Interview with Joe from the bookofjoe blog

Interview with book of joe

Bookofjoe is the musings of Joe Stirt. He uses his blog to post something that will interest, amuse or inform anyone who happens to visit. He has many interests and his blog explores all of them. In one post he will show you the Big Mac index and in another he explores the evolution of the Lego logo. Thankfully, he took the time to answer some of our questions so we can learn more about him and his blog.

1) Can you tell us about yourself and your blog?

I’m an anesthesiologist by profession and a writer by passion. I started bookofjoe in August of 2004 when blogging was THE thing and I’ve never stopped, even as blogging has lost its “flavor of the month” quality. No matter; it’s become part of who I am and what I do.

When I began, I posted daily, ramping up quickly to 8 posts/day, appearing hourly 7 days/week 365 days/year.

I kept up that pace until a couple years ago, when a major depressive episode (my fourth) leveled me and it was all I could do to put up a post every week or so. I recovered after 21 months of being pretty much inoperative, and resumed posting, twice/day.

I’m apt to post on ANYTHING: major topics include fashion, medicine, art, history, design, poetry, books, movies, sports, inventions (my own and those of others), writing, science, food, technology, cars, current events… you name it.

2) What is your process for writing a blog post?

I find something interesting and write about it, whether it be a picture, news item, idle thought, what have you.

3) What is the funniest thing that has happened to your blog?

Soon after I began bookofjoe, I posted about Steve Wozniak, remarking on his lack of athletic prowess. Somehow he happened on my post, and posted a comment that, on the contrary, he had been a varsity pole vaulter on the Homestead High School Track and Field Team. That taught me not to EVER assume anything but rather to source everything that appears on my blog. Excellent lesson.

4) What is your favorite feature in Typepad?

a. The fact that I — a certified card-carrying TechnoDolt©® (my neologism) have been able to use it from the get-go, which for me was in 2004.

b. Also, it’s rarely down in recent years, unlike earlier outages which, let’s be honest, happened far too often.

c. I like the format and the way it looks on my computer screen; I am very pleased at how good it looks on my iPhone — and how all functionality for my readers has carried over intact regardless of device.

5) What is the most important thing you have learned from blogging?

That readers like it A LOT when they can count on your posts appearing on a schedule.

6) You have a few minutes, what is your go to tip about blogging?

Use correct spelling and grammar. Readers unconsciously devalue material that fails to meet that standard, thinking if you aren’t accurate about stuff they know, it’s likely your content falls short as well.

7) What is one goal for your blog in the next 6 months?

Just keep on keeping on the way I have been for 13+ years.

About Joe

Bookofjoe imageJoe was born in Milwaukee, left for sunnier skies (U.C.L.A.) at age 18, stayed there till he was 35, then got tired of LA and retreated to Charlottesville aka Podunkville, Virginia, where he remained. He wanted to be a major league ballplayer until he was 15 and realized it wasn’t gonna happen. He had no idea what he would do next, until Viet Nam became a real war and medicine & the draft exemption that accompanied med school attendance beckoned. Life takes you places you never thought you’d go. 

Recent Blog Post

Hello Kitty Earthquake Hood — Bousai Zukin Disaster Protection for Kids

Social Media

The bookofjoe is on Twitter, YouTube, Amazon, Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn and Google Scholar.

Books

Baby and Quantations


Get customers the information they need with Typepad Pages

Get customers the information they need with Typepad Pages

Whether you're a well-known corporation looking to share company news with customers, or an ordinary person who would like to make a little money selling your arts, crafts, or services online (or anywhere in between!) your blog should be a key part of your business strategy.

This month we've looked at how to promote your products in your blog's sidebar, write sponsored and affiliate posts, and motivate your readers with a call to action button. Today we turn our attention to sharing information with Typepad Pages.

Most blogs display their content in a series of posts with the most recent at the top. This is great for keeping readers coming back again and again for new content. But what if you have some information you'd like everybody to see and don't want it to get lost among the new updates? This is where Pages come in.

A Page is a content page similar to those on a non-blog website, with information that doesn't change frequently. You can set up a special "about page" with information about your company and its history; provide a street or mailing address or a phone number for customers to contact you; or share testimonials from clients who love what you do. Pages can also be a great way to consolidate all information about your services in one place, or to display a portfolio of your best work.

