What are blogs?

November 29, 2007

business week blogs and business

I guess the majority of people who read Terinea Weblog, already know what blogs are? Although, I realised the other day I’ve never actually explained in my own words what blogs are.

Blogs are not a new technology

I find most people struggle to understand the concept of blogging because they are looking for a piece of new technology to be involved. Usually when explaining something new in computing it will involve a new piece of hardware or software. Blogs on the other hand, are simply a collection of web pages which are commonly referred as blog posts. The new posts appear in date order with the latest post appearing at the top of the page. You can think of them as a online journal or web log, hence the name weblog which has been shortened to blog. Posts can contain anything from text, pictures, quoted text from other website’s, links to other blogs, music, charts, tables or embedded video.

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The Community

So far you might be thinking so what, they sound like a regular website? Well blogs (good ones!) are all about the community of readers that read and leave comments. For example if you disagree or wish to add something to this particular post, you can simply scroll down the page and leave a comment. As one of the authors of the blog I should acknowledge your comment and maybe even update the post if the comment adds value.

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Tell me when you update

Another big different with blogs over regular website’s is something called Really Simple Syndicate Feed or RSS Feed. You might of seen the RSS Feed logo on various web sites or within your web browser. Instead of visiting a blog to check for updates, a RSS Feed will inform you when the blog has been updated. In fact you don’t actually need to visit the blog at all, using something called a RSS Reader will pull new posts down for you.

Still confused? Watch this excellent video from Common Craft.

Business and Blogging

To find out why your business might want a blog, take a look at…

  • Blogs and Wikis: Growing influences and markets of the Internet
  • Benefits and Weakness for Business Blogs

Some external links

If you’re thinking about starting one for your business, check out our

Skip to the end

So in summary…

  • Blogs are a web Journal or Web log
  • Readers can subscribe to the blog using the RSS feed
  • Latest posts appear at the top
  • Old posts appear at the bottom
  • Posts can be sorted by categories and date
  • A two way medium
  • Readers can leave comments
  • Can be about anything from knitting to the stock exchange
  • Blogs should be fun and informal
  • Writing a blog is referred as blogging
  • Can be used for personal or business
  • Reading other blogs and leaving comments is as equally important to running a blog
  • Should be updated more regularly than a website
  • Use a desktop blog writer to make the whole process an easier one
Author: Support @ 8:40 am
Tags: ,




Our newest clients in the local rag

October 30, 2007

Its nice when our clients get some offline media coverage.

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William Coles has just launched his first novel, The Well Tempered Clavier. Terinea overhauled Bills blog site.

“I remember that first weekend in Edinburgh, going up the Crags and watching the sun going down over the Castle – and it just blew me away.” Having worked his way through the ranks from being a staff reporter on The Sun to New York correspondent – at the time of the Monica Lewinsky scandal – William became a political correspondent and a commentator on the royals. But throughout it all, he harboured an ambition to write books so, when he moved to Edinburgh, he resolved to pursue that line.
http://edinburghnews.scotsman.com/features.cfm?id=1715832007

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The Illicit Still is our first client in Edinburgh since House of Fraser bought Jenners Department Store, to install one of our EPoS solution, commonly referred as touch screen till!

AT THE BAR

PROBABLY the first and possibly the only Edinburgh bar to utilise Facebook, The Illicit Still chronicled its recent overhaul extensively on the social networking site, as well as recruiting most of its staff through its pages.

And what an overhaul. The Brougham Place bar has been completely renovated, resembling its former incarnation in shape and size only.

The Illicit Still has two real ales on tap, with a pint of either Caley 80 Shillings or Deuchars IPA costing a modest £2.50. Their present promotion means you can down a pint of Foster’s Super Chilled for £2.20. A standard glass of wine comes in at £2.65, with a bottle at only £8.

Get in early if you fancy a shot on their Nintendo Wii, which is hooked up to the giant plasma screen.
• The Illicit Still, Brougham Place, Monday-Saturday, 11am-1am, Sunday 12.30pm-1am, 0131-228 2633

http://living.scotsman.com/food.cfm?id=1712522007

Author: Support @ 9:00 am




The Well-Tempered Client

October 25, 2007

William Coles the well tempered clavier

Its nice when your client blogs about you, even if they are making fun of your mistakes!

William Coles is a experienced journalist who has written for a number of national newspapers such as The Scotsman, The Mail, The Express & Wall Street Journal, here in the UK and New York. A couple of months ago his friend Tim, a coffee morning regular suggested that he should pop along to the coffee morning and see if he could pickup anything that would help to promote his new novel, The Well Tempered Clavier. Two months later William, is a regular blogger, facebooker and I believe uploading his pictures to flickr.

My involvement? Well about a month ago William asked if I could jazz up his existing blog site. So after reading a little bit about the book I started my research. Now for some reason I thought the leading lady was a Indian, when infact she was called India!

“And I’ve got a picture of a really gorgeous Asian girl!” trilled Jamie. “Lovely almond-skin. Just gorgeous. She’ll be perfect!”

“Ahh,” I said, temporizing (William) a little. “Interesting. Tell me, Jamie, why do we want a picture of a gorgeous Asian girl on this web site?”

“Well I thought this guy, the hero of the book, was having a fling with an Indian bird …”

“What?” I said. “What! Have you gone totally insane? She is not some Indian bird, no! Her name happens to be INDIA.”

http://clavierbook.blogspot.com/2007/10/almond-skinned-beauties.html

That’s Journalists for you, I wouldn’t believe a word you read!

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Author: Support @ 8:00 am
Category: Clients




How many Google Readers do you have?

October 18, 2007

Google Reader number of subscriptions to your blog

Google has recently updated Google Reader to allow you to check the number of readers for each of your RSS subscriptions. Which can be handy feature when faced with cutting back on the number RSS subscriptions you have time to read.

