May 6, 2016

Why you should Use Images in your Next Blog Post

Looking for a surefire way to draw more readers to your blog? If you aren’t already including images in your posts, you might just want to consider changing your ways. Images draw readers in and keep their attention. Here are a few reasons why: Breaking up Chunks of Text There is a reason the “listicle” is so popular. They are easy to read, entertaining, and useful. Why? Text becomes more digestible when the writer applies headings, subheadings, numbers, or bullet points. This breaks the text up into smaller, consumable parts. Not only can the reader more easily navigate an article that is broken up into parts, but he or she will be more inclined to read on when the document is structured, as opposed to one large block of text. Like numbers and headings, images, when used to break up large chunks of text, can provide this structure. Providing Images, a Visual Break In the same vein, images can give visual breaks to a document. You want to do whatever you can to keep your readers’ attention throughout your post, and attention can wane when the reader’s focus is compromised. When presenting large amounts of information, it is important to offer breaks to your reader, in order for him or her to process the information presented. The occasional image in between paragraphs can offer just that. Even if the reader only glances at […]
April 25, 2016

Top 10 Reasons to Have an Ezine

Establish yourself as a trusted expert. People search online for information and will look to you, as a subject matter expert, to provide it to them. Every week (or whatever schedule works) provides an opportunity to build on this, while reinforcing your brand. Build a relationship with the people on your list. It’s common knowledge that people like to buy from people they like. By using ezines to connect with readers in their homes, you can develop a relationship of familiarity and trust. Be sure to share a little about yourself or your company in every issue, whether it is an anecdote, event, or employee spotlight. Keep in touch with prospects and clients. Consideration should be given to eventually developing two ezines: one for prospects and one for clients, as each require different information. This is a great way to notify your readers of weekly specials or upcoming product launches, offer new articles or customer stories, and provide links (or urls) to updated FAQs, blogs and splash pages. Drive traffic to your website or blog. As noted in #3, remember to call attention to new blog posts or other changes to your website with links directly to those pages. Remind readers of your online newsletter archives. Promote special sales (maybe with discount coupon codes only for subscribers) with a link to the sales page. Use links to turn your ezines and newsletters into […]
April 22, 2016

How to Write Concisely

A writer should employ clarity and conciseness in any type of writing to eliminate misinterpretations and to engage the reader. Writing filled with poor word choice, redundancy, weak sentences, and passive voice will fall flat and lose the reader’s interest. Here are some tips on writing concisely. Word Choice Oh, the importance of word choice. In order to ensure conciseness and clarity, you must choose your words wisely. Writers often use weak, unnecessary words as filler in their sentences, and this can detract from the meaning of your writing. Opt instead for specific, purposeful words that add meaning to your sentences. Avoid using words like “really” and “very,” as they hold little value. Scan your document for any areas where you may be able to break down a phrase by replacing it with one or two more purposeful words, for example, “The carnival was really fun and we won a lot of prizes,” could be revised to say: “We enjoyed the carnival and scored big on prizes.” Redundancy In any type of writing, redundancy deters readers. If you are trying to create emphasis, state the importance of the subject clearly in your sentence, rather than repeating it multiple times throughout a paragraph. You may be using redundant words or phrases without realizing it. Check your document for phrases that repeat themselves and eliminate them, for example, “She completely ruined my favorite shirt and […]
April 18, 2016
15 Tested and Proven Ways to Build Your Subscriber List

15 Tested and Proven Ways to Build Your Subscriber List

A list of engaged subscribers is one of the most effective and reliable marketing resources. A good list so valuable that it can’t be bought. Why? Because when subscribers sign up for your list, they’re signing up to hear from you and your company. Subscribers have to be earned. What are the best ways to build a list? We’ve collected the top 15 to share with you today. The permission model allows you to fill your audience with people who are genuinely interested in your brand and what you have to say With information collected during sign-up (or later), you can precisely segment your list and design your email communication to suit your reader’s preferences. As you attract qualified leads, you’ll be able to guide them through the decision-making process by aligning content to specific buying cycle stages. Take a look at the 15 tips we’ve collected to help you build your email marketing list: Offer quality content. Nobody gives up their email address for free. If you want to build a valuable relationship and engage your audience, you need to provide content that is worthwhile and interesting. Put sign-up forms on every web page. Your sign-up form should be everywhere your potential subscribers are. Make sure it’s visible and easy to fill out. Use social media to collect email addresses. Integrate your sign-up forms with social media platforms. Driving traffic from multiple […]
April 13, 2016
Wordpress

Obtaining Your WordPress Database Credentials – Password

Obtaining your WordPress database credentials is fairly straight forward for all versions. You can find your WordPress database credentials by going to your web root directory and downloading / opening wp-config.php Within this file you will find your WordPress database credentials. Below is a sample of code taken from a wp-config.php file from WordPress version 4.4.2 WordPress Database Credentials Open your wp-config.php file located in your web root. (The following is copied right out of WordPress’s wp-config.php file) Detailed Documentation about WordPress wp-config.php [crayon-59267bf89eed4848585096/] This tutorial will help most of you, as nearly 50% of WordPress users are using the latest version of WordPress or some very near recent version. If you are not running the latest WordPress version you should consider upgrading your site. Is this information not useful to you? Are you running an out of date version of WordPress? Contact me and let me know how I can help you with your WordPress site. www.MichaelCertoma.com
April 7, 2016
Writing Tips

