WordPress in Plain English... introduction

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Services for Real Estate Pros with garaughty.com

marti garaughty, The Art of Marketing YOU

 Hi guys, in my previous post Aliens, Espresso, WordPress and Rain blogs I mentioned that I'll be starting a new series of tutorials this month... WordPress in Plain English

 Since there seems to be a lot of confusion about even the most basic aspects of WordPress, these tutorials will be based on the questions/problems I hear about most often. Also, if you have ideas or suggestions for future tutorials, let me know and if there is enough interest, I'll try to cover those as well. Let's get started...

 

 

garaughty, blog design, graphics, marketing, wordpress


 

 

 

 

 

 Before we get into the nuts and bolts of WordPress like installation, settings, tweaking the design, etc... I thought we should take look at 2 basic points that seem to cause most of the confusion for people who've never used WordPress before. Those 2 questions are usually something along the lines of...

- Why do I need or why should I use WordPress for my blog or website?

- Should I use WordPress.com or WordPress.org

 

marti garaughty, The Art of Marketing YOU

 OK, nobody "needs" WordPress. You need food, water, air, love and espresso (maybe espresso is just me) but... if you want to build a rock solid, flexible, easy to maintain web presence, WordPress is the platform of choice for some of the biggest names, blogs and websites on the net like...

The Wall Street Journal

Martha Stewart

Robert Scoble

ProBlogger

TechCrunch

Nikon

CNN

BlackBerry

Pepsi

 

 Before we go on, to get the most out of WordPress I'm going to ask you to stop thinking of it as a blog.

marti garaughty, The Art of Marketing YOU

 Yes, WordPress is definitely the most popular blogging platform but it can be used in so many other ways including as a standard website, a newsletter, a book, a photography portfolio, a one page property site, a restaurant menu that updates daily and so on and so on.

 A good example is the front page of my art website. I'm taking time this month to redesign all of my sites so I'm including a screen shot here in case you read this after I make the changes.

marti garaughty, The Art of Marketing YOU

 If you go to http://garaughty.com you'll notice that there is no header, sidebar or footer but this was actually designed in WordPress, that's how flexible it is. It doesn't even have to include a blog or look anything like a blog.

 From an end user's point of view, here are the 3 main reasons WordPress is probably the best platform to launch your blog or website on...

- you can easily install and set up WordPress on any quality web host for free

- you can put a decent looking blog together for $100 or less (upcoming tutorial)

- you can add new pages and content to your WP site content without waiting for your "web guy" to do it

 

marti garaughty, The Art of Marketing YOU

 This next part causes most of the confusion but is really easy to answer and understand...

Should I use WordPress.com or WordPress.org?

 

 The answer is NEITHER! I'm not sure how this became such a point of confusion but the simple fact is that you can't set up a blog on WordPress.org

 The only blog on WordPress.org is the WordPress News blog, nothing else, no other blogs. Take a look and you'll see for yourself. What people who say they're going to "set up a blog on WordPress.org" probably mean is that they are downloading the WordPress software from WordPress.org to set up on their web host but... there is a much easier, faster and better way to do that (upcoming tutorial).

 Now that we're (hopefully) clear on that, the next point about .org or .com is more of a business decision than anything to do with technology. WordPress.com is where a lot of bloggers begin, sort of like a bicycle with training wheels. There is nothing wrong with setting up your blog on WordPress.com if you're using it for fun, as a hobby or whatever.

 But if you're going to do that, you have to think long term and what would be best for your business. A blog on WordPress.com, Blogger.com, Posterous, etc... means you're a guest on their site just like you're a guest on Facebook when you set up a fan page or business page. If for some reason they change the rules, the technology, want to place ads on your page/blog or boot your off because you accidentally violated their terms of service...

 Your blog and all those wonderful backlinks and Google rankings that you've built up could be gone overnight. And if you think this could never happen or need some real life examples, check out...

