Archive for November, 2010

20
Nov

Blogging Platforms: #1 What Do I Use?!

Written by cormiston. Posted in Blogging, Blogging Platforms, Social Media

So you want to be a blogger! Maybe you’ve blogged hundreds of times, maybe a few, and maybe you’re just someone who skims blogs and has the sudden inclination to try it yourself. Good for you!

Now what blog service do you use?

If you didn’t know, there are dozens, if not several dozen blogging sites out on the Internet – and I’m only talking about the popular ones. It can be a bit overwhelming to figure out which is right for you, and like insurance or clothing, you want one that will give you the functionality that bests suits your interests.

So what type of blogger are you?

Chances are, you’re a hobbyists. According to Technorati.com, hobbyists make up the largest percentage of their annual survey of the blogosphere (other categories included self-employed, part-timers, and professionals).

72% of respondents in the 2009 survey said they blog for fun, usually about whatever is on their mind. Most of these hobbyists update weekly and don’t make money off their online blog.

However, some people blog professionally and do make good money; some even make six figured salaries that would make doctors jealous! (Check out the 30 top earners!)

Granted, most of us won’t be making that much a year in our lives. But still, we blog anyway, and as you can suspect, the needs of a recreational blogger are different from a professional or power blogger.

First, decide what you want to use your blog for. For fun, for profit, for advertising? Who do you want to see this blog? How many people do you want to reach, if any? How you use your blog is going to help determine which blogging platform you choose.

For example, a hobbyist blogger won’t care if they have their host site in the blog title URL (ex. blogtitle.blogspot.com). It doesn’t necessarily matter that their blog doesn’t have it’s own domain name as the blog is for fun or for personal venting.

On the other hand, if you’re wanting to advertise your business or company with a blog, having the host site in your URL name might not be professional enough, and could make your blog seem to have less authority. Thus, a TypePad blog might be a better choice.

Also consider how customizable you want your blog. Do you want to post and go, or do you want to be able to tweak how many columns the page has, where such features as Follow Me Twitter banners are, and etc. Again, some blogs are more customizable, and can range in ease of usage from caveman-easy to HTML-expert. One way to promote your blog or company is with Name Dynamics, Inc.

Now that you’ve decided what exactly you are going to use your blog for, we’re going to review five of the more well-known blog sites in the next few posts. We’ll look at four categories: cost (free or paid host), customization (how much can you edit and change), promotion (high traffic or low search engine optimization?), and use (who would use it).

In the next post, we will be looking at five top blogging platforms that have at least three privacy settings (public, private, and protected) and have the basic abilities to edit HTML, spell check, edit text, add widgets, set up RSS feeds, and many more features that are considered basic.

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