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Posts from October 2011

Profile Week: Let's Get Started!

We'd like to take the next few days to help you get acquainted with your TypePad Profile. Your Profile is a one-page overview of your life here on TypePad, with links to your blogs and social media accounts, information about you, and an activity stream with your blog posts, comments, and favorites. It also feeds content into your followers' activity streams on their own TypePad dashboards, so it's a great way to help your friends and readers keep up with your new posts.

To get started, click on your name in the green navigation bar at the top of any page in your TypePad account. This will bring you to your public TypePad Profile. You can see ours here.

name in navigation bar

If you click to the Edit Profile page, you can add information about yourself like your location, a one-line bio, and your interests. This helps others get to know you at a glance. You can make this information as specific and complete as you'd like, or limit it to just information that's directly related to your blog. It's always up to you. Here's what ours looks like:

add your info

Recent ActivityIf you scroll all the way to the bottom of the Edit Profile page, there's an option for Show the Recent Activity module. This is a very important setting! If you want to share your posts, comments and favorites on your Profile and in your followers' activity streams, make sure this option is enabled. This is how followers will get updates about your new posts and content so we encourage you to take advantage of that opportunity for more exposure!

Stay tuned for tomorrow's Profile Week post about setting a custom URL.


Dog Art Today

NAME: Moira McLaughlin
BLOG: Dog Art Today
TYPEPAD MEMBER SINCE: 2007
WHY WE THINK DOG ART TODAY ROCKS: Moira McLaughlin began her career as an artist in 2005 when she made a dog collage for each of her family members for Christmas. They were a huge hit, and those gifts inspired her to start her company DreamDogsArt where she makes custom collages and dog art products that she sells worldwide. Dog Art Today, her blog, is devoted to daily dog art from around the world. Features include contemporary dog art, the history of dogs in art, dog art auctions, books, posters, and decor. It's the perfect place to find an artist to paint, sculpt or photograph your pet.

Dog_art_today

FOLLOW DOG ART TODAY: on Twitter and TypePad.


Weekend Project: Wide Image or Ad Above Two Sidebars

For this Weekend Project we'll be tackling the task of adding a wide image above the sidebars of a three-column-right layout. This can also be used for wider widgets, large advertisements, and more. Typically, however, it's used when you have something you want to feature above the rest of your sidebar.

Adding Wide Content Spanning Above Two Sidebars

We recommend creating a test blog in your account, then selecting the three-column layout where the post column is on the left and the two sidebars are on the right. The theme you choose can be a duplicate of your existing theme, or you can add any theme of your choice; it really depends on whether you want to test the change for your existing design or a new design.

Adding Wide Content Spanning Above Two Sidebars

To get started, you'll need to go to Design > Content, then add the Embed Your Own HTML module. When you click to add the module, a pop-up box will appear, pre-filled with "Custom HTML" in the Label field, which we recommend changing to something that will remind you what the module is for. The HTML field is where you'll be placing the content you want to span across the two sidebars.

In order to create the space for your content, you'll need to first strip the default module tags that appear around the Embed Your Own HTML module content. To do that, place the following into the HTML field of the Embed Your Own HTML module:

<!-- no_wrapper -->

Immediately below that, you'll need to add the HTML to prematurely close the #beta-inner and #beta DIV tags of the first sidebar. The code for that looks like this:

 </div> <!-- prematurely close #beta-inner -->
</div> <!-- prematurely close #beta -->

If you left the HTML at that, your sidebars would be broken, but that's something that will be fixed before you click OK and save the content changes.

Next up, add the HTML for your content. If, like in our example, you are adding a centered image, the recommended HTML would be:

<div align="center">
 <img src="http://example.typepad.com/image.jpg" title="Image Title" />
</div>

Replace http://example.typepad.com/image.jpg with the URL of your own image. If you're using the space for an advertisement or widget, then paste in the HTML or script that you were provided for that item instead of our example image code.

The final step would be to add in HTML to re-open the closed sidebar by adding in the opening DIV tags. We recommend keeping the same IDs for the DIV tags, which would make the HTML you need to add:

<div id="beta"> <!-- re-open #beta -->
 <div id="beta-inner"> <!-- re-open #beta-inner -->

All of the HTML content together for our example would be:

<!-- no_wrapper -->
 </div> <!-- premature close #beta-inner -->
</div> <!-- premature close #beta column -->

<div align="center">
<img src="http://example.typepad.com/image.jpg" title="Image Title" />
</div>

<div id="beta"> <!-- re-open #beta -->
 <div id="beta-inner"> <!-- re-open #beta-inner -->

Adding Wide Content Spanning Above Two Sidebars

After adding the HTML above, click the OK button and position the module at the very top of the first sidebar. You can then click Preview to see how the spanned area looks before clicking Save Changes.

With that last step, we wrap up this Weekend Project! It can be used for a myriad of things. You can even add more than one item to the spanned area (just place it within the same area as your first image, ad, etc.). So, try it out, have some fun, and let us know how it works out for you!


Please give us your feedback!

We have a quick survey for all our TypePad bloggers. Please take a moment to tell us how likely you are to recommend TypePad.

Answers can be submitted anonymously and we welcome any additional feedback you would like to give about our service. To help us consolidate all the responses, we'd really appreciate it if you could provide feedback through the survey form itself. If you have questions, we always welcome hearing from you in TypePad's Get Satisfaction discussion forum.


