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Developer update: Use the Twitter and Twitpic APIs on TypePad!

March 31, 2010

We’re excited to announce the launch of our Twitter and Twitpic compatible APIs. These new APIs make it easy for existing Twitter and Twitpic clients (such as mobile and desktop apps) to support TypePad. You can test the latest API endpoints with any app that allows you to set a custom API URL, such as Tweetie 2 from Atebits.

Features-mobile-all 
Documentation and Additional Resources:
Need the technical detail? Go to the TypePad Developer Resources and reference the available documentation. Are you a developer or interested in working with other TypePad developers? Join the TypePad Developer Network and be a part of the conversation.

Using Twitter to Boost TypePad Affiliate Commission

March 30, 2010

Twitter is a great way to get the word out about your blog and increase traffic. It can also be useful for boosting affiliate revenue if you are part of the TypePad affiliate program. Here are some tips and tricks to keep in mind on Twitter best practice.

Twitter

Marketing Best Practices

  • Calls to action: Include strong directions in your tweets to encourage people to click through.
  • Don’t Spam:  If you over do it, it will take away from your promotions.  Spamming will reduce the effectiveness of all your marketing, and make followers less likely to pay attention to your posts. Make sure to only tweet with new news or at least a new slant.
  • Limited Time Offers:  Many of our promotions are limited time offers. By highlighting expiration dates, you can encourage potential customers to sign up soon.
  • Tell People Why You Love TypePad: Don’t just tweet about why people should buy a blog, tweet about why you like TypePad blogs.  By telling personal experiences you have had with TypePad, readers will be able to relate to what makes TypePad so great!

Interacting with Followers

  • Include Initial Tweet in your response:  If you are responding to a comment about your tweet, make sure to include the initial tweet in your response.  This keeps the original idea in focus.
  • Direct Messaging: Do you have a lot of followers?  If so, try direct messaging them.  If you see one of them has a post related to launching a blog, message them and suggest they use TypePad.  Watch out for people tweeting about blogging and respond with offers.
  • Shorten message length:  Keep below 125 characters, so you can be retweeted.  Lowering the characters will allow room for spaces and usernames.

Timing

  • Retweet:  Tweets can get lost in the page.  If you tweeted about something on a Friday night, it is likely that it may get lost by Monday.  You can retweet an idea to make sure followers see your tweets.  Just make sure to reword your tweet, so it doesn't get too repetitive.
  • Time of Tweets:  Think about what time your followers are likely to be on Twitter. Optimize views by timing tweets to when you expect a lot of users to be online.  For example, if you are tweeting to followers who are likely to be checking while at work, it is probably not a good idea to post a lot of tweets on a Friday night.  Instead, try tweeting around 10 am PST so you can capture people getting to work on the west coast and coming back from lunch on the east coast.

URLS and Landing Pages

  • Landing Pages: Think about where you are landing visitors once they click through a URL.  Land visitors on a relevant page with content about TypePad.   There should be Commission Junction (CJ) banners or links that are easy for them to access.  Better yet, include a shortened CJ link in your tweet.
  • Shorten URLs:  Shortening a URL will allow you to utilize characters in your tweets.  People are also more likely to click on a URL when it is short and clean.  When URLs look long and messy, people may suspect them of containing viruses and are less likely to click on them.
  • URL Tracking:  Track data about URL clicks.  Bit.ly will shorten your URLs and track data about how many clicks you have had.  Bit.ly is great because it is also free and built into TypePad when you share your posts to Twitter Have a go on your next tweet.

Example Tweets: Here are some ideas!

  • Loving TypePad. It gives me complete control of design. Curious? I have a discount code [include bit.ly link to your site or the code itself]
Any other pearls of wisdom on Twitter? We'd love you to share them in the comments.

And the TypePad for Dummies winners are...

March 26, 2010

Tuesday we announced the TypePad for Dummies Giveaway Contest and ever since I have had a permanent smile on my face as the suggestions have rolled in. The TypePad Team have really enjoyed all the submissions on what you would write your For Dummies book about, and we were introduced to a ton of new bloggers we hadn't met before. So if you participated - thank you! This has been A LOT of fun.

While all the comments were excellent we noticed some trending themes that we thought were worth highlighting for your entertainment and perhaps (the publisher) Wiley's consideration ;)

Bizarrely, personal hygiene appears high on the list of things that our bloggers would like to help people resolve. Hygiene in the workplace issues? Bruce can help - how kind! The more mature bloggers chimed in too - we loved the littleredhens plea to help her get younger people blogging. She's only 76. Camelama the cat offered her tips on maximum fur shedding, while Niquita can tell you a thing or two about litter box etiquette. Most useful. 

The mommies and daddies were out in force. We could have for dummies books on everything from advice on breastfeeding, to protecting your toddler's modesty (thanks Stephanie) to sending them away to college from another Bruce.

But we had to chose so we did. The winners were a mixture of books we'd like to read, ideas that made us laugh and suggestions that got us thinking.

