More Ways to Connect Your Community …
It is day 4 of the 9 day experiment where I implement each and every one of Chris’ blogging secrets on my home business blog (these secrets are from his “27 Blogging Secrets to Power Your Community” article). The three I tried today, numbers 11, 12, and 13, were all techie-type secrets and while I’m not a total slouch in this department they took a little longer than I thought. I will tell you exactly what went right and wrong with each secret, how long it took, and if any money was spent in the process!
Secret #13: Change Permalinks
Chris suggests changing the permalinks on your blog (a permalink is the link that goes with each specific blog post) so that they reflect the title of the post. Mine had been generic before I made the change and the permalinks tended to look like this: domain/blog/post=182. The good thing about these permalinks is that they are short. The bad thing is that they are not descriptive. Chris says changing the permalinks is a strictly personal preference thing and I think it probably also gives you a keyword advantage. I gave it try on my home business blog. It was as easy as going into the Settings menu in WordPress and clicking a button. This secret was simple to implement but it adds an extra step if I want to shorten the permalink for Twitter or other social media services.
Time Spent: 5 minutes (plus 1 minute every time I have to shorten a permalink)
Dinero Spent: $0
Secret #11: Ways to Connect
Chris takes a proactive approach when it comes to connecting with people in his community. In the upper right corner of his blog you will find four ways to connect. You can subscribe to his newsletter, get his rss feed, follow him on Twitter, or get the blog delivered to your inbox. It looked great. I don’t have a newsletter on my site or home business blog so I skipped that step, but I did add an rss feed link, a Twitter follow link, and an email subscription form for the blog. This secret took the longest to implement and was the most difficult of the three. Chris freely admits that he has someone putting many of his techie improvements on his blog, but I did my own.
Adding the link to the rss feed was the simplest. I just created an icon and linked it to my Feedburner link. I created another simple icon for the Twitter follow link. The most difficult was creating a form so people could receive my home business blog posts via email. Although Feedburner had a “101″ help section, I could not find instructions on how to install this feature so I actually Googled for help. I found several instruction guides on blogs and, using these instructions, was able to go back into Feedburner and get the email subscription code from the Publicize tab. I then had to create a text widget in the sidebar of my Thesis theme and paste the html code. It all worked fine. All in all, unless you are pretty savvy on blog technology, this secret can prove a little difficult to implement. I spent more time than I anticipated giving people extra ways to connect with my home business blog, and at the same time I really like the end result.
Time Spent: 1 hour
Dinero Spent: $0
Secret #12: Technorati
In this secret Chris suggests “claiming” your blog on Technorati, which just means registering your blog with Technorati. Technorati is basically a search engine (a very popular one) geared toward the needs of people wanting to search blogs. Once you “claim” your blog, the Technorati site will begin spidering and indexing your blog. This helps people find your blog and drive traffic there. I signed up for a Technorati account and claimed my home business blog. The process was simple but the Technorati site was busy several times and it took me about 45 minutes to finish the process. This included entering my blog address, posting a link on the front page of my blog so Technorati knew that I owned the blog, and then filling in the rest of my profile. Aside from the minor delays working with Technorati, this secret was easy to implement and, according to Chris and other internet gurus, it’s worth it!
Time Spent: 45 minutes
Dinero Spent: $0
So far traffic to my home business blog continues to be high and to climb steadily (not always quickly, though) daily. This means that the tips are working and I am very, very pleased! Thank you Chris!
Have questions or comments about this blogging experiment or anything else? Toss me a comment (or a cookie works too … )!