Most of the clients that I deal with are either very busy entrepreneurs with no time or interest to peruse the Internet for Blogging tutorials, they are just plain techno-phobic (have trouble sending an email) or they have a limited budget. They usually aren’t a whole lot like me. I was a nut case constantly seeking out ways to teach myself all this stuff. I found it fascinating.
It’s funny, because even though I was a theatre junkie in high school and college with a very right side type of brain, I took an aptitude test and my score came out highest in mechanical reasoning. I never could figure it out, until I started blogging. It seems like every day I’m solving some type of blog problem or learning a new technique. It’s keeping my brain active since I’ve become a card carrying member of AARP. (Yes, I’m not a spring chicken – although I have the heart of one and definitely sound like one) So, if I can blog, you probably can too. Or at least you could do the most important part which is to market your content by writing blog posts.
Content marketing is the new word for blogging because most people don’t understand exactly what blogging is. They think it’s an over-indulgent way people talk about themselves online. In reality, blogging, or “content marketing” is a powerful and very affordable way to create effective visibility online. Notice I said “effective.” There are tons of ways to play around online, but if you use your blog strategically, it’s a kick butt marketing technique.
So let’s call it content marketing. What is that?
Content marketing is when you put valuable and frequent content on your website that people are searching for. Your content must be worth reading for people to stay on your site, and that content needs to be updated on a regular basis. This allows Google and other search engines to send a constant stream of visitors to your “place of business” online. A spiffy little Website Tonight site is not going to cut it. That’s why business professionals and entrepreneurs use blog platforms, specifically WordPress.
Here are 4 things you need to know how to do.
(this is assuming you already have a site up. If you aren’t the technical type, chances are you have no clue how to get your site up and don’t really care to know. – If you need help with this contact us HERE)
- You need to know how to log in.
For WordPress there is back office “online” login for your site. If you don’t have a link on your home page that says LOGIN, then all you have to do is go to http://www.yoursitename.com/wp-admin (replace yoursitename with your own site’s name) This sounds simple but you would be surprised at how many people can’t figure out how to get into their blog.
That address will take you here:
- Know how to change your profile and password.
Make sure you keep a copy of your user name and password someplace that you can easily access. If you forgot your password (one whack with a wet noodle) just click on “Lost your password.” WordPress will send you a crazy looking generated password. Don’t worry, you can change it back to something easier to remember by going into your back office. (This is also known as your Dashboard after you log in) Look for the HOWDY at the top of the page and click on it. A drop down will appear that says EDIT MY PROFILE. Scroll down a ways on the page and find “New Password.” Enter a new password, and save changes.
- Know the Difference between a Page and a Post
The post and page editors look almost the same, but what they are used for is very different. A page is static, meaning it is not part of your news feed. Pages are generally seen on your navigation bar such as ABOUT, CONTACT, WORK WITH ME, etc. They may also be hidden from view such as a THANK YOU or DOWNLOAD page. A post is an article, other type of news story, tip, event announcement, or something similar. To get your content seen and shared on other sites, focus on writing posts. When you look at your dashboard menu you will see this:
Hover your mouse over the word POSTS. A drop down will appear that says ADD NEW. Click ADD NEW.
This takes you to the post editor. The editor will look something like the image below:
(click on the image to see a larger view)
(the visual editor is similar to Microsoft Word. A plugin called Tiny MCE Advanced can be uploaded to embellish the editor with more fun buttons.)
- Know what a widget is.
Hopefully your blog has widgets, because it makes adding items to your sidebar is SOOOO much easier. Most free or premium WordPress themes are now widgetized. However, you may have had a creative web person design you a WordPress site without widgets and he or she charged you an enormous amount of money to set it up.
I just talked to a guy who spent $30,000 to get a WordPress site up. OOOOOOUCH! That’s insane!
The problem with a WordPress theme without widgets is that all the elements in the sidebar and other areas are specially coded into the theme’s editor. If you need to make a change, you have to call your web designer, unless you are proficient in editing php code. Most ordinary business people are not. You can blow out the site if you make even the slightest mistake. SCARY! This is a way your web designer can get you to call so that you will be charged extra for simple fixes!!! Themes without widgets are NOT necessary, unless you do not ever want to touch your website yourself. One of the reasons many business owners choose WordPress over an HTML site is that they have to ability to easily edit items such as a phone number, event dates or anything else for that matter. As far as price, a Premium Theme has everything anyone would need for marketing and only costs between about $40-$80. (This is the cost of the theme itself – not including setup) BIG DIFFERENCE! Plus a premium theme is constantly updated for new technologies. This is HUGE! If your web person has designed you a theme without widgets – CHEW HIM OR HER OUT NOW!
To find your widgets go to APPEARANCE – WIDGETS (click image to view larger size)
This is enough to get you started and on your way to some serious “content marketing.” Remember, the more content you write, the better chance Google will pick it up and send visitors to your site to check you out. That’s what content marketing is all about and it ROCKS!
What confuses you the most about WordPress or blogging in general? Please leave a comment and let us know.