Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Blogging Tidbits by Author JO ANN HERNANDEZ

Your response to Jo Ann's guest blog was so positive that I've asked her to come back regularly. Okay -- she was coming back anyway. That you appreciated her advice was icing on the cake. Oops, cliche-alert.

Here's some tidbits of knowledge via Ms Hernandez:

Things I’ve Noticed

Everyone who follows BronzeWord Latino Authors posts and links from @LatinoBookNews knows that I love doing research. Usually I go to a blog and look for their email address and their Twitter name so I can contact the owner and invite them to participate in what I’m doing. Or if I am twittering their article, I want to use their Twitter name so they know that their post had value.

Because of my constant searching, I have seen a few things that work well and a few things that are enough to cause me to want to pull my hair out. Most people will search casually and if they don’t find a way to communicate within a few minutes, they go somewhere else. Here are a few thoughts.

If you have a blog, you want people to connect with you. The email can be protected easily by using words for the @ and (.) like AT and DOT so that your email can be on the front page and look like BronzeWord1 AT yahoo DOT com. Also this information needs to be what the expert calls “above the fold.” The part of your blog that a visitor will first see when they open your blog.

Also, many people who use Blogger will put their email on their profile where the person has to click on the word “email” and an email page opens separately. First, when I had an older computer and really old software, the separate email page never came up for me. Also, because I have a very slow computer, the page takes forever to download. And because this separate email page is from Outlook, an email service I don’t use, I can’t send a message from that page because if they response by clicking “reply” they will go to an account I rarely check. Instead, I copy the email address and post it on a doc page that I will get back to when I am ready to send the invitation. That’s a lot of work to capture one email address. Most people won’t wait for the tedious response.

If you have a blog for people to connect with you, please post your email address in your “About Me” section or in the top of the screen that shows when you open your blog. Allow people to express their gratitude or thanks for what you offer on your page. Or they may have something to add to what you offer. If a big corporation looks around the web, comes across your blog, and likes what they see, they have no way to contact you. They will not bother searching and waiting for separate pages to open up. They won’t.

Most everyone has a Twitter account. Everyone posts the widget that says, “Follow Me” with the little blue bird. Hardly anyone post their Twitter account name. The little blue birdy isn’t enough.

For one thing, when you click on the blue birdy, you are taken to another page. If the person wants to follow you, they have to sign in to their Twitter account to do so. Once they are there, do you think they will go back to your page? Or do you think they will decide since they are there, they will check for messages or what’s going on in Twitter cyberspace? If you had a product to sell, or wanted to interest them in your product/book/music/whatever, you’d lose that opportunity. Completely.

There is a cute blue birdy that has your account name and the number of your followers on the widget with a “Follow Me” message. A visitor could get your name and save it to follow you later when they move on from your blog page. And that’s the key. They stay on your page. This widget can be found at twittercounter.com . I don’t have any connection with them. You can see the widget on my blog.

Or you can use the title section of the widget to post your Twitter name, like: Jo Ann @ BronzeWord with the widget underneath.

I am a major non-techie. On my Wordpress blog, when I enter a link, I am asked if I want it to open on my page or a new pop-up page. A new pop-up page keeps the visitor on your site as they investigate the new page and doubles the chances of the visitor returning to finish reading your article or browse the rest of your blog.

Please investigate Google Alerts. This is an easy way to see who is writing about you or your product or talking about you. Just go to Google and sign up. List the names that are your company, blog, and product names and let the cyber angels do the rest. Use quotes around your name or your product’s name. You will find that some little blog in Nebraska liked your article so much they are telling their 15 followers to go check you out. That will enable you to respond to that blogger to say thanks or make an offer and find out that those 15 followers have thousands following them. Wouldn’t you rather know what is being said about you on the Web?

We’ve all heard stories of how a company hears of a complaint on Twitter and resolves the issue for the customer. Now you can be as cool as Twitter and do the same thing by having a Google Alert on your name.

Thank you for allowing me to voice a few things I have noticed during my travels through cyber space. I hope these tidbits assist you in growing your blog audience.

Jo Ann

Jo Ann Hernández
BronzeWord Latino Authors
BronzeWord1 AT yahoo com


  1. You're making life for a lot of writers much easier. Thanks, Jo Ann.

  2. Great tidbits of information. Thanks for the post.

    Karen Cioffi

  3. You're very welcomed, Karen. Thanks for contributing such great books for our children to read. And thanks for stopping by.

  4. Oh wow I"m on again. Joylene should know I"m hard to shut up when we were on the phone. Thank you Karen for stopping by. If you have any tips, I'm always ready to learn. This business of responding to comments like Joylene does is a bit hard for me. I"m so busy I don't tend to check in often. Also the program on my wordpress comment page has a reply button but it doesn't work. Well come to think of it, I'm getting the experience here, doing this. Well, Thank you Joylene for allowing me to learn something new too. Gosh I'm so smart I teach myself. ha ha
    Jo Ann

  5. Hi,
    Thanks for all the great advice!
    Deb :-)

  6. Thanks Deb. Sure any time. I always like hearing myself talk. And speaking of advice, I have this problem...Oh wrong blog! sorry! ha ha
    Jo Ann

  7. Hmmmm.... I go from Florida to Canada to talk to someone from Texas.

    I hear what you're sayin' about all this bloggy 'how to' stuff - wish there was more time - I'm barely functioning now. How 'bout I give you my password & you set it all up? Good stuff.

  8. Hey JaxPop you make me laugh and for a person that suffers from depression that's a feat!!!!! ha ha ha

    Yeah I'm from Texas and that's probably why I like hearming myself talk so much. ha ha

    Go to my blog and visit. if you like what you see I can do for you or maybe offer some tips on how to do it simplier. I have to say I entered all those links one by one by myself. One thing I do is listen to books on CDs while working on boring tasks like that. Helps and makes me feel like the whole time wasn't wasted!
    take a gander!
    Jo Ann

  9. When I started blogging, I came across an interesting tip from the wordpress people. They said to check the comments for typos, because the comments reflect on you as a blogger. So I always do. It's also a courtesy to the commenter. I know I hate it when I click that submit button and see too late that I made a mistake. It's not something the commenters will ever know about, but it doesn't matter. If they look good, I look good.

  10. oh oh I know that last commenter is talking about me. I type fast and click even faster. I do look to check for typos and some words and I am such a bad speller that I don't even confuse Spell Checker!

    Also you do have a point and I edit my thoughts so it's like give me a break. isn't there a place I can take it easy? and the answer is of course no. If I am writing about tips on how to make your blog work better and my comment is filled with typos then duh!!!

    I do edit and I do follwo my typos to correct. Spelling I'm hopeless. I am an Equal Opportunity Language Mangler. I speak both Enlgish and Spanish badly. I do the best I can.

    I must admit when I am being silly as I tend to do with Joylene I will let some things go. Yeah blame Joylene for being stupid. ha ha ha
    Jo Ann

  11. man I just reread my comment and it's so full of typos it's pathetic. No excuse. I'm hopeless. Sorry Folks!

  12. THANKS for stopping by, Pat. Hope your book tour is going well. I'm there in spirit supporting you.


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