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Got a special request? TypePad One Services can help you too!

September 29, 2009

Most of the advertising and promotion for TypePad One Services, including here at Everything TypePad, has been on the Power Launch and Tune-Up Services. These are our most popular offerings, week in and week out, and are the best choice if you would like someone to review your blog and let you know how to make it better.

Sometimes, however, you may need help with something specific and your request goes beyond the scope of standard technical support. TypePad One Services can help you here too!

Some of the custom services we have provided in the past include:

  • Creation of banner image and custom design theme to match
  • Migration of blog and design to TypePad from another service
  • Extensive coding work for Advanced Templates
  • Match blog design to existing design of company or organization website

If you have a special request along these lines - or for something else not listed here - please contact us and we will evaluate your request and provide you with an estimate and quote.

And stay tuned for more information about our design services in the coming weeks and months.

Guest Stars: Business Blogging Pros & how to make a landing page in TypePad

September 28, 2009

Guest Star David Barnhart of Business Blogging Pros wrote up a great post for how to make a landing age in TypePad. You can make a special page for a book, (like Dave's Guide to the New TypePad!) a whitepaper, or anything else you want to focus on. Take it away, Dave:

How To Build A Landing Page in TypePad

Not long ago, my friend Andy Wibbels hosted a webinar describing how to use a TypePad blog as an eCommerce website.  You can view Andy's webinar here. An additional feature that I get asked about frequently is a landing page. 

Most of us eventually need a landing page.  We produce a book or white paper and we want to direct people to a page focused on our offering while providing them with as few other distractions as possible.

I'm going to describe three ways to accomplish this:

Method 1, The Simplest: Create an Ordinary Static Page on Your Blog

NewPost The simplest method is to create an ordinary static page on your blog. While it is the simplest, your landing page will display your blog's banner, nav bar, and sidebar(s). You may consider these elements too distracting.

Assuming you are on the New TypePad, click the down-arrow in the Compose button and select Page.  Create your landing page, making it appear exactly as you wish.

Continue reading "Guest Stars: Business Blogging Pros & how to make a landing page in TypePad" »

Social Media Optimization for TypePad

September 24, 2009

When we built the All New TypePad, one area we focused was helping you build an audience. When it comes to finding an audience for your blog, the best places are:
  1. People you know
  2. People who are interested in what you are saying.

We’ve built the new TypePad to help you reach both of these groups. As the saying goes, the best place to fish is where the fish are.

Hey friends, look over here!


Social-media-reach-small

Social networks like Facebook, Friendster, and Twitter have helped millions of people get online. And your social network is a great place to connect your blog with a new audience.

As a blogger, you are a leader in the online community, sharing your thoughts, ideas, and creations. Many of you also have friend and follow networks on Twitter and Facebook. With the TypePad integration with Facebook, Twitter and Friendfeed, you can now update your readers as soon as you post, encouraging your friends and followers to visit your blog. 

If you have 100 followers on Twitter and 100 friends on Facebook, you can instantly reach a potential audience of 200 visitors to your blog.

We’ve noticed a significant increase in visitors to TypePad blogs that have integrated Twitter and Facebook cross-posting, so give it a try and see what happens.


Short, Sweet, and Full of Insight
We have also partnered with bit.ly. Bit.ly automatically shortens your URLs to a Twitter friendly length. We automatically shorten your URL when you use the sharing feature on TypePad.

Bitly-link-typepad

Our integration also provides you with one-click access to real time stats about how many people are visiting your site from the posts you have shared to Twitter and Facebook. The benefit to you: a short, shareable URL that can provide extra insight about your visitors.

Social Media Opti…What?

You’ll notice the Bit.ly stats are included right on your blog Overview under “Social Media Optimization.” Social media optimization is what we refer to as all of the social web services that help you reach and connect with your audience: social networks (Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn), social bookmarks (Digg, Delicio.us, Reddit), social search (Technorati), and social publishing like TypePad.

The concept of social media optimization (SMO) was created and evangelized by author, PR, media superstar, and TypePad member Rohit Bhargava way back in 2006 in his post, 5 Rules of Social Media.

