Blogging for Educational Associations

I am speaking to a lunch meeting of the Consortium of Educational Association Publishers today, along with Franklin Bradley who works for the Association of Supervision and Curriculum Development. I will be introducing the concept of blogging and how it might be used by associations. Bradley will be doing a case study on how his association recently used an event blog tied to their annual meeting.

I am going to ask the attendees to post their feedback on the session here after we are done.

Here are a set of links for some of the sites and services I will mention during the session.

I would also like to offer a big thank you to FeedBurner, SixApart, Ranchero, and NewsGator for contributing discounts and freebies for me to give away at the session.

Update: Here is the handout from today’s session. I moved it into HTML since the PDF ended up being rather large.

8 thoughts on “Blogging for Educational Associations

  1. Thank you for the presentation! I learned more about blogs. Now I am interested to see just how other education associations are using blogs. It seems like the association use of blogs isn’t really in the original spirit of blogging. Perhaps that is because most associations do not represent a single, personal voice.

  2. I attended your presentation today, hoping to gain new insight about how blogs work, their value to people, to businesses and particularly our association. I wasn’t disappointed. Thanks for great information, for feeding our passion for good communication, and for your understanding of where most of us were with entry level, neophyte, pre-freshman interests and curiosities about blogging. Now we’re true freshmen, right?

  3. Excellent presentation – pitched especially well for those of us editors who know so little about the weblog phenomenon. One correction to your introductory section above: Your co-presenter’s name is transpoed. It should read Franklin Bradley.

  4. Thanks very much for all the comments so far! I really enjoyed speaking to the group today and thought the discussion we had was quite good. Also, thanks very much to Franklin who provided such a great case study on his association’s experience with an event-oriented weblog over the past couple of years. (Transpo fixed!) I thought his point about how they discovered their audience during the event was everyone who was not attending rather than those on site was especially valuable.

    I’ll have my handout posted shortly and will update this post with the link.

    As to Monique’s comment on associations and the voice they have on a blog, I think associations can certainly have an engaging personal voice if they can muster the courage to do so. For example, I think the National School Board Association’s blog (see the link list reference in this post) has a wonderful tone of voice that is very frank and interesting to read.

  5. Thanks to all who helped make yesterday’s session a valuable one!

    Since spam comments were touched on in the session, I’d like to share a problem we’re been having with the International Reading Association’s news blog, Reading Today Daily ( A few months ago, wave after wave of increasingly vile spam overwhelmed our comment pages. The only way we knew of to delete them was one at a time — an incredibly time consuming chore! In the end, we caved in and shut down our comment section completely. But I can’t help wondering if anyone else in our community has faced a similar problem and solved it successfully.

    If you’ve managed to beat these barbarians of the blogosphere, I’d appreciate hearing your suggestions. E-mail me at Many thanks!

  6. I really enjoyed your presentation. I’ve been following news blogs for the past couple of years, but appreciated your recommendations on how associations can use them. One comment that stood out for me: “Blogs are good PR for your organization.” I’m interested to see how many associations will begin to use blogs as a PR tool. Do you have any idea how many associations currently have blogs? BTW, I really enjoy reading NSBA’s

  7. I really enjoyed yesterday’s session. I feel like I can now put together a list of the things you need to have in place in order to do a blog. I also have alist of all the types of blogs we could potentially do. A good follow-up session might be how to get your assoication to accept the kind of culture that you need to successfully communicate with members openly and honestly. I know that is going to be our biggest obstacle.

  8. Thanks to everyone who attended. David’s presentation included everything you need to know about blogs to get started (and then some). I appreciated everyone’s questions and insights about our annual conference blog. It’s nice to see so that there are so many organizations interested in blogging.

    For those interested in taking a closer look at our annual conference blog, you can go to You can also follow our progress as we blog our Summer Conference at

    As for other associations that blog, I think that the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) blog is a good example of one that has a conversational voice that is distinct from their official association voice:

    Other than David’s blog, another good source of information for associations interested in blogging is Kevin Holland’s aptly named Association Blog:

    A blog of particular interest to educators and education associations interested in how to best use technology in education and the support of educators is the eSchool News multiauthor blog, ed-tech insider: It shows how a blog can be personal and diverse, and how it’s possible to divide the workload and yet still maintain a coherent whole.

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