1) Profit Doctor - An anatomy book: Gummies, Tummies and Bummies for Dummies

2) Dan Baldwin - Getting raw (and not breaking up with your family) for Dummies. A Book on Raw Food.

3) SallyT  of Imagine this - Chair exercises for Dummies for the Avid TypePad blogger

4) Michelle Yard - Marketing to the over 50's for Dummies

5) Liz@this fullhouse - Don't call me Dummy for Dummies - How some of us prefer to be referred to as challenged

If any one would like to buy the book, Wiley has enjoyed the contest so much they have offered us $5 back offer. Just click on the image to the right.

We'll contact the winners via email or blog comments. Well Done to everyone!

Latest release: New tools to build traffic

March 26, 2010

Ever feel taunted by a flat-lining pageview count on your dashboard? Stats don't always show us what we want to see. When it comes to finding a new audience and increasing traffic, discovery is everything.

Facebook, Twitter, RSS, email, Google Reader, Google search... all these things are outposts for your content that you can update to draw people back to your blog to catch up on your latest posts. Of course, showing up is half the battle.

As bloggers ourselves, we like to build tools that help you get out there and be discovered. So, here's how today's release from the TypePad Team can help build your traffic through discovery

1) Know your audienceKimmie soc med 2

Discovering where your readers are coming from can help you tailor your content for the right audience. Your Stats now give you a clearer picture on social network traffic.

Don't forget to share posts to Facebook, and cross post to Twitter to increase visits from these places

2) Allow your readers to share what they find

The TypePad network is a large and engaged community you shouldn't overlook.  Adding the new improved Follow Me module to your blog will help you build a following on the TypePad network. You can use this rapidly expanding network to build a community around your blog.It's a sure fire way to bump your pageviews in the right direction.

The module now automatically adapts to the design of your blog.

Here's how to add the it                            Tiff follow 2

  • Design  
  • Content 
  • In Categories select About You
  • In Modules select Follow Me and then hit Add this Module.

Here's some more detail plus the advanced template tags. To start building a community in TypePad why not start following some of our featured bloggers?


3) Reach a wider audience

Commonly voted The TypePad Team's most favoritest feature, Reblog and the Blog it Bookmarklet have created a whole new dynamic to posting on TypePad. When we discover great posts, Reblog allows us to capture a snippet of text or an image and repost them to our own blogs. The posts contain a link back to the originating source. This is a huge time saver and instantly gives credit to the inspirational blogger.

So, what's new? Well, now when someone reblogs your post you will receive an email notification with a link to review the new post and see their take on it.  It's a bit like commenting but gives the commentor the opportunity to introduce their community of readers to your ideas and your blog. Cool, right? Your post will also indicate where and how many times it has been reblogged.

But here's the thing. Your posts can only be reblogged if you add the "Reblog" option to your post footer. 

Fortunately it couldn't be easier. Here's how:

  • Design
  • Content
  • Click the edit pencil next the Post footer bar in drag and drop area
  • Check the "Reblog" option
  • Save changes

Again, here are the advanced template tags for this feature.

Try hitting Reblog in the footer of this post and just see what happens... (don't panic it won't automatically post!)

Reblog displayWhat do you find most effective for driving traffic to your blog? We'd love to know in the comments.

Our Kind of Holiday: Ada Lovelace Day

March 24, 2010

Ada_mug Today is Ada Lovelace Day, and it involves two of our favorite things: honoring women in tech and...blogging about it, of course!  Ms. Lovelace is credited as the world's first programmer, and, honestly, who doesn't want to blog about that?  With our shiny new Search API's, we looked up the posts on the subject spanning our whole blogoverse, and more than a few of them are worth sharing.

danablankenhorn wrote a lovely post honoring his coder wife, Jenni, and donna_ekart put the spotlight on her Aunt Karen, an engineer of launch pads. Salesforce honored their own while Alice highlighted the amazing talents of gamer Margaret Robertson. One author shared snippets about Ada-inspired women from his upcoming book celebrating global innovators. A Journalism instructor at the University of West England declares the phrase "I'm rubbish at computers" just plain unacceptable.  Mike Gil's post included the fabulous photo you see here -- and he receives double bonus points for using the phrase "Enchantress of Numbers" in a sentence!

Even the honorees got into their own Ada-blogging: Mrs. MaltaGirl wrote about her own adventures in tech, and CherylMcKinnon gave a whole lot of thanks to professional mentors, role models, and supporters over the years.

Six Aparters acknowledged the day with posts of their own.  David reblogged Gina's encouragement to Code Something Meaningful, and as a lover of all things meta, I posted code for a widget showing TypePad's latest Ada Lovelace posts.

This holiday may only be one day a year, but it's not too late to get credit for it in our books: fire up your Compose editor, and share your own Ada posts here in the comments.  We're more than willing to keep this movement rolling year-round.

Developer update: The Search API is here!

March 24, 2010

We are excited to announce the new TypePad Search API  as part of TypePad's growing suite of APIs. You can now search across all public TypePad blogs, including posts, comments, pages and uploaded media with support for full-text search, filtering and sorting.

