I’m very excited about this new series I am working on. I started thinking about this idea when we were all chatting about readers and feeds and RSS (oh my!). I got a real sense that, as a group, our comfort levels with blogging technology are kind of all over the place.
[Confused? RSS is a news feed for your blog. People subscribe to your blog’s RSS feed, and then they receive a notification in their RSS reader any time you publish a post. It’s handier than having to remember to visit your website every day looking for something new. One of the most popular RSS readers is going away in a few months, and that has prompted a discussion or two here about alternatives.]
One of the things we discussed was the fact that it was hard to give up RSS because many of the blogs we like to read don’t offer any other way to be notified of new posts. That stuck with me. There is a good number of us (and by “us” I mean art/craft/creative-living bloggers) who know very little about how our blogs work outside of pressing the Publish button. And many of us are too intimidated by the unfamiliar to even try learning.
I’ve been blogging since 2005, and have been on my own self-hosted installation since 2007. In that time, I’ve done a whole lot of tinkering around with this website, and I know a thing or two about publishing a blog post. Yes, it starts with pressing that button, but if you want to build an audience there is so much more to be done.
And it’s not hard.
If you didn’t grow up with computers, if you have no idea what most of the items on your blog dashboard do, and if you want more than just your daughter and your best friend from high school to read your posts, then this series is for you. I will explain – in plain english, and with illustrations – what simple steps you can take to get people reading your blog on a regular basis.
Nearly every blog has an RSS feed built right in, so maybe you’ve managed to attract readers who were savvy enough to know their way around a feed reader. But with Google Reader going away, and RSS usage in general on the decline, you’re going to have to provide other ways for potential fans to keep in touch. I’ll be kicking off this open-ended series by showing you ways to attract and keep an audience using technology. Trust me, this is not as hard as it may sound! After we’ve covered those basics, perhaps we’ll move on to other interesting uses of technology in blogging.
My plan is to kick off the series tomorrow (Tuesday) with this topic: Email Notifications.
I hope you’ll join me, and invite a friend!
Now, there is one thing I could use your help with: a title!
Here are a few of my ideas:
- Tech Tips for Creative Blogs
- Blogging Without Tears
- Technology: It Doesn’t Bite!
Any other ideas? It needs to be short, snappy, and reflect the fact that I can help you, even if you are intimidated by all of the bells and whistles on your blog dashboard.
If one of you comes up with a title I love, I’ll send you a little prize (one of my ebooks, perhaps?)