Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Blogger or Word Press? Joan Edwards Highlights Some Differences

Congratulations to Connie Saunders for winning a critique from Joan. 

As I said in last week's post, Joan Y. Edwards, is the SCBWI-Carolinas regional "go to" person when members have questions about blogging and social media. In this post Joan explains how to get the most out of your blog as well as the difference between Blogger and Word Press. PLUS she is giving away another critique of 1000 words, a pitch and a query OR a blog consultation to one of you! 

How can bloggers get the most out of their blogs?

What can I do to ensure that my blog is noticed in a very crowded blogosphere?

Choose a theme or template that's attractive and reflects your personality and/or interests. Make sure you have a column for your posts, plus a sidebar for:

  * A picture of you
  * Most popular blog posts
  * Latest blog posts
  * Either at the top or in the sidebar you can put pages/tabs that remain the same all the time. On my blog, I list "Pub Subbers, Week 1, Week 2, Week 3, Week 4 and About Me" all the time in view. I also list them in the sidebar (column on right).

  * When you first begin your blog fix everything you want so it’s done one time.

       Carol's Thoughts: Think about who your audience is as you write your posts. What information are they looking for? What can you provide that other blogs don't? Joyce Hostetter taught me the importance of including pictures as much as possible. 
Joan's first chapter book is coming out next year!

How are WordPress and Blogger the same?
  *You can add pictures and videos on both.
  * You can choose sizes and colors of fonts. 

  *  Both have a place to put keywords, topics, and phrases which, are extremely important. (Blogger calls these "labels.") When people put a keyword, or topic into a search engine, if it’s in your blog, you'll show up as a possible source for information about that topic. For example, if you search for "publishers who accept unsolicited manuscripts" you'll find my blog post, "32 Publishers Who Accept Unsolicited Manuscripts." Your goal is to be at the top of the search engine list when someone searches for a topic.
   * Both have additional services that you can add to your blog. WordPress calls them “widgets;” Blogger calls them “gadgets.”

What are the differences between WordPress and Blogger?

       * WordPress calls their blog designs “themes.” Both Blogger and WordPress have portfolio or magazine style templates.

   * WordPress may put ads on your blog. On Blogger you may have to request GoogleAdSense to place ads on your blog. They check your ad ratings. If you have a high number of readership, GoogleAdSense will put ads on your blog and pay you when people click on them. You can find more information here.

    * On WordPress, you can fix the settings so that after you approve one comment from a person, all of their emails will be approved.

     * WordPress has a spam filter called Akismet to block emails from people who spam your blog. You can fix its settings so none of them are deleted until you dump them. Akismet does a great job of catching people who just want to put a comment with links to websites to purchase something.

     * Instead of a spam filter, Blogger uses Captcha, which lately has you click and say you’re not a robot. I don’t like the Captcha that makes you type the same letters and numbers as they have in their little box. Sometimes I can’t tell whether they are capital or lower case letters and may 3 or 4 tries. Sometimes I get frustrated and leave the blog without leaving a comment. Here’s a blog post about Captcha alternatives

Elegant themes compares WordPress and Blogger here

What are some other resources you'd like to share with my readers?

    * To Market To Market for Bloggers, Writers, and Illustrators is a public Facebook group for self-promotion. Members congratulate, encourage, and inspire each other share each other’s links. Share a link about your books, blog posts, and events (webinar, book launches, book signings, guest appearances, parties). Join on the group page https://www.facebook.com/groups/tomarkettomarket/

   * Pub Subbers Yahoo Group encourages members to submit a manuscript often with automated reminders of the necessary steps to get ready to submit: Week 1, Week 2, Week 3, and Week 4. To join, email joanyedwards1@gmail.com.
Please leave me a comment by December 30th and I will enter your name to win your choice of a 1000 word critique (plus evaluation of your pitch and query) or a critique of your blog. If you are new to my blog, please leave your email address also.

Joan’s Elder Care Guide Release 2016 4RV Publishing, empowers you, the caregiver to meet your physical, mental, emotional, spiritual, and social needs and those of your elder to promote healing, well-being, and survival. Based on the author’s research and fourteen year’s experience caring for her mother, it provides resources to find the right place for your elder to live, explains ways to improve communication to find solutions, and gives organization ideas for medical, financial, insurance, and legal documents. It offers ways for a caregiver to get time away from caregiving."

Joan Y. Edwards is author/illustrator of picture book, Flip Flap Floodle. Her Never Give Up blog has over 300,000 views and over 330 subscribers. You can find her on Facebook or Twitter @joanyedwards and @tomarketsuccess.

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