the Portal

my window on the world: small business, communications, social media, and beyond

the Portal header image 2

11 Houston Bloggers to Follow

November 13th, 2010 · 7 Comments · blogging

I gave a class recently for University of Houstons Small Business Development Center on Social Media for Small Business. In it, I encountered an audience far more interested in the “big three” of  Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter than they were in blogging.

They’re wrong about that. Blogs are a simple and affordable way to stake out a place that’s all your own on the Web. Take a look at how 12 companies, non-profits and solopreneurs are using blogs to expand their customer/client base and solidify their brand.

Professional Services

Click “Read More,” below, to find blogs pertaining to

  • Retail and Commercial
  • Non-Profits
  • Arts, Music, FOOD

Retail and Commercial

  • Smart Meals® serves healthy, prepackaged meals and provides customers with the resources to live life to the fullest. These guys also have a finely-honed social conscience, e.g. a partnership with Recipe for Success Foundation to raise awareness about childhood obesity. Truth is, the company does good just by offering a healthy product line and a blog to educate, link readers to worthy non-profit programs, and inspire menu diversity. Surprisingly, their posts aren’t open to comment. Follow them anyway — you’ll learn something and definitely eat better.
  • Danielle Guilbeau is like everyone’s best girlfriend. She knows everyone and when she comes into the room a crowd gathers. Those are great qualities in a realtor, great qualities for any businesswoman or friend. If you read Houston Living, you’ll learn some things about properties around town, the details of the Houston preservation ordinance, and a whole bunch of other cool stuff . . . like where the hell to find a decent iced tea in this town and how hard it is to get Splenda with that.
  • I learned about Hometta in June, at the TEDx Conference, and they were a revelation to me: a cross between architect-designed housing and mass-market “dreck.” They offer a green, user-friendly, affordable route to home ownership. And their designs are . . . COOL. Any purveyor of product can find things to copy from their blog, Making Modern Plans. All it takes is some careful thought about how to provide ideas for living in or organizing your small corner of the world. Hometta does this, in spades.


Arts, Music,FOOD

  • Robinson Marketing for Orchestras, is a fabulous example of how a solo-practitioner can promote a marketing or consulting business online just by providing interesting, helpful content.  A lot of Bruce Robinson‘s articles are useful to any marketer, not just an arts one; e.g., Facebook Ads: Targeted Advertising at a Fraction of the Cost. But his Renaissance tastes span a wider gamut of resources and fluff. See, for example,  Ten Lessons in Trust to Apply Before a Crisis and don’t miss 20 Orchestral Orgasms.
  • Grassman Blogette is the product of local Houston singer/songwriter Jennifer Grassman. It’s a one-year chronicle of her life as an itinerant, independent artist. Through short posts, lots of variety, she depicts the  HARD work that goes into breaking into (and supporting yourself  in) show business. Sunshine, Bigotry and the Gulf of Mexico offers a taste of Jennifer’s daily life.
  • I’m all for arts & music. But, to me, the finest of the fine arts is . . . food. And the finest of all food is tacos. Guns and Tacos, by Jay Rascoe, ROCKS. Finding a blog about tacos is thrilling for me — even though my inner liberal Democrat wrestles a bit with the Guns part. Never mind that. His article Dear Taco Bell Truck: Skip Houston manages to run a spear through Taco Bell and other plastic chainey places, write good copy, and drop in a few links to Jay’s idea of real food. His blog roll is any foodie’s dream. But note, especially, the handy Google map with dozens of handy flags links to Jay’s best picks . . . and, if you’re looking, the local gun ranges.

And there you have 12 of my many favorite local blogs. NOW, let me hear your thoughts about any of these, but also nominees of your own.

Tags: ··

7 Comments so far ↓

  • Houstonblogger

    Wow! Thanks so much Jay! That’s so nice of you. :)

  • EWKrause

    Thanks for dropping by, Danielle, and keep up the good work. Loved the Iced Tea post!

  • EWKrause

    You know, Jay, I’m one’a your groupies — carry a list of your recommendations around in the car with me, ready for my next taco craving. Who knows, I may even stop by a gun range sometime soon. I’ve long wanted to learn how to skeet shoot — something about breaking crockery with a shotgun really appeals to me.

  • EWKrause

    Hi, Joel! Thanks for the feedback. Good to know about WHAM — turns out I may get to attend after all!

  • Joel Luks

    Great list and thanks for including one of my fav orgs. Spacetaker. FYI. WHAM (Winter Holiday Art Market) hasn’t happened. It is actually this weekend :) Vendor breakfast is 11/20.

  • Houstonblogger

    Wow!! Thanks, Elaine. Such great company I’m with and I’m very honored to make your list. Thank you so much.

  • Jay

    Many thanks for the mention! Danelle Guilbeau is a good friend of mine, and she can find anyone in this city a great deal on a house or apartment.

Leave a Comment