The information you provide on Pages may be what convinces a customer that your business is stable and reliable, or that demonstrates you can provide exactly what they need. If you're looking to close a sale from your blog, you'll want to make sure you're using Pages.

To create a Page, log in to Typepad and click your blog's name on the Dashboard or in the "Blogs" drop-down menu along the top. On the Overview page for your blog, you'll see a yellow "Compose" button near the top with an arrow to the right. Click the arrow and a little menu will drop down where you can choose "New Post" or "New Page". You'll want to select the "New Page" option.

New Page

Need to set up something else for your blog first? You can access the yellow Compose button, and the "New Page" option from any of the configuration pages for your blog inside of Typepad.

Clicking the "New Page" link will take you to a new Compose screen where you can create your Page. Give your Page a descriptive title, type up the content you want to share, and add any desired formatting or images. When you're done, publish your Page. You can click the "View Page" link that appears after the Page is published to check out how it looks on your blog.

Now you need to make sure visitors to your blog can find the new Page! Go to the Design > Content area in Typepad, choose the "Links to Your Blog's Content" category then the "Pages" module and then click "Add Module".

Et-pagesmodule

Once you've added the Pages module, your blog's sidebar will display a list of all public Pages, which automatically updates each time you add a new Page. You can also link to especially important Pages using the navigation bar.

If you'd like to make a Page the first thing visitors to your blog see, rather than your blog posts, you can set up a landing page. Don't forget to provide a link to your recent blog posts in this case!

Are you using Pages for your business's blog? What types of Pages do you think are the most useful for your customers? Let us know and share your tips in the comments!


Create A Call To Action Button

Create a Call To Action

One of the best pieces of advice I got about marketing is “Tell people what you want them to do.” A Call To Action button is a great way to tell people what you want them to do. Drive readers to join your mailing list, subscribe to your blog, or purchase a product or service. Buttons make your blog interactive and can be branded to fit your business. There are 3 great free sites that we use to create buttons for Everything Typepad. 

Da Button Factory

Da Button Factory may sound funny (maybe spammy), but it is fun to create buttons here. Put in your call to action, change the font and the color, then download the image to your computer. If you want a fancy button, you can add text, style, border and shadow. Very simple to use! Below are some examples of buttons you can create through Da Button Factory.

Click to check out Da Button Factory

Button Optimizer

As with the other button maker, you can change the text, color, add padding and much more. What makes this stand out is you can add an icon to your button. Search through the many icons they offer to find one to help your call to action stand out. They have many to choose from! Here are some examples of buttons created by the Button Optimizer.

Check out the Button Optimizer

Check out the Button Optimizer
ImageFu.com

ImageFu is another free button and badge making site. You can make a button, but what is cool is you can make a badge to go with your site as well. If you are great at something or were voted #1, let the world know. Add your badge of honor to your website. You can use the badges as buttons as well. Below are examples of badges we would give out if we voted for best blogger in the world. 

Check out ImageFu.com
Once you have your button saved to your computer, you can upload the image to your post. Once you have the image where you want, click on the image to highlight, then click on the Insert/Edit Link button (looks like a chain). Put in the URL and click OK.

These Call To Action buttons can be used in posts or added to a sidebar to direct readers to your shop. The easier it is for readers, the more success you will see!

There are many sites out there that can help you create buttons for your blog. Share in the comments any that you use! 


Featured Blog: A Blog Called Wanda

A Blog Called Wanda logo

A Blog Called Wanda is about paper crafting, card making, art, and photography. Wanda started blogging on Typepad in 2009! It has been a fun journey for her. She posts 2-3 times a week with tutorials on how to make handmade cards. Wanda shares her insights on color theory, photo tips, coloring with different mediums, and photos from her travels.. Her blog just passed one million lifetime hits (Congrats!) and she has developed such a fun community through blogging.

Follow: Typepad | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

Would you like your blog featured on Everything Typepad?

