Which social buttons do you want on the blog?

Technology Bloggers is a community blog, therefore it is only right that the community are consulted on the decisions made.

My question to you is which social networks do you use, and which would you like to be able to connect with on the blog?

There are four main places you can get social on our Technology Bloggers at the moment: the first is the social icons in the header; the second is our social buttons on the sidebar; the third is the social buttons at the top of articles; and the forth is the social icons at the bottom of articles. Check out the image below to see them all.

Social Icons

Technology Bloggers social icons and buttons

My worry is, that we are not providing the buttons/icons you want. I just assume that everyone wants Facebook and Twitter, but do you use them?

In the image above you can see all of the buttons we provide you with. I never really thought we had that many, but putting them all together, there are a lot!

If I know what everyone uses, I can get rid of anyย unnecessary buttons, and potentially add some more useful ones in.

Which social buttons do you want? Let me know in the comments.

Here are some ideas:

  • Google: Google +1; Google+ Share; Google Buzz
  • Facebook: Facebook Like; Facebook Share
  • Twitter: Twitter Follow; Twitter Tweet; TweetMeme
  • Buffer
  • LinkedIn
  • Reddit
  • DZone
  • StumbleUpon
  • Topsy
  • Digg
  • Delicious
  • Yahoo Buzz
  • DesignBump
  • Serpd
  • TheWebBlend
  • BlogEngage
  • Pinterest
  • Flattr

How to be a successful blogger

This is the conclusion to a series of articles in which I shared with you my knowledge of how and why Technology Bloggers has been so successful, so fast. Learn more about this series by reading our Technology Bloggers success article.

So there we have it, the first Technology Bloggers series has been brought to a close.

For the last six weeks, every Monday I have released an article as part of a series, explaining how and why Technology Bloggers has become such a successful blog in such a short space of time. This is the last article in that series.

So what have we learned over the series?Learning is a crucual part of bloggingFirst off we learned the importance of a reputation in blogging. If you have a positive one already, great, if you don’t have one, you need to start to build one to become known on the blogosphere, and to run a successful blog. A reputation can give you authority and respect in your niche.

Second we learned how promotion is a key factor in blogging, and how you need good promotion from the start to have sustainable success. Utilise social media and your online connections. Also, make sure you comment on friends blogs and if you have a blog or website already, plug your new site there too!

Then we learned about how respect is a key part of blogging. To conclude an entire article in just one sentence: basically, if you respect your readers, they will respect you, hence why we are a dofollow technology blog ๐Ÿ™‚

The fourth in the series taught us why competition in blogging is important. Competition in blogging helps you to gain readers, especially commenting readers. Competitions contests themselves can also attract many people to your blog, from others on the net.

In the penultimate article in the series (excluding this article), we were shown why it is very important to give your readers lots of ways to subscribe to your blog. Email Subscriptions, Facebook and Twitter are what we use, although no-doubt that list will change in the future ๐Ÿ™‚

The final article in the series taught us to follow the experts in blogging to succeed. You can either learn what works and what doesn’t work for yourself, – the hard way – or you can look at the experts, and see what works for them. Learning form your own experience is good, learning from others is more productive and wise.


The end of this series has got me buzzing to write another, but what about? Is there anything technology, blogging or science or related that you would like me to either teach you or research for you?

Any suggestions? Throw them at me below ๐Ÿ™‚

Thanks for following the series and all also thanks for all the comments along the way. I hope you have learned something useful, which you can hopefully apply to yourself and your site ๐Ÿ™‚

Help your readers follow your blog

This is the fifth in a series of articles in which I hope to share with you my knowledge of how and why Technology Bloggers has been so successful, so fast. Learn more about this series by reading our Technology Bloggers success article.

As many of you know I used to run a tech blog of my own – entitled Christopher Roberts Technology Blog. Now on that blog I made a key error that many bloggers still make today. I didn’t make it easy for people to ‘subscribe’ to my content.