What can you do with a Search API? You can explore the great content on TypePad,  power social media dashboards to track conversations and gain insight into what's happening now, build memetrackers, develop content analytics and much more!

Documentation and Additional Resources:
For more documentation and examples, go to the TypePad Developer Resources site and review the available documentation. Are you a developer or interested in working with other TypePad developers? Sign up with the TypePad Developer Network and join the conversation to get help or give us feedback on how we can continue to improve our APIs.

TypePad for Dummies

March 23, 2010

In 2008 we were approached by some TypePad bloggers about the possibility of writing a "For Dummies" book for TypePad. Naturally we said - YES! Absolutely. If they were prepared to take on the gargantuan task of capturing all the secrets of this little application onto the printed page then who were we to stop them? We were pleased to offer the technical (and moral) support.

TypePad for dummies 3 To our delight Shannon Lowe and Melanie Nelson announced the arrival of the book on Amazon a few weeks ago. TypePad for Dummies is a comprehensive, up to the minute run through of all the great functionality TypePad offers.

The book also covers some of the practical blogging strategies that have served the authors so well, and some fine examples that will inspire even the most seasoned blogger. I enjoyed reading this book, and I confess to learning a trick or two myself.

So, if...

1) You are thinking about starting a blog

2) You know someone else who is starting a blog who might feel more comfortable with the instruction manual in their hand or

3) You have a nagging feeling your blog is not benefiting from everything TypePad has to offer

...then you can go here to buy this book.

Giveaway Time!

Alternatively, tell us what you would write your own "For Dummies" book about in the comments and we'll send our favorite responses a FREE COPY of TypePad for Dummies in the mail! We have 5 to give away.

Inspiration

Yes - if you spotted this contest on Facebook a few weeks - this is a re-run. It was so fun seeing everyone's ideas we decided to run it on Everything TypePad as well. Here are some of our favorites for inspiration

  • Driving for Dummies from Isabel Ginsberg of xoisabel
  • Cocktail Party Conversation for Dummies and the socially awkward from Karen Richter of the big 3 blog
  • Being a Superstar Mom and Still Looking Hot for Dummies from Keri Ann Berga of OutNumberedmomma
  • Building groovy sandcastles from Angela Walters. 

We'll announce the winners on Friday.

Spreading the love with the affiliate program

March 22, 2010

TypePad has an active affiliate program that is now supported by a dedicated team.

If you are interested in earning some pocket money you'll find a ton of good advice on this blog in the Affiliate category - be sure to check back for regular updates on how, who, what and when.

What is the TypePad Affiliate Program?

Everyday we spend budget on advertising to get the word out about TypePad but we know our best recommendations come directly from you, our customers. If you are helping us with our marketing efforts we'd like to say thanks.

So here's the deal

Sign up for the program and every customer you send us = $30. It's that simple.

Every time a new customer signs up for a TypePad Pro account through a link on your site, you get a $30 commission. Just click here to sign up. Fill out your information and start adding banners and links to your site. You can also get more information about the program by visiting the TypePad affiliate page

Become and affiliate

Want to learn more about affiliates?  Post questions in the comments section or contact us directly at affiliates@sixapart.com.

TypePad Test Kitchen Update

March 22, 2010

We have been cooking up some new features in the TypePad test kitchen with our beta testing team recently. We were so excited that we couldn't keep them to ourselves. Here's a sneak peak into some new tools coming soon.

In site search

We've had a ton of requests for in site search and now..... it's here (almost)! Soon you will be able to add a search bar to your blog that will allow a reader to search your blog posts and comments within the blog itself (you currently need to use an alternative like Lijit or Google). Here is an example of in site search in the wild.

Reblog gets better

We love ways to help your ideas spread beyond the confines of your blog. Reblog has helped this happen to a certain extent but now we've given it super powers. Read more on the beta blog

Follow me module design improvements

The Follow Me module can be added to any blog to grow your audience across the TypePad network. Adding the module is now easier than before as it adapts to your design without you having to fiddle with design specs. Read More.

Excited? We are. We'll let you know when these have passed the final tests and are ready to be served up.

Updated: Your TypePad dashboard and the TypePad Team

March 17, 2010

You may have noticed that your TypePad dashboard now contains updates from The TypePad Team. We post blogging tips and tricks, product updates (like this one), promotions, exciting events, as well as feature TypePad bloggers.

Your activity can also appear on TypePad dashboards.

Your updates  -  comments, favorites and posts  -  will appear in others’ dashboards if you encourage your readers to follow you on TypePad. Include the “Follow Me” module (which you can find in  Design > Content > About You > Follow me) on your blog, or simply add a link to your TypePad profile, to enable your readers to receive your updates in one simple click.

Update: To stop TypePad team updates appearing in your TypePad dashboard.

Go the profile:  http://profile.typepad.com/typepad. If you are logged into TypePad you should see the option to "Unfollow" on the left hand side under the logo. Select that.

If you don't see the "Unfollow" option click on the "Follow" button, log in. Select "Unfollow"  then hit OK at the prompt.

Read more about Following on TypePad

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