Button_be-featured-today


Making Money With Your Blog: Sponsored & Affiliate Blog Posts

Makemoney

Are you ready to take your blog to the next level and make some money off of it? Typepad allows you to place advertisements on your blog, but what if you want to limit the number of ads that appear on your blog? There are other ways to make money blogging besides displaying ads.  You can write a blog post with curated affiliate links or a product review from a sponsored business.

Affiliate Links - Write What you Love

Is there a product you love and you want everyone to know about it? Blog about it!  Link back to the company, and see if they have an affiliate program.  When you join a business' affiliate program, you can insert text links into blog posts linking back to their business.  Some programs share commission with you if sales are made through clicking your links.  Amazon has a great affiliate program if you are not sure where to get started. Remember to keep your blog engaging and informative with its content and not heavy with spam.  Write from your own experience and make your posts personable. The more engaging you are in your blog, the more visitors will come back - the more views, more ca-ching!  Even if some time has past and someone happens upon your blog post, the affiliate links will still work.

Sponsored Posts - The Work Will Pay Off

Once your blog starts to get noticed, don’t be surprised if more businesses reach out to you and offer you free products and services in exchange for a review. This is all well and good if you’re just looking for freebies, but if you want to make money, do not be ashamed or embarrassed to ask for compensation for your review and offer to publish a "sponsored" blog post where you are promoting the business as well as the product.

Making money as a blogger does not happen over night. It takes work and patience to bring readers to your blog and keep them coming back. This includes leaving comments on other blogs, sharing your blog on social media, and building that engagement with readers.  If you are writing a review about a business, make sure you share that review with them.  They may want to share the link with their followers.  


Featured Blog: AirlinerPulse

AirlinerPulse

AirlinerPulse is keeping the pulse of the global Airline Industry. Covering news, analysis, technological innovations and interviews with industry professionals across the aviation and aerospace sectors, AirlinerPulse helps you discover everything you need to know about the global fleet of aircraft and world schedules, as well as insight on current and future market dynamics and drivers with the complete view of the aviation industry.

Follow: Typepad | Facebook | Twitter

 Would you like your blog featured on Everything Typepad? 

Be featured today!


Promote your Book, Shop, or other items in sidebar with a linked image

Promote

Do you have a book, online shop, or website that you want to promote on your blog? A great way to highlight a link to an outside website is with a compelling graphic in your sidebar. Typepad makes adding a linked image to your sidebar easy with the Add a Sidebar Image module.

At Design > Content, select the Widgets category, choose the Add a Sidebar Image module, and click the Add this module button. A pop-up box will open with several options.

Insert Sidebar Image

  • Label: The label will not appear on your blog though it will help to identify the module at Design > Content.
  • Caption: The caption will appear below the image in the sidebar.
  • Target URL: Enter the URL, including the http://, for the location the image is to link.
  • Link options:
    • Open original image in a pop-up: This option will open the original image in a pop-up window. You would not select this option if you want the image to link to an outside website.
    • Open Target URL in a new tab/window: This option is recommended to link to your book, online shop, or other website that you wish to highlight. Clicking the image will open the outside website in a new tab or window.
    • Open Target URL in the same tab/window: With this option, clicking the image will open the link in the same window. This is not recommended as the reader will be directed away from your blog.
    • No link. Do not open a pop-up or tab/window: The image will not be a link with this option.

Most likely you will want to select the Open Target URL in a new tab/window option. Next, you will upload the image you want to link. Click the Upload Image button. Click the Choose File or Browse button to view and select the image file from your computer.

Insert Image

Click Insert Image and then click OK. Drag the module to the preferred location in the sidebar. Finally, click Save Changes to update the published blog with the new module.

Now, you have promoted your items for sale or outside website with an image that will grab a visitor's attention!


New Feature: Embed Instagram Posts

Instagram and Typepad

Today we are excited to share with everyone our new Instagram feature. You can now embed posts from your Instagram or someone you follow. This is great when discussing latest news or showing your readers "behind the scenes" of your blog! Working from your desktop or your mobile device, you can add your Instagram posts for your readers!

Add an Instagram post to your blog

From the Compose page, click on the Instagram button. In the pop up, paste in the embed code from Instagram. Click on Ok. Super easy!

