If you’re blogging for promotional reasons (and if you’re an author or wanna-be, that should be your #1 focus), there are a few settings and other things that will make this easier for you.
Domain name: Choose your domain name carefully because you cannot change it later. Most people will come to your blog through a link. If they like what they see, they will bookmark it and return that way or via RSS feed. But for those few who will be typing in your URL (like a publisher or agent), please pick something that is easy to remember and at least slightly professional—like your name. Or if your blog focuses on a theme, something that reflects that. i-am-a-disney-princess.blogspot.com is not a good idea.
Blog Title: This may or may not be different from your domain name. It’s the same here on my blog. The title is what appears in the header of your blog. You can be much more creative with your title than with your domain name. Still, you want to present a professional image.
Description: This is where you explain what your blog is or why you are doing it. For example: Dedicated to helping LDS authors successfully navigate the LDS publishing world.
Profile: Your profile shares with the world some of the details of who you are. A lot of people are hesitant about including these details and you do need to be careful. But anything that you would include in the author bio of your book would be just as safe here.
I suggest posting your photo because people like to see who they’re “talking” to. It makes you seem friendlier and more approachable—both attributes you want to cultivate as an author. If you really don’t want your photo there, use the cover of your book or an attractive icon or a piece of clip art (like mine).
Take advantage of the “Extended Info” to invite readers most likely to relate to your site. List areas of interest that correlate with the focus of your books. When they visit other blogs, readers will click on the key words that correspond with their personal interests and your blog will show up on the list.
One thought on “Blogging 101-Settings, Part 1”
A couple additional thing about domain names:
It’s dot-com or nothing. I don’t know why, but a huge number of people don’t google your name (or company)–they just type in “yourname.com”. While it might be easier to find a .biz or .net domain, you’re making it harder to find your self.
Also, and MOST important, make your domain easy (and intuitive) to spell. Don’t use hyphens (like I-write-books.com) and don’t use any numbers in place of words (iwritebooks4you.com). The reason for this, of course, is that if you’re ever being interviewed on the radio, or speaking at a conference, or just chatting at a party, you won’t have to explain how to spell your web address. If it’s simple then people will remember. If it’s complicated, they won’t.
(Likewise, if you’re using something like Blogger, it’s handy to buy and reroute a simpler domain name so you can simply say “iwritebooks.com” rather than “iwritebooks.blogspot.com”.)
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