The Blog Revolution Begins

blogging_revolution_projectSo what exactly is The Blog Revolution? We’ll start with some background.

I am a nerd. I am a huge nerd. I was co-president of the computer club in high school, went to the Texas State programming competition. I know a thing or two about computers. I have been reading blogs for the past year and a half. I’ve been reading blogs about blogging for the past year and three months.

I began blogging about the same time. I began blogging regularly in June of 2007. As I got into the EduBlogosphere, I noticed a few things about a lot of smaller blogs.

  • Many don’t do a lot of the things that bloggers tend to recommend for growth
  • Many look as though very little thought has gone into their layout
  • Many seem to have great writers, but unfocused writing
  • Many are difficult to navigate
  • Most of the great posts get buried deep within the blogs
  • Many of the bloggers don’t own their own information
  • Many blogs look exactly the same as many other blogs

The Blog Revolution Project is a plan that will supercharge your blogging skills. These are things that I used specifically to get my blog from its paltry beginnings a year ago to now a readership nearing 300, and growing daily.

Each of the 20 daily articles will conclude with a specific mission that will help you to grow your blog. Some of the missions can be accomplished in a few minutes, some may take weeks to do right. They don’t need to be done in order, but each one will help your blog grow.

Why now?
I figure that with the summer coming up, lots of EduBloggers will be looking for things to do with their blogs. If you can’t commit to join the Project now, it will be a great reference later on in the summer when you have nothing to complain about on your blog!

What if I don’t have a blog?
Now is a great time to start! Here is how I recommend going about it:

  1. Get your own domain name
    It’s not as expensive as you think. Even if you don’t want to install the software below, a $5 domain name can redirect visitors to a Blogger or WordPress.com domain.
  2. Download and install WordPress.org software
    The installation takes a bit of work, but there are plenty of super easy walkthroughs.
  3. Install Google Analytics
    This will help you track all sorts of crazy things on your blog.

If you don’t want to do that, there are tons of free blog servers out there, but bear in mind that free servers (WordPress.com, Blogger, EduBlogs, etc.) don’t gibe you your own domain name, and the information is stored on their servers, meaning they own it.

READ  101 Great Teaching Tips

But I have a blog!
Well, that’s great. I still recommend getting your own domain name, installing WordPress.org, and installing AdSense. WordPress has some incredible importing tools that can import from other platforms. We’ll dig into plugins more later, but Google AdSense (or any other reputable stats package with historical tracking) is ideal.

So what does this project entail?
The project will be broken up into four weeks. Each week will have one daily article, concluding with a mission. Here is an outline for the Project:

Week One – Writing

  1. Add Truckloads of Great Content
  2. Keywords Are The Key
  3. Keep ’em Coming Back
  4. Develop Your Writing Voice
  5. Stay On Target!

Week Two – Reader Experience

  1. Create Community
  2. RSS Visibility
  3. Pluginpalooza
  4. Redesign: The Total Blog Makeover
  5. Clean Up Your Sidebar

Week Three – Marketing

  1. Bring In Interested Traffic
  2. Blog Carnivals: Submission
  3. Blog Carnivals: Hosting
  4. Blog Directories
  5. Guest Posting

Week Four – Networking

  1. Comment Like Crazy
  2. Reply To Comments
  3. Give Credibility To Commenters
  4. Email Readers
  5. Linkfest 2008!

TODAY’S MISSION
Get your own domain name for your blog

  1. It’s cheap and simple. Type in something like “cheap domain names” into Google.
  2. Go with something 5 words or less, and don’t do anything creative like replacing “For” with 4 or anything like that. Find something that goes along with the name of your site (or name the site after the domain name that works). Domain names are heavy in the keyword equations with search engines, so go with a keyword that will apply directly to your goal.
  3. If you already have a blog, have the domain name redirect to your current address.
  4. Once you have your own domain name, post a link in the comments section below.
About Joel Wagner 522 Articles
Joel Wagner (@sywtt) began teaching band in 2002. Though he had a lot of information, his classes were out of control. He found himself tired, frustrated, disrespected by students, lonely, and on the brink of quitting. He had had enough. He resigned from his school district right before spring break of his second year and made it his personal mission to learn to be a great teacher. So You Want To Teach? is the ongoing story of that quest for educational excellence.

15 Comments on The Blog Revolution Begins

  1. Ok, done. Went and bought my domain name from blogspot for ten bucks (teacherninjas.com). Do I still download wordpress even though I have a blogspot blog? And I’ve tried to install google analytics before but I’ll try again when my domain name goes live.

    Thanks for kicking my butt.

  2. Joel, You deserve huge props for your boundless energy! I’ll post a link later on to make my readers aware. Btw, I’ve implemented your “bowl of marbles” classroom management strategy as a productivity commitment device -one hour of good work, one marble. Sadly, there are too few marbles in my bowl this week so I need to finish this paper. Keep up the great work:)

  3. Benjamin, don’t worry about it. As I said, none of the missions are essential, but they will be some things you may want to look into getting set up somewhere down the road. The rest of them won’t cost any money.

  4. I didn’t realize how difficult this would be! I know I paid for the domain name “strangenewteacher.com”, but I haven’t yet gotten my wordpress blog connected to it. I’m supposed to wait 72 hours for some technical reason I don’t understand. Joel, this deserves extra credit.

  5. Yeah, um, this one is beyond me. I’ll think about doing it eventually. I’m new to blogging and still can’t figure out RSS.

  6. Where is the best place to buy a domain? I googled it and was overwhelmed by all the choices. Also, once I buy the domain, how do I redirect it to the blog I already have? I love this series of articles, they’re very helpful. But where are weeks 2-4?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.


*


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Page optimized by WP Minify WordPress Plugin