6 Tips to Improve your Writing Skills

Feel like you’re at a standstill with your writing? It’s easy to develop a love/hate relationship with writing; when it’s good, it’s good, but improving your skill can feel like a chore. Here are six tips that will help you reach your full writer’s potential. 6. Research thoroughly You have probably been told at some point that you should “write what you know,” as in, “don’t step too far out of your own personal experience, lest your writing fall flat from lack of knowledgeable detail.” And this rule certainly has value, but only to an extent. There is no reason you shouldn’t write about something you don’t know—but if you do, you had better make sure you do your research, and a lot of it. Learn as much as you can about your topic, and take notes. Ask yourself questions, and then answer them. The more you know about your topic, the easier the words will flow, since you won’t be flitting back and forth between your Word document and a page on the Internet that you’re paraphrasing from. 5. Prioritize Make writing a priority. Set aside a specific amount of time every day to write. Create a routine, and stick to it. Write up a schedule for yourself, and make those few hours as productive as possible. Cut out any distractions and try to focus entirely on your task. It’s tempting to […]
March 30, 2016
Post vs Article

Difference Between Blog Posts vs Articles

What is the Difference Between Blog Posts vs Articles? Some writers say they are one in the same, but is there really a significant difference between blog posts vs articles? Knowing the answer to this question might determine how you write about your next topic, so it may be a good idea to understand the key aspects of both forms. Here are some of the differences between a blog post and an article: Blog Posts A blog post employs a less-formal, conversational tone. Blog posts are typically brief and easy to scan, and often include lists and/or images. They are often built around SEO keywords to draw traffic to a brand’s website ( http://www.makealivingwriting.com/writing-an-article-vs-writing-blog-post-differences/ ). A blog writer is free to offer his or her opinion, whether informed or uninformed. In fact, many posts are about a personal experience or a lesson learned. Blog posts can act as a set of instructions or a list of tips or tools. The writer may or may not include research and statistics; the rules are bit more fluid for a blog post than they are for an article. Blog posts are designed to present information or an opinion in an easily digestible fashion that can reach a wide, diverse audience. They are almost always written in the first person. Articles Articles are generally well-researched, scholarly, and detailed ( http://www.wedowebcontent.com/faqs/what-is-the-difference-between-an-article-and-a-blog/ ). They provide information in the form of data and […]
March 26, 2016
Drupal

Obtaining Your Drupal Database Credentials – Password

Do you need your Drupal database credentials? Maybe you are taking over a new clients site, you have lost your old credentials, or just forgot them.  Regardless of why you need your Drupal database name, username, and password I will guide you through how to obtain this information easily in less than 60 seconds. Requirements to Obtain Your Drupal Database Credentials You will need access to the website’s files.  You may have: Local Copy Web Hosting File Manager FTP Drupal 8.x Open your settings.php file located in /sites/defualt (The following is copied right out of the Drupal 8 settings.php file) Detailed Documentation about Drupal 8.x settings.php [crayon-59267bf89f44b032792301/] Drupal 7.x Open your settings.php file located in /sites/defualt (The following is copied right out of the Drupal 7 settings.php file) Detailed Documentation about Drupal 7.x settings.php [crayon-59267bf89f451462080079/] Drupal 6.x Open your settings.php file located in /sites/defualt (The following is copied right out of the Drupal 6 settings.php file) Detailed Documentation about Drupal 6.x settings.php [crayon-59267bf89f454495200280/] This guide is concise and straight forward. Note, that the code above, aside from the Drupal 6.x snipet, shows information for mysql. The above information will satisfy most users cases and only vary slightly for mysqli or pgsql. If you are a mysqli or pgsql user, you will still be able to locate your Drupal database credentials within the same file as mentioned above. Need professional help? Contact me: www.MichaelCertoma.com
March 23, 2016
Engaging Blog Post

How to Write an Engaging Blog Post – Guide

Writing a bland, ordinary blog post is easy. Writing an engaging, awe-inspiring blog post is hard work, but which would you prefer? If you would rather your article make waves than get lost in a sea of writing, here are some tips on writing an engaging blog post every time. Choose your Topic It might sound obvious, but the first step to writing a killer engaging blog post is to choose your topic. The catch is that you have to choose the right topic. Whether you are writing a post for your own personal blog, for your company’s blog, or for a client’s blog, you’re going to want to choose a topic that will interest your audience. Think outside of the box. If your company or your client’s company lacks in the thrill department, let’s say we’re discussing a paper company, branch out. What do you use paper for? What are different ways to use paper? How can you make paper interesting? You could write a how-to post about making origami, or even a list article exploring different paper crafts. You could even explain how to create the most aerodynamic paper airplane. The point is that you don’t have to stick strictly to the technical aspects of your topic. Know your Audience After you choose your topic, consider who you are addressing. We can use the paper airplane topic as an example. What […]
March 9, 2016

A Beginner’s Guide to Blogging

Blogging can seem daunting.. Creating the perfect blog can seem a daunting task. The first few steps in any great project are often the hardest, and blogging is no exception. Whether you have a clear picture in your mind of the blog of your dreams or just a basic idea, there are simple questions you can ask yourself to help you get started. What do I want to say? The first and most important question you should ask yourself when starting a blog is, “What do I want to say?”  Choosing a topic seems easy enough, and you most likely have one in mind already, but there are thousands of blogs, and many people are writing about similar subjects. What unique perspective do you have to offer? You want your blog to stand out from the masses. Even if you are writing on a popular interest, you will need to come up with a fresh way to present it. The narrower your topic, the more successful your blog will be. Make sure your topic is something you can write about regularly. Choose something that is a daily part of your life, otherwise you will struggle to maintain your blog, and may even lose interest over time. How do I want to say it? Are you promoting a product? Representing a company or your own business? Do you have a special skill you wish […]