Inspired by Rohit’s ideas and the evolution of the social web, we built in the most valuable SMO tools in TypePad. Now you can focus on the other half of social media -- commenting on blogs, sharing pictures, discussing new ideas, blogging, and building relationships with people who share your passion.

Now, more than ever, your blog is the hub of your social media activity and an anchor for your online reputation.

Follow Your Favorites, Traffic Follows


Typepad-team-follow

TypePad Follow feature is not another social network; it is a new way to find and follow the best bloggers and conversations on the web. We call it an In-The-Know network, the place where you can follow your passion -- whether it is sports, food, business, politics, fiction, family, religion, animals or anything else -- and connects you with people that share your passion.

The first step for you to take advantage of this network is the TypePad Profile module, launched last week, so your blog readers and TypePad members can find and follow you. Anyone who follows you will automatically be notified when you update your blog, encouraging new visitors to stop by and see your post.

But there is another benefit, a social media optimization concept that extends beyond the circle of friends that follow you. When a reader who is following you comments on your blog, her comment will now extend out to her TypePad network, driving additional readers to your blog. By allowing other people – your TypePad readers – to spread the word about your blog, you are taking advantage of your TypePad network and optimizing your site for the social web.

Now it’s your turn: you can turn your readers into members of your blog by encouraging to Follow your TypePad profile.

Putting it all together
Stay tuned over the next few days as we discuss how you can get the most out of your social media optimization (SMO).  And don’t worry, we haven’t forgotten about search engine optimization (SEO). We’ll also give you some SEO tips for the new Typepad.

Questions? Opinions? Social media optimization suggestions for other TypePad bloggers? Let me know in the comments below.

bit.ly Integrated in TypePad

September 24, 2009

Last week we added a cool new feature to TypePad: real-time bit.ly stats.

Now, when you share you new posts on Twitter, Facebook and FriendFeed, TypePad automatically shortens your post URLs using the bit.ly service. For example, a blog title like http://everything.typepad.com/blog/2009/09/real-time-web-pushing-your-blogs.html can be shortened to http://bit.ly/12cbYK so it can be easily shared on Twitter.

And now you can get statistics on how often those links are clicked directly from your TypePad blog overview.

To see how this feature works, sign in to the All New TypePad and check the stats for your blog. Below the traffic graph you’ll see a new link:

Bitly-link-typepad


Click the link and you’ll see a page of real-time clickthrough stats on posts that you’ve shared with your friends on Twitter, Facebook and FriendFeed. Click on the bit.ly URL for each of the entries for more detailed stats directly from bit.ly.

Bitly-stats-example


NOTE: If you haven't shared any posts on Twitter, Facebook or FriendFeed, then you won't see any bit.ly stats. If you're not sharing your posts with your friends, it's really easy to set up.  Check out the TypePad Knowledge Base for detailed instructions.

We need your feedback to make this feature better! Let us know your thoughts in the comments.

Ask Miz Ginevra - dealing with trolls

September 22, 2009

Troll

Trolls. Oof.

Tolls online are people who seem to wake up in the morning for the sole purpose of  tearing your blog to shreds. We've got 'em.  If you've got 'em, welcome! It's a sign of success - as long as there's someone there professing to hate everything you say, you know you're doing it well.

No one likes being told they're wrong, especially on our blogs, which we consider our place, our house. The internet makes it easy for anyone happening along your spot to have a safe, comfy, judge-y place to let you know they just don't like what you say, especially in your comments. How do you deal with someone who seems to be out for destruction?

Ignoring the troll isn't quite right - the guidance we often hear is "don't feed the troll". What does that mean?

Don't feed the troll: don't let someone get your goat. You can respond, but don't let it be from a place of frustration. If someone's deliberately out to make you frustrated, don't give in. Take a walk. Have someone else read your response. Get some perspective: it's only the internet after all.

Don't overreact: are you reading more than you need to into something someone wrote about you? Again, ask a friend or colleague for advice - sometimes, emotion can color your reaction. I told someone the other day that "I wish there was a sarcasm font for the internet." Is there a possibility that it's not them, it's you?