If you have a great blog, but no really easy ways for people to subscribe, the chases are that you won’t be able to retain visitors for very long. If you have a blog with good, (not great, but good) content, but you give readers loads of ways and incentives to subscribe, then you are much more likely to get loyal readers.

So if you have good content you could have more visitors than someone with great content, simply because you make it easy for people to keep up to date with your content.

With Technology Bloggers I hope I have created a blog with great content from a load of fantastic authors, as well as multiple ways to receive that content, making it really easy to subscribe.

So how can you ‘help’ your readers to follow your blog? Everyone is different, so I find there is no ‘one way fits all’, but there are a few ways that I think cover them all.

FeedBurner

If you use FeedBurner, FeedBlitz or some other feed subscriber, you can instantly give readers tens of ways to follow your content. Check out our feed or look at the image below to see just how many ways FeedBurner lets users subscribe to your feed.

Ways to subscribe using FeedBurner

Ways in which you can subscribe to Technology Bloggers via our (FeedBurner) RSS feed

Furthermore, if you use FeedBurner, you can get your feed to link into your Twitter account. This means that every new article you publish can appear in your twitter stream just seconds after publication. This means that all those people who prefer to receive updates via social media, can do so via Twitter.

Another great feature about FeedBurner is that it lets you give readers the option to subscribe via email. On the sidebar of every page of our blog you can input your email and get updates by email. Interested in trying it out?

You can use Facebook too

Facebook also gives you the option to import a feed as notes which can appear as a status update. Import your RSS feed to Facebook page and you create yet another way for people to follow your blog and read your content. All you need to is ‘like’ Technology Bloggers and you can get our feed! The one thing I would say about Facebook is that its updates aren’t nearly as frequent as Twitters are!

Click ‘Like’ below to see what I mean.

So now you know that you need to make it easy for people to follow your blog, do you have any amendments to make to your feed or social profiles?

Useful reference: How to add an email subscription form to your blog.

How to add an email subscription form to your blog

Earlier in the week, Wayne John from Southern California Web Development commented on how it would be great if you could subscribe via email to Technology Bloggers. This way you could read the latest and greatest content as an email, and then just visit the stuff that interests you to comment etc.

After a little puzzling I managed to enable FeedBurner’s email setting and add a subscribe widget to the sidebar.

Google FeedBurner LogoTo subscribe via email like many already have, please enter your email in the box on the sidebar, or even in the box below ๐Ÿ™‚

Enter your email address to get free updates about new articles!

As this blog talks about WordPress, RSS feeds and stuff like that, I thought I might as well help other bloggers set up a similar system ๐Ÿ™‚

What do I need for people to be able to subscribe via email?

Well first of all you need a feed. WordPress handles this nicely so that shouldn’t be too difficult! Second you need a feed manager. I use FeedBurner. It’s simple and easy to use. The problem with it at the moment is that it is really slow at updating, meaning that when I post an article at 2 in the afternoon, only 8 o’clock next morning does the feed update – for example. This isn’t a major issue for email subscription at the moment though.

How do I enable FeedBurner email subscriptions?

Click on the profile of the blog you want to enable emails for, then go to the ‘Publicize‘ tab. From here look down the sidebar and find ‘Email Subscriptions‘ – click that. You should then get a page looking a bit like the one in this picture.

Enable/Activate FeedBurner Email SubscriptionsThen click Activate!

You will then be taken to a page called ‘Subscription Management‘. Here is where you get your code! Now you can ether get the box code or get the code which links to the subscription page. I chose to have a box, but you take your pick. Add the code to your site/blog and hey presto! Test it out yourself if you like, but the code should work and your readers should now be able to subscribe to your blog via email.

Can I customise the FeedBurner code?

Yes – to a degree. I am not 100% sure what Google’s policy is on modifying the code, but I imagine they are okay with it. My default code would make Technology Bloggers ‘subscribe box’ look like this

Enter your email address: 

Delivered by FeedBurner

but my modifications make a much smother (I think so anyway) this

Enter your email address to get free updates about new articles!

Happy subscribing and happy creating readers and bloggers ๐Ÿ™‚