Meet Some of Our Newest Get Satisfaction Champions!

Since we’ve implemented the Get Satisfaction Champions program this past summer, we’ve had several people step up and help out their fellow TypePad users. It’s our pleasure to introduce you to some of our newest Champions!

The first we’d like to introduce is Simon Widdowson who runs the Porchester Junior School blogs. Simon does a lot of helping out over at Get Satisfaction, but it was his contributions to the TypeKit alternative discussion that really made him shine. Thanks for always participating, Simon!

Next is Bob Cohen who blogs at Bobology. Bob had some great insight on calendar widgets and which ones to use on TypePad. We appreciate you taking the time to let us know what you use, Bob!

Finally, we have Snoozer, the man behind I Have Fury. He’s also helped out in several places, but his explanation on how to upload a profile picture earned him his Get Satisfaction Champion title. Thanks for helping everyone out!

Not only did Simon, Bob, and Snoozer get a spiffy little Champ icon for their avatars at Get Satisfaction, they also got credit applied to their TypePad accounts and one of the amazing SAY Media shirts that Marc Johns recently blogged about. I personally love my “Powered by SAY” shirt in raspberry and get compliments on it all the time.

If you’d like to help out your fellow TypePad subscribers in Get Satisfaction, remember you can do so by not just answering questions, but by making suggestions to improve a blog, starting a discussion on a useful topic, or anything else that comes to mind. The TypePad support staff closely monitors (and participates) in the forum, so we’ll keep an eye out for anything useful!

Head on over to Get Satisfaction and start your own path to becoming a Get Satisfaction Champion!


Congratulations to The Bitten Word

TypePad bloggers, Zach and Clay, at The Bitten Word recently shared some great news. They've been picked up for interviews with both West Elm and PBS. In their words...

"If you hang out with stylish and smart people long enough, people may start to think that you're stylish and smart just by association.

Which is why we're very excited to have been interviewed recently on one very stylish blog and one very smart one: West Elm's Front & Main blog and the PBS Food blog."

We love to see TypePad bloggers making their mark on the Web. If you love great posts about Food and Lifestyle, go check 'em out today.

Congratulations, Zach and Clay! 

 


Bringing Fronesys to TypePad

Port-fron

Jyoti was launching a new business venture called Fronesys and wanted to host the website for his new company on TypePad. He knew the layout and styling he wanted, but needed help in actually applying it to a TypePad blog. He contacted the TypePad Blog Services team and we set up a Design Implementation Service for him.

The Fronesys design takes advantage of TypePad's Advanced Templates to incorporate a non-standard layout and a number of complex features. It's a great illustration of what's possible on TypePad and Jyoti was extremely pleased with the final results.

Are you looking to set up your personal or organizational website on TypePad or do you have a specific design you would like to implement? Contact us and let us know what you need. And be sure to check out Fronesys.

P.S. You can view this and many other great blogs in our portfolio.


Introducing Scene: Rock City, a New Theme from TypePad

Today we're introducing Rock City, the final theme in the Scene series.

Scene Theme - Rock City
Scene Theme - Rock City

Rock City is a nod to the iconic Kiss song "Detroit Rock City," from their 1976 album Destroyer. Like the song itself, this dark theme rocks out on the edge of glam and grit. We can't get enough of it!

Sadly, this ends the Scene series, but we have plans to release more themes as we head into the new year. We hope you'll enjoy the upcoming themes as much as you enjoyed Scene.

Before we close this post, we wanted to send a quick thank you to everyone who has taken the time to comment, provide feedback, tweet, and click the Like button. It’s been a real pleasure to design and release these themes for you, and we’ve taken away a lot of great tips to help improve the process. Thank you!


New Twitter Data: Optimal Link Placement

via danzarrella.com

Dan Zarrella, the "Social Media Scientist" of HubSpot, just published some very interesting finds about the optimal placement of links in Tweets. His findings suggest that placing the link about 25% of the way through the post (or at the very end) provides the highest click-through-rate (CTR). If you're using TypePad's built in distribution tool then your links will be automatically placed at the end, with your post title filling the body of the Tweet. This seems to be the best approach for the majority of users.

We'd love to hear from you about your own experience. Do you experiment with your Tweet text and link placement? What works best?

Twitter is a great source of traffic. Be sure to connect your TypePad and Twitter accounts and then share your posts to Twitter!


A Blog from William Wegman

NAME: William Wegman
BLOG: A Blog from William Wegman
TYPEPAD MEMBER SINCE: 2011
WHY WE THINK WILLIAM WEGMAN ROCKS: A pioneer video artist, conceptualist, photographer, painter, and writer, William Wegman moves fluidly among various media: from conceptual works to commissioned magazine shots; videos shown in museums to television segments made for Sesame Street and Saturday Night Live; artists' books portraying 19th-century naturalist studies to children's books revealing tongue-in-cheek portraits of town and country life; and from photographic "landscapes" employing his Weimaraner muses to his most recent cycle of landscapes combining found scenic souvenir postcards with drawing, collage, and painting.

His blog's design is clean and classic, and features great anecdotes, photos and artwork, often featuring his famous and well-loved Weimaraners. Woof!

A_blog_from_william_wegman

FOLLOW WILLIAM WEGMAN: on Twitter, Facebook, and TypePad.