dead, but it’s definitely not the only route we could’ve gone down. So, why do we even want to blog? And what about?
A simple Google search will give you plenty of reasons of course. Things like click-through rates, influencer stats across social media, employer branding and recruitment numbers; they all matter to us and they all can be impacted in positive ways by a robust, technology focused blog packed with relevant, interesting and crawlable information. Content is what gets people to engage with organizations and a team managed blog is a great source of relevant content for your audiences if your key audience happens to be within the engineering and tech community.
There is no point denying it – we do want to attract and engage with like-minded professionals and of course these metrics and impacts matter to MOO and to me personally, a lot. But this is not why I got excited about this proposal when it first came up, and it’s definitely not what I hope will become the core focus for our writers as they populate these pages.
Out of all the stats I saw when reading up on blogs, one stood out to me especially: 94% of people who share posts do so because they think it might be helpful to others.
I'm gonna make a wild guess and assume that this percentage is even higher for technology blogs. The reason why it resonates so well with me is that it proves what we always instinctively want to believe – that when you focus on doing the right thing, you will get the benefits you are seeking. When you focus your efforts on providing useful, practical advice, when you set out to share your experiences and help your readers, they will reward you by passing the goodness forwards through their network, and helpfully moving your engagement stats up in the process!
It's an approach I can definitely vouch for based on my brief experience with technical blogging – the most popular post I shared on my personal Blogger account was a simple step by step description of a fix for a configuration issue in a maven plugin. It’s short, it offers code snippets you can copy and paste from and it solves an actual problem other engineers had at the time. The blog has been dead for years now but this post still gets hits to this day.
In fact, every time I put something out there for the wider audiences to experience – whether it's an article, tweet, art tutorial or a conference talk, I received my best feedback when I delivered something that others found useful, practical or actionable. It’s incredibly rewarding and it helps you build better relationships with your audiences going forward.
Ultimately, this is the why and the what of MOO’s technology blog. It is a new way for our teams to offer their expertise and share their experiences with wider technology and engineering communities. It’s our way to give back, to help out and to share. It offers an accessible format that requires little experience from our writers and causes much less stress than a conference talk would. It will compliment our tech twitter account, as well as the meetups organized in our offices and the talks we share at various conferences. We hope that it will reach new readers and allow our writers to make new connections. It will become a one-stop-shop to keep in touch with us and keep up to date with all things MOO tech.
I, for one, can’t wait to read all the posts coming out in the next few weeks, months – and hopefully even years to come!
Thank you to everyone who already contributed their posts, to the wonderful editorial team and to the engineering management team who helped to push this project forwards. A special shout out to Amy Phillips – without your conviction and persistence this post wouldn’t have been published today.