Blog Workshop Summer 2013 at Highland Park Public Library, NJ


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How do you set up a blog? What is the difference between a blog and a website? How to you get people to read your blog? Comment. See some successful blogs. What is SEO? What does a comment form look like? Did I mention comment? Comment on other blogs, especially blogs in your niche.

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Blog Workshop Summer 2013 at Highland Park Public Library, NJ

  1. 1. with Leora Wenger Highland Park Public Library July 22, 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 to an 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 start seeing them through the eyes of your readers.
  4. 4. Content is King • Be prepared to invest the time to post on a regular basis. • Write content which has NOT been seen or read elsewhere and work to get other bloggers to notice you and your blog. • Focus on one piece of information. A blog entry on a recipe on American apple pie can be identical to all others except maybe in how you make or decorate the top crust.
  5. 5. Importance of Commenting • Meet other bloggers
  6. 6. Importance of Commenting • Meet other bloggers • Get links back to your own blog
  7. 7. Importance of Commenting • Meet other bloggers • Get links back to your own blog • Establish authority in your niche
  8. 8. 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 so that you can meaningfully engage with your readers.
  9. 9. Sample Comment Area
  10. 10. Blog vs. Website • Blog consists of articles (called posts) and maybe a few informational pages. Blogs can be organized by categories and by tags. One might be able to view all posts in a set category on one page. • Websites are often pages, possibly stores, event calendars, and more – they can include a blog (or blogs).
  11. 11. Make Money Blogging? • Not at first - work on getting an audience • Three methods: 1. Sell your own product or services 2. Sell someone else’s – ads on your site, Google ads, affiliate marketing 3. Set up a donation box (ex. use Paypal) – works mainly for non-profit organizations.
  12. 12. Business blog example:
  13. 13. Finding Our Way
  14. 14. “Blogging Leads to Bookings”
  15. 15. Platforms for Blogging • Blogger • • Self-hosted WordPress <-my favorite • Tumblr • Google+ • YouTube – video as a form of blogging? As a complement to one’s blog.
  16. 16. Even if you use a free site like or Blogger, you may later decide you want to monetize. Be prepared. Buy your domain
  17. 17. Keep Middlesex Moving 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 take your business seriously, and others should, too. • Backups and ability to move blog to other hosts
  19. 19. Leora Wenger, Sketching Out blog An example of self-hosted WordPress
  20. 20. Codex: Installing WordPress
  21. 21. SEO (search engine optimization) • SEO is about getting higher ranking in search engines, especially Google • On Page Optimization – title tags, key words, header tags, meta description • Incoming Links or Link Popularity – one reason why Guest Blogging is so popular
  22. 22. • Promote a new service • Meet potential clients • Improve SEO for your site • Get feedback on your service or product or your marketing efforts
  23. 23. Set a Strong Password • Use as many different characters as possible when forming your password. Use numbers, punctuation characters and, when possible, mixed upper and lower-case letters. Choosing characters from the largest possible alphabet will make your password more secure.
  24. 24. About SEO “Write for the reader, tweak for the search engines.”
  25. 25. Promote Your Blog • Leave comments on related blogs – make sure to include a link back to your blog • Use social media – Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn groups (such as Bloggers Helping Bloggers), Facebook. Even better than tweeting your own posts is when people like your content so much they tweet/share it. • Be friendly to other bloggers.
  26. 26. 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 writing to new blog communities • It is also is a top way to get backlinks to your website – crucial in this tough business environment.
  27. 27.
  28. 28. Images for Blog Posts • Best method: create your own. Take photos. Make illustrations. • Other ideas: use public domain photos. Or use Creative Commons photos and give credit if asked to do so. • See: • Pinterest: images can be pinned for more traffic to your blog. • Alt tags: important for SEO, visually-impaired • Be aware of lawsuits. Don’t use images illegally.
  29. 29. When you visit a new blog, read comments. Visit some of the blogs of those who are commenting. If they comment on one blog, they might comment on yours.
  30. 30. Skywatch Friday – a photo meme
  31. 31. Beware of Spam • Akismet – comes with WordPress • If a comment has a funny sounding link and the comment is so general and in no way relates to the post, it is probably spam. Delete it. • Some bloggers employ CAPTCHA or click this to prove you are human plugins.
  32. 32. How do you find other bloggers in your niche?
  33. 33. Hannah’s Nook
  34. 34. What Next? • Exchange business cards and/or blog addresses with others in the room • Have fun with blogging – enjoy the experience.