You can also check the popularity of your own blog. This is something I do on monthly basis as a way of measuring our blog development.

Now depending on the way you read it (picture above), I either have 11, 17, 22, 28 or 39 readers who subscribe to the blog using Google Reader. According to Feedburner its 28, but that won’t take into account those who are subscribed using the raw feed not produced by Feedburner. While on the subject, make sure your blog doesn’t make that mistake by seeing my post on WordPress and Feedburner.

Finding the number of readers that use Google Reader?

Okay lets cut to the chase, how do I check the popularity of my blog with Google Reader.

  1. At the moment this is a closed system, so head over to Google Reader if you don’t already have a free account.
  2. google reader - add subscription
    Once logged in, simple click on Add Subscription
  3. search for blog with Google Reader
    Type the name of the blog you wish find out the numbers for and click Add.
  4. Digital Agency number of blog readers
    Here we have searched for our good friend Mike from Digital Agency. I would say Mike has a nice health 76 readers who read his blog using Google Reader.

Social Google and Facebook

Now what would happen if Google decided to use this metric to determine website rankings? In one easy swoop Google has become a social search engine. Now you can understand why Google doesn’t appear interested in buying Facebook, but would rather compete with it. Google recently purchased Jaiku (Twitter type of service) and Zingku (Facebook for mobiles) maybe Google is up to something with its social networking site, Orkut?

Author: Support @ 8:00 am
Category: Blogging




How to move your WordPress blog and keep the traffic flowing

October 7, 2007

a lady moving house

I finally got around to moving the blog to a different location on our website. This has been something I have been meaning to do for a while now, but was put off at the thought of loosing my web traffic. But fear not, using Redirection plugin you can keep the traffic flowing.

I’m not moving my blog

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Before you skip over this post, because you’re not moving your blog, think again. The Redirection plugin has a very nice feature that allows you to redirect 404 pages, which is just a technical name for missing pages caused by broken links. The plugin logs any occurrences of 404 pages along the URL address of the page requested. To stop this happening again, you simple provide the 404 record with alternative location.

For example I noticed that the following page had been requested a number times.

Getting the whole picture, WordPress and Feedburner

Up until this morning this would of resulted in 404 page being displayed. Now it redirects to the correct page.

I am moving my blog

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For a while now I’ve been wanting to move the blog from http://www.terinea.co.uk/blog (we use to have two blogs, other one was called TerineaTimes) to http://www.terinea.co.uk/blog for a number of reasons. I also wanted to change the permlink setup too. But before you install the plugin, make sure you have a complete copy of your blog in the new location. Once you’re happy, download Redirection plugin, install and watch the video on how to use the plugin.

Here is what I implemented:-

I wanted any of my original posts, for example…

/blogs/terineatectips/2007/10/23/this-is-a-blog-post.php

to redirect to

/blog/this-is-a-blog-post.php

Rather that add 200 redirects, I used the following syntax

/blog/(.*)/(.*)/(.*)/(.*)/

to redirect to

/blog/$4/

$4 value is in reference to the “(.*)” variable from the original URL address. If I wanted to use the other variables it would look something like this…

/blog/$1/$2/$3/$4/

$1 = Year $2 = Month $3 = date $4 = Post name

I hope that’s clear as mud?

301 and Duplicated Content

Any readers on David Airey’s fantastic blog will know, that Google doesn’t like duplicated content. So not only does the Redirection plugin redirect traffic to the new blog posts, but it also tells Google and other Search Engines that the page has permanently moved to a new location, using a 301 code. Hopefully after a while they will re-index these pages.

301 redirect is the most efficient and Search Engine Friendly method for webpage redirection. It’s not that hard to implement and it should preserve your search engine rankings for that particular page. If you have to change file names or move pages around, it’s the safest option. The code “301” is interpreted as “moved permanently”.

http://www.webconfs.com/how-to-redirect-a-webpage.php

Don’t forget the others

  • You must also remember to update your Feedburner feed and integrate it into your blog template.
  • Re-add your Google Analytics code into your WordPress template
  • Unfortunately one thing you can’t change is the URL of your Technorati account, so hence I’ve had to create a new blog, which is now sat at 3 rather than my pervious 176!
Author: Support @ 11:33 pm




28 Tips that will improve your business blog

August 21, 2007

business women laptop

Here are 28 quick tips for anyone who is thinking about starting a blog for their business.

  1. Never direct sell your products
  2. Feature your customers
  3. Give useful advice away for free, demonstrate your knowledge
  4. Keep it business like, but not boring
  5. Give credit where it is due
  6. Tell a story
  7. Plan your posts, make a note of topics covered
  8. Add value to material you quote or link to
  9. Blog news articles about your staff, area and clients
  10. Host it on a dedicated hosting, i.e. yourcompany.co.uk/blog
  11. Thinking about your audience you wish to attract, the game plan
  12. Break it up with images
  13. Keep it professional, don’t ruin it with adverts
  14. Keep it a two way affair, read other blogs and leave comments
  15. Match your blog with the company website style and formatting if possible
  16. Feature business events you attend
  17. Talk about problems your business has solved for your clients
  18. Grammar, yes I’m guilt of this one!
  19. Use attractive blog titles
  20. Space out your blog posts, blog regularly
  21. Stop emailing clients newsletters, blog it
  22. Measure and review your blog popularity
  23. Cross reference your posts with pervious posts
  24. Include key search phrases if SEO is a goal
  25. Get everyone in the company involved
  26. Think about other mediums such as Facebook and Flickr
  27. Socialise with bloggers offline, like I do at Edinburgh Coffee Morning
  28. Give it time!
Author: Support @ 8:00 am