Embed Instagram

Get Your Instagram Embed Code Typepad Tip Instagram

Not sure how to get the embed code from Instagram? We can show you! From your browser (either on your desktop or mobile device) go to your Instagram account.

From your browser, you can go to any Instagram account (including yours) if you know the username. Go to the URL http://instagram.com/username (replace the username with the Instagram username.)

Click on the image you want to embed to view the three dots. Click on the three dots and then click on the Embed button. Click on Copy Embed Code. 

Embed code from Instagram

Copy the code Instagram provides, then go back to Typepad and paste it in. 

This is a perfect way to introduce your readers to your Instagram and we hope you love it just as much as we do! Feel free to leave us a comment so we know how you like using this new feature. If you have any suggestions for ways we can improve it, make sure to leave comments on that too! If you need more information about embedding your Instagram post, check out the Knowledge Base. As always, the support team is here to help you out. You can open a help ticket with any questions to get one-on-one support.


4 Ways Typepad Can Help Promote Your Blog

Typepad can help promote your blog

Promoting your blog can seem like a full time job. Posting to social media is fun, but Typepad can help introduce your blog to a new set of readers! Here are a few different ways Typepad can help you promote your blog.

Become a Guest Blogger

We like to spread our knowledge about Typepad, but we love it when our bloggers share their knowledge as well. Being a guest blogger is a great way to promote your blog and establish credibility as a professional blogger. We like to know what programs help you blog, any tips or tricks you like using in Typepad, and your experience blogging.

 Become a Guest Blogger

 

Shop Typepad

Does your blog help your business? Shop Typepad is our storefront that showcases our bloggers and their shops. This is a great place to support your fellow bloggers and purchase unique gifts for those you love. We love to support our charities, small businesses and indie retailers.

Submit your Business or Organization Today

 

Be interviewed by Typepad

Let us interview you about your experience blogging. Answer a few questions and we will share your interview on Everything Typepad. Share your goals for blogging and what makes your blog unique with everyone. We want to share the story of your blog and what is important to you.

Be Interviewed by Typepad

 

 Be Featured on Everything Typepad

Introduce yourself to other bloggers through Everything Typepad. We will showcase your blog with a great image and a little blurb you write yourself. Tell everyone what makes your blog great and why they should start reading it! We will include links to your blog and social media accounts.

Be Featured Today

 

Four unique ways to promote your blog through Typepad. We love our bloggers and want to help spread the word about your blog. Click a link and get started today.


Using Canva and Picmonkey to create stunning visual content for your blog

Using Canva and Picmonkey to create stunning visual content for your blog

On average, visual content performs 4.4 times better than text based content (Source Chute and Digiday).

Let that fact sink in. If your blog is nothing but text, you may be missing out on readers. Creating visual content can be daunting. At Typepad, we use two great programs, Canva and PicMonkey, to create and edit visual content for our blog. Each site has a free version you can start using today.

Canva long

Canva is a great product to help you create beautiful designs. They have a free version for you to go in and start exploring their countless features. You can customize one of their many templates or start from scratch. They have great tutorials to help get you started using Canva.

The pre-made templates that Typepad uses the most are the Blog Titles and Social Media templates. Preset dimensions make it easy to create visual content that will fit nicely in your blog or social media posts. Canva is also useful in creating infographics. Infographics are a great way to provide information in a visual form. The Typepad team loves to use them, as you can see with our Google Design article, because they are easy for readers to digest a large amount of information visually.

Some examples of visual content created through Canva:

Hunt banner

Email domain

 

 

PM logo

PicMonkey is a creative tool to help you edit images. You have a chance to show your creativity and style. They have a free version for you to start using right away. You can upload an image, add filters, and add text or overlays to an image. PicMonkey is great for editing a profile picture for your About page on your blog or social media sites. One feature we like is the collage feature. This allows you to have multiple images in one to fit into Facebook, Pinterest and blog posts. Their tutorials are easy to follow and can help you take an image and add pizzazz. Don’t monkey around, upload a picture and start today.

An example of images created through PicMonkey:

Brianna quote Laura quote


Now that you have all the tools you need to start adding great images to your blog posts! If there are other free or inexpensive image editing tools you use, let us know in the comments.