Don't underreact: if someone is threatening the peace of your online community, don't feel DRAMATIC by asking them to cut it out. A well-timed, personal email can help mend fences with a community, and doesn't embarrass anyone in public. Asking some people to tone down their conversation works, but the best way to deal with someone who's upset? Find out what they're really trying to say. A symptom of troll-like behavior can be an overblown public comment, but the real cause is often that someone simply doesn't feel listened to.

Don't take it personally: some people are just out to be mean/vindictive/bitter. These are your real trolls.You'll know them when you see them: like a bad penny, they always turn up.

Use TypePad's profiles and moderation features: Of course, if things come to extremes, you can use TypePad's IP banning, commenter banning, or moderation to help your blog achieve smooth sailing. We accept all comments and reply here on Everything TypePad, but there's certain topics and entire blogs that require constant vigilance. That's why we're happy to have sophisticated moderation tools here with TypePad. Our profiles and following features help you keep even closer watch on your commenting community - if someone isn't signing in with TypePad, Twitter, or Facebook, or they're keeping anonymous in other online forums, you can bet you're not the only victim.

Have you had experiences with trolls challenging communicators on your blog? Let us know in the comments!

Movin’ On Up: TypePad News and Release Notes

September 18, 2009

This is a big milestone week for TypePad: we have a huge new group of people who are on the All New TypePad. Over the next couple weeks, we’ll be moving people over in groups, and collecting your feedback. If you’re ready to try it now, we encourage you to click the big yellow button and check it out.

LoveIt - Kisha

We’ve had a few questions, so we wanted to address them here.

First, the new TypePad has been out of beta for months, and we’ve been through months of real-world testing. All of the new enhancements mentioned below are for the new TypePad. If you want the new features on a great new application, it’s time to move on up.

Second, we have had a lot of people asking if they can move to the new version. We’ve made it easier to move with the big yellow button.

Big-yellow-button-typepad

And finally, yes, the old application will be retired soon. In order to continue moving forward, we need to focus our energy on one application, one support system, knowledge base article, etc. We’ve already begun moving full steam ahead on cool updates to the new version, and we’re excited about what we have in store. (Want a sneak peek? Check out this week’s beta-only features.)

We’ve heard from some of the early adopters of the new TypePad that the new design took a little bit of getting used to, but after a day or two, the feedback has been overwhelmingly positive. 

LoveIt+Dashboard

We want everyone to have as much time as possible to kick the tires, too. The sooner you move, the longer you’ll have to get comfortable, and to see all the awesome new features we’ve got that you asked for. You’ll still be able to switch back to the old version for a while, but in a few weeks, everyone will be moved over.

Speaking of new features, how about some? While the big stuff is still in beta, we did release some new improvements, thanks to your suggestions and feedback.

Reply to comments via email
Now you have the choice to either reply to your comments and have your reply post as a followup straight to your blog, or to reply to commenters directly via email. We’re still improving how this experience works, but it’s a feature a ton of people asked for, so we’re excited about how it’s shaping up.

Improved comment experience

Comment-form-icons-typepad

Based on some impressive performance on the beta blogs, we have added a few popular social web icons -- TypePad, Facebook, and Twitter -- on the comment forms. We tested this design in beta for a few weeks and saw a dramatic increase in the commenting activity. By encouraging people to sign in and become a “real” person, we have seen a significant increase in comments.

Easier Google Analytics set up
One way to improve your understanding of your readers is by adding sophisticated web analytics services. We’ve integrated Google Analytics, one of the most popular free services. Just tell us your Google Analytics code, and we’ll update all the pages and posts on your blog.

Not fancy, but cool
Did you know we find customer questions in all sorts of places? Twitter, blog posts, Facebook, coffee shops, and family get togethers – everyone’s got questions! We’ve added a few features to our customer support system to help us handle these questions faster and more effectively. We focused on things like improved workflow for our TypePad One team, as well as better tracking when we find issues and questions. The goal: getting your answers faster so you can spend spending more time doing what you love doing.

Thank you
Thanks, as always, for your feedback to help make TypePad the better. In addition to these features, we fixed over 25 customer-specific bugs.

