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Blogging Mistakes for Beginners

I was researching best practices in blogs the other day and come upon an article that Hubspot did: The Fundamentals of Business Blogging that is worth repeating.

“Seven Easily-Avoided Mistakes for Beginners   1.  Never actually launching it:  This is likely the most common mistake.  Sure, you’ve been meaning to get your blog kicked off.  You may have even authored your first article.  But guess what, it’s not a blog until you actually publish something.   
2.  Using a sub-domain (ex: myblog.typepad.com):  If you’re going to go to the trouble to start a blog, then you owe it to yourself to get started right.  Even if you decide to use one of the many popular free blogging services, you should register your own domain name.  There are many reasons for this, but the most important is control over your website URL.  This is one of the few decisions about your blog that is going to be difficult to fix later.  Trust me on this one, the price is worth it.  [Note to self:  Add a check to the website grader to let people know when they’ve made this blunder] 
3.  Spending too much time on design: Don’t let the design of your blog get you bogged down.  Pick one of the many existing templates out there that are free or close to it and go ahead and get started.  You can always change templates later.  Besides, blogs are fundamentally about content.  Aesthetics help, but your first focus should be on authoring great content.  
4.  Not telling anyone about it: The beginning days of a blog are the hardest.  You don’t have anyone linking to you, the search engines are not ranking you (and maybe not even indexing you).  So, there’s really only one source of traffic:  Direct contact.  The best way to get a new blog launched is to tell people in your network that you now have a blog.  Many people are a little reluctant to do this becomes it seems vain or boastful.  As long as you’re sending the notification to people who have an interest in your topic, there’s nothing wrong with it.  
5.  Getting discouraged too early: Most things in life worth doing take time.  Blogging is no different.  You should give yourself at least 6 months (perhaps even a year) to determine what kind of interest there is out there before giving up due to lack of traffic.  Early momentum is hard, but once things start moving, lots of things will start working in your favor.   
6.  Too many widgets: Given how easy it is to add various blog widgets to your blog, it’s tempting to go overboard.  Resist the temptation.  In the early weeks, focus on the basics:  Content, comments, categories and perhaps a blog roll.  Save the fancy stuff for later.  
7.  Monetizing too early: Just because Google makes it easy to throw ads up on your blog doesn’t mean you should.  With minimal traffic, the amount of money you are going to make is negligible (probably pennies a day).  If you’re serious about blogging, you’ll first focus on building an audience before even attempting to try to make money at it.  Trying ads out on your blog too early will reduce the chances of your getting that critical early traffic.
 
You don’t have to blunder in the beginning of your blogging efforts.  HubSpot’s training and support program make it super simple and easy for you.”

This is so true even today, now that Google has changed the way to searched and gives relevance to blogs.  Changes in the way to bring blogs to market are in order if you are starting today.  If you already have a well established blog that is getting good traffic, then I would not touch it and start a second blog and grow that for the new ways fo the blogging world.

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Creating fan pages in Facebook for blogs or your company step by step

Quick Online tips  did a great blog on  “How to create a  Facebook page for your blog”. This information is really good for anyone who wants to set up a fans page and integrate it with your blog. What I like about it is they give a step by step with pictures as to what you need to look for at each step.  This is a must bookmark for future use.

Quick Online Tips blog and email that I read and is a really great publication to read on a daily basis.

Here is the blog on this subject from them.

“Guest Post By Dee Barizo
Do you know how to create Facebook page for your blog? A couple days ago, I was doing research on my blog’s niche. I wanted to know which social media sites were being used by my audience. Did they have blogs? Were they active on Twitter or forums? Did they participate in MySpace or Facebook?

I found out that Facebook was a popular place to hang out. Also, my referral stats showed that I was getting traffic from Facebook even though I never promoted my blog there. With these things in mind, I created a Facebook Page for my blog. I’m planning to use the page to join the conversation on Facebook. Hopefully, the result will be more traffic and increased branding.

Step by Step Guide to Create Facebook Pages

Here’s a step by step guide for creating your own Facebook page.

1. Log in to Facebook.

To create a page, you must have a personal account. If you don’t have your own account, go to the Facebook home page and sign up.

2. Go to Create New Facebook Page

For category, chose “Brand, Product, or Organization” and then scroll down on the drop down menu and choose “Website”. On the next section, enter the name of your page. I just used the name of my blog. Click “Create Page”.

fb-page-opening-screen

3. Add a relevant image.

Move the mouse pointer to the question mark on the left and you’ll see the words “Change Picture” pop up. Click it to add an image related to your blog. I used an image from my header but you can also use your logo or icon.

change-picture

4. Include information about your blog.

Click the “Info” tab and then “Edit Information” on the right.

edit-info

Type in the relevant information including the date your blog was founded, the URL, and an overview.

site-info

5. Import your RSS feed.

By importing your RSS feed, your Wall will be populated with your newest posts. Also, it will be updated whenever you publish a new post. Go to the left sidebar and under your picture, click “Edit Page”.

edit-page

Scroll down until you see the Notes application. Then click “Edit”.

notes-edit

Look to the right and click “Import a blog”.

import-a-blog

Enter your RSS feed URL, click the check box, and click “Start Importing”.

enter-rss-feed

Click “Confirm Import” on the right.

confirm-import

6. Write a short blurb about your blog.

You’re back on the home page. Look to your right, click the fifth link under the picture, and write a short blurb.

short-blurb

Final Facebook Page

You’re done! That’s all there is to it. Here’s the final product.

final-fb-page

Oh, one last thing. Don’t forget to become a fan of your new page.

become-a-fan