Blog Workshop 2013 - Highland Park Public Library


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Why should you start a blog? Find out about easy blogging tools, how often to blog, and what to write in a blog. Do you write? Take photos? Run a business? Work for a non-profit? All or any of the above? Workshop explored both the technical aspects of blogging (how to set up a blog) and the social aspects (how to get and maintain readers). We also talked about on blogging for monetary gain as well. Many small businesses can benefit from running a blog. Presentation by Leora Wenger, library webmaster.

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Blog Workshop 2013 - Highland Park Public Library

  1. 1. with Leora WengerHighland Park Public LibraryJune 18, 2013
  2. 2. Why Blog?
  3. 3. Why Blog?• You love sharing writing• You love sharing photos• You have a business to promote• You get to meet people around the world• If you loved writing as a child, now is the time to go back toan old passion.• You get to meet fantastic people.• It challenges your writing style and skills.• You can share the things that make you tick: food, books,films, art, movies, maybe even religion or politics.• Blogging makes you see things differently as you startseeing them through the eyes of your readers.
  4. 4. Content is King• Be prepared to invest the time to post on aregular basis.• Write content which has NOT been seen orread elsewhere and work to get otherbloggers to notice you and your blog.• Focus on one piece of information. A blogentry on a recipe on American apple pie canbe identical to all others except maybe in howyou make or decorate the top crust.
  5. 5. Importance of Commenting• Meet other bloggers• Get links back to your own blog• Establish authority in your niche• Respond to comments on your own blog sothat you can meaningfully engage with yourreaders.• CommentLuv plugin
  6. 6. Sample Comment Area
  7. 7. Blog vs. Website• Blog consists of articles (called posts) andmaybe a few informational pages. Blogs canbe organized by categories and by tags. Onemight be able to view all posts in a setcategory on one page.• Websites are often pages, possibly stores,event calendars, and more – they can includea blog (or blogs).
  8. 8. Make Money Blogging?• Not at first - work on getting an audience• Three methods:1. Sell your own product or services2. Sell someone else’s – ads on your site,Google ads, affiliate marketing3. Set up a donation box (ex. use Paypal) –works mainly for non-profit organizations.
  9. 9. Business blog example:
  10. 10.
  11. 11. Wonder of Tech
  12. 12. Just Ask Kim
  13. 13. Keep Up Webby Sherryl Perry
  14. 14. Platforms for Blogging• Blogger•• Self-hosted WordPress <-my favorite• Tumblr• Google+• YouTube – video as a form of blogging? As acomplement to one’s blog.
  15. 15. Even if you use a free site or Blogger, youmay later decide you want tomonetize. Be prepared.Buy your domain
  16. 16. Urbach Avraham blog
  17. 17. Cheese Guy blog
  18. 18. Why Self-hosted• You own the blog (instead of borrowing space)• Lots of plugin and theme choices• Establish business authority – shows you takeyour business seriously, and others should,too.• Backups and ability to move blog to otherhosts
  19. 19. Leora Wenger, Sketching Out blog example of self-hosted WordPress
  20. 20. SEO (search engine optimization)• SEO is about getting higher ranking in searchengines, especially Google• On Page Optimization – title tags, key words,header tags, meta description• Incoming Links or Link Popularity – one reasonwhy Guest Blogging is so popular
  21. 21. • Promote a new service• Meet potential clients• Improve SEO for your site• Get feedback on your service or product oryour marketing efforts
  22. 22. Set a Strong Password• Use as many different characters as possiblewhen forming your password. Use numbers,punctuation characters and, when possible,mixed upper and lower-case letters. Choosingcharacters from the largest possible alphabetwill make your password more secure.
  23. 23. About SEO“Write for the reader,tweak for the searchengines.”
  24. 24. Promote Your Blog• Leave comments on related blogs – make sureto include a link back to your blog• Use social media – Twitter, Google+, LinkedIngroups (such as Bloggers Helping Bloggers),Facebook. Even better than tweeting yourown posts is when people like your content somuch they tweet/share it.• Be friendly to other bloggers.
  25. 25. Guest Posting• Write a guest post for someone else’s blog• Allow guest posts on your own blog• Guest posting is a way introduce your writingto new blog communities• It is also is a top way to get backlinks to yourwebsite – crucial in this tough businessenvironment.
  26. 26.
  27. 27. Images for Blog Posts• Best method: create your own. Take photos.Make illustrations.• Other ideas: use public domain photos. Or useCreative Commons photos and give credit if askedto do so.• See:• Pinterest: images can be pinned for more trafficto your blog.• Alt tags: important for SEO, visually-impaired• Be aware of lawsuits. Don’t use images illegally.
  28. 28. When you visit a new blog,read comments. Visit someof the blogs of those whoare commenting. If theycomment on one blog, theymight comment on yours.
  29. 29. Beware of Spam• Akismet – comes with WordPress• If a comment has a funny sounding link andthe comment is so general and in no wayrelates to the post, it is probably spam. Deleteit.• Some bloggers employ CAPTCHA or click thisto prove you are human plugins.
  30. 30. Fancy Girl Must
  31. 31. What Next?• Exchange business cards and/or blogaddresses with others in the room• Have fun with blogging – enjoy theexperience.