Easy, instant invoicing from your TypePad blog, with FreshBooks

September 17, 2009

More and more small businesses are using their TypePad blogs as their sole web presence. That makes perfect sense now that you can combine a static Page with a horizontal navigation bar to achieve a more "website" look and feel. A visitor to your site cannot tell the difference.

While we want to provide as many tools as we can to make your business a success, we can't build them all ourselves. What we can do is make using other tools, in conjunction with your TypePad blog, easier  via widget integration

When was the last time you checked out the widget gallery? We have tons of great 3rd party functionality ready to go with a few clicks. Make sure you visit the new "Small Business" category.

One great example is FreshBooks, the online invoicing and billing service. If you haven't heard about these guys, we can highly recommend them. We use FreshBooks to help us invoice our Blog Tune Up customers and it works a treat, as you can see in the screen shot below

Freshbooks widget on TypePad services page .

Today we announced an integration with FreshBooks that will allow you to capture customer information from your blog that is entered directly into your FreshBooks account as a new client. Gathering leads on your blog is a great way to engage your visitors and manage that relationship through to a sale. We have found this widget has saved us a great deal of time and effort, and has actually helped us close sales more effectively.

The integration has been made possible by FormSpring, who provide forms that can link to your FreshBooks account as well as other useful services like SalesForce, Mail Chimp, Campaign Monitor and many more.

To learn more about this exciting integration visit the TypePad widget gallery.

Quick CSS Tip: Matching the Archives and Categories titles to the Sidebar Titles styles

September 15, 2009

Sidebar header comparison Why are the Archives and Categories headings in the sidebar displaying differently than other modules?
- Asked by Dan of Dan's Bullets.

The titles in the Archives and Categories modules are links to the archives index page for your blog. Links in the sidebar use the sidebar link styles for the blog's theme. If the link styles are different from the sidebar title styles, the Archives and Categories headings will display differently than other headings in the sidebar.

If you are at or above the Pro level, you can use Custom CSS to set all headings in the sidebar to display the same regardless of the link styles. At Design > Custom CSS, you can add the code:

.module-header a:link, a:hover, a:visited, a:active { text-decoration: none; }

This will remove the underline or bold style applied to links. If the links are set to use a different color, you can also add the color code:

.module-header a:link, a:hover, a:visited, a:active { text-decoration: none; color: #003366; }

Not sure of the color code? You can get the code at Design > Theme > Sidebar > Sidebar Title and copy the color code. Replace #003366 with the exact color code for the Sidebar Title.

Best of the Bloggers: Life in a Venti Cup

September 14, 2009

Glamour gal about town Franki of Life in A Venti Cup talks about her favorite blogs, her reasons she loves TypePad, and who was REALLY the first fan of Six Apart in her family.

VentiHow long have you been blogging with TypePad?
My husband likes to brag that he was one of the original SixApart fans and customers, but it took me a while to make the switch since I'd built up a good deal of content and traffic on my original blogging platform. I finally made the switch about two years ago and have never looked back.

What led you to choose TypePad as a blogging platform?

Many reasons! First, my traffic was growing at a pace where we knew it was time to migrate to a more sophisticated system. Additionally, I needed a more elegant way to manage comments and interact with readers. TypePad made it possible to connect with people in ways that my old system couldn't by providing me with their email address in addition to their blog URL. Another driver was TP's use of categories. At the time, my other blog wouldn't allow me to categorize my posts. This was a necessity for me, since my topics range from stilettos to Spanish tapas. Looking back it seems like such a basic feature, but when you don't have that capability it feels like a luxury. And last but not least, traffic. I don't have any metric or stats to back it up (you'd have to ask my husband who is way more focused on data and details), but making the switch boosted my traffic tremendously. Suddenly my posts were coming up in Google searches and new readers were coming my way daily.

In many ways that's when Life in a Venti Cup really took off. Those tiny improvements made it possible to really build and nurture those online relationships and ultimately to grow a single blog into a family of "venti" sites. It's been remarkable!

