Recently, somebody made a good point to me while I was selling her on the idea of doing a blog. She wondered how we could get busy people to read the blog — without having to visit the site to look for updates, or without needing to subscribe to yet-another e-mail alert.
I explained how I use iGoogle and, to a lesser extent, Google Reader to read the latest posts on 10-15 blogs on my must-read list. I also among a few old-timers who use the Feeds area in my Internet Explorer browser to keep track of blogs and Twitter search term updates, but I didn’t want to go into that.
For me, it’s been very time-effective to have connections to about 10 blogs on my iGoogle page. I can see the name of each blog — as well as the three most-recent posts on each. Also, I do subscribe to other feeds through Google Reader, which appears on my iGoogle page, too. But I haven’t learned near as much about Google Reader as I should. I’ve read several posts lately about power users who employ the Reader to manage subscriptions to dozens of blogs and websites. I’ve got room for improvement in that area.
All of this makes me really appreciate that I took a home-study course years back about RSS (Really Simple Syndication). I take it for granted that people know to click on that ever-present orange square to subscribe to blogs and websites. No need to go visit the blog to see if it’s been updated. No necessity to subscribe to yet-another e-mail.
Yet I’m finding that a lot of people aren’t familiar with RSS, iGoogle and Google Reader, or Internet Explorer Feeds. Another opportunity for me to share some of what I’ve learned about these tools.
I’m really curious to hear how you manage your blog reading. Please let me know in the comments section.