What’s your favorite comment/interaction from someone new you’ve had through your blog?
Too many to mention. It's worth mentioning, however, that most of the interaction doesn't take place on the blog. The blog ends up being a starting point for offline friendships. I've developed some close relationships with people around the world - all due to my blogs. We email, write letters, talk on the phone, send things to one another. But nothing compares to finally meeting in person. That's when the fun really begins!

Most recently a reader struck up an email conversation with me about a pair of Tory Burch high-heeled sandals. I'd grabbed two pair of these shoes on sale recently and she happened to wear the same size . Several emails later I was pulling together some things from my personal closet - including those sold out shoes - and sending them to her in South Africa! That's a long way for a girl to go to track down a shoe, but she did it! Best of all, we've now got this great connection and a great story to share. Little stories like this continue to reinforce how small our world is thanks to the marvels of technology.

Who are your top 5 favorite bloggers?
Oooh, this is a great question and a very difficult one to answer. Off the top of my head:

Joanna Goddard of Another Cup of Jo puts out consistently great content. She's warm, personable and seems like a close, fabulous girlfriend. Love her!
Ronda Carman of All the Best is another exceptional blogger. Stepping into her world is like entering an exclusive partly loaded with socialites and influentials. Here's a woman who consistently interviews bold faced names worthy of Page Six exposure. I'd love to see her list of contacts!
For my fix of remarkably pretty photographs I can always rely on This is Glamorous. The name of the blog says everything you need to know. If you are seeking glamour, be sure to visit her online world. And don't miss her more fashion focused Glamorous Little Side Project.
Another favorite is Paloma's wonderful blog La Dolce Vita. She does indeed show us everything we need for a sweet life. With Paloma you read as much for her warmth as you do for her wonderful imagery. She's another one of those blogger friends that you know you could spend the day shopping and lunching with and never skip a beat.
And because I love travel, Jen Laceda's Folie à Deux is a must. Globetrotter, fashionista and all around wonderful person to connect with. I just love Jen!
You've asked for only five, but I could go on at length. There are so many quality blogs out there deserving more exposure. I may need to expand this into a post! :)

Who would you recommend for your followers on your blog to start following?
Obviously, Aneta of Bobbin Talk is a popular choice for any fashionista to follow. She mixes it up with morsels of travel and dashes of street fashion. But a bit off the beaten path I've found Carrie of Boomacious. She offers a look at the more glamorous side of life, and I often find myself drooling over the photographs on her site. More recently I'm also following you, Ginevra! It's fun discovering new ways to reach out and meet new people. The "follow" feature is new, but hold a lot of promise in my opinion. I'm looking forward to having more time to play with it!

Making Your TypePad Blog "Real Time"

September 14, 2009

Publishing your TypePad blog in "Real Time"

Three years ago, we introduced the Six Apart update stream, the fastest way to deliver your blog posts directly to search engines and improve your traffic. Today, we are releasing our new TypePad PubSubHubbub hub which automatically pushes your blog updates in "real time".

  • Get instant updates in Google Reader, FriendFeed, SuperFeedr and LiveDoor
  • It's automatic. No plugins or changes are required for TypePad bloggers
  • It's free for all TypePad bloggers

Give it a try today.  We think you -- and your readers -- will be impressed with instant updates.

NOTE: If you are using Advance Templates in TypePad, please add the following line to your atom.xml:

<link rel="hub" href="http://hubbub.api.typepad.com/" />

Developers: Learn more about PubSubHubbub

The new TypePad PubSubHubbub hub builds on the exciting work that Brad Fitzpatrick (a Six Apart alum) and Brett Slatkin’s team at Google have done with the implementation of PubSubHubbub

PubSubHubbub is a "simple, open, server-to-server web-hook-based pubsub (publish/subscribe) protocol as an extension to Atom and RSS". The PubSubHubbub protocol is decentralized and free. No single company controls it and anybody can run a hub, ping (publish) or subscribe using open hubs. If you are interested in learning more about PubSubHubbub we strongly recommend that you check out their Google Code page, read through the specifications posted on the wiki, join the discussion group and contribute your hub code to the community.

We are looking forward to supporting and growing our TypePad Developer community, so check back soon for more articles, code and documentation resources.

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