 

 There's a lesson in Friendfeed's sale for all of us who spend time with social media... We are playing in somebody else's yard. And we can be told to go home at any time.
http://www.conversationagent.com/2009/08/how-social-media-is-like-sharecropping.html

 

 Just a few years ago Facebook erased me from the web for 24 hours. I can’t forget that... Let’s say Facebook wanted to kick you off the system, it could, and that could have deep implications for your business, career, etc.
http://www.scobleizer.com/2010/04/22/facebook-ambition/



Facebook blocks Social Media Today, but We Have to Guess Why
http://socialmediatoday.com/SMC/185245



A stern warning (or lack thereof) - Flickr is watching you
http://activerain.com/blogsview/1180423/a-stern-warning-or-lack-thereof-flickr-is-watching-you-



On the Web, forever has a due date
http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/technology/on-the-web-forever-brhas-a-due-date/article1310077/


 Coraline is a new theme at WordPress.com, where it has replaced Cutline. I think that this is the first time that WordPress.com has removed a theme and switched all sites from that theme to another without prior warning.

http://changingway.org/2010/08/09/coraline-the-wordpress-theme/



Where's your content when the lights go out? Protecting yourself from an online service's shutdown
http://www.socialsignal.com/blog/rob-cottingham/protecting-yourself-online-services-shutdown



Thousands of blogs shut down over 'terrorist material'
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-10692501

 

 The point isn't to scare you but to make you aware that if you're aren't in total control of your own website or blog, then someone else is.

 

marti garaughty, The Art of Marketing YOU

If you have additional topics you'd like to see covered or would like more information about custom graphics, themes or to book a 1 on 1 consultation to create or customize your WordPress or ActiveRain blogs, you can reach me here Later...

For more info about how we can help you stand out from the crowd, contact GiselleStCyr@garaughty.com

garaughty.com

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marti garaughty, abstract art, marketing

garaughty, abstract art, graphic design, WordPress consultant, branding, marketing

 For more information about upcoming marketing partnerships, surprises for your clients, graphic goodies, giveaways and to stay on top of all the new tech stuff . . .

 

garaughty, abstract art, graphic design, WordPress consultant, branding, marketing

 

 

 You can also find me on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google+, LinkedIn and by email...

marti garaughty Instagram     garaughty, abstract art, graphic design, WordPress consultant, branding, marketing     garaughty, abstract art, graphic design, WordPress consultant, branding, marketing     garaughty on Pinterest     garaughty, abstract art, graphic design, WordPress consultant, branding, marketing     garaughty, abstract art, graphic design, WordPress consultant, branding, marketing     garaughty, abstract art, graphic design, WordPress consultant, branding, marketing

 

As well as . . .

 

marti garaughty on YouTube                    marti garaughty on Bandcamp

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Re-Blogged 2 times:

Re-Blogged By Re-Blogged At
  1. Suzanne McLaughlin 09/14/2010 03:38 PM
  2. Susan Laxson CRS 10/03/2010 03:40 PM
Topic:
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Show All Comments
Rainmaker
269,974
Kristen Wheatley
Better Homes & Gardens | The Masiello Group - Brunswick, ME
Supporting Success - Best Job in the World!

This is wonderful timing for me.  I've been using the training wheel version for a while and have just started setting up the real deal.  I look forward to more.

Sep 14, 2010 04:27 PM #45
Rainmaker
530,314
marti garaughty
garaughty.com - Montreal, QC
a highly caffeinated creative type...

Shar... ;-)

Kristen... cool, glad to have you here.

Sep 14, 2010 05:02 PM #46
Rainmaker
120,327
Patsy Overton
Patsy Overton Interiors, Atlanta, Georgia - Duluth, GA

Okay, I have my new domain registered.  On to your next post...

Sep 23, 2010 04:41 AM #47
Rainmaker
530,314
marti garaughty
garaughty.com - Montreal, QC
a highly caffeinated creative type...

Patsy... cool. ;-)

Sep 23, 2010 05:13 AM #48
Rainmaker
596,893
Jim Hale
ACTIONAGENTS.NET - Eugene, OR
Eugene Oregon's Best Home Search Website

Marti -

I'm working my way through this series.  Then I'm going to go back over the posts again as I get a word press blog up and running.

Your comments are as helpful as the posts themselves.  Thanks for giving everyone such great feedback. I have appreciated all the questions members have posted as well as your answers.

Oct 09, 2010 10:12 PM #49
Rainer
155,059
John Cunningham
eXp Realty - Phoenix, AZ
Helping Phoenix Sellers and Buyers find each other

Wowowowow! It's really like having a "web guy" right here with me............available when I need the help.

Oct 14, 2010 02:50 AM #50
Rainmaker
530,314
marti garaughty
garaughty.com - Montreal, QC
a highly caffeinated creative type...

John... I'm just covering the basics but it should be enough to help people who've been trying to do this themselves.

Oct 14, 2010 04:37 AM #51
Rainer
104,693
Troy Pappas
Safe House Property Inspections - Virginia Beach, VA
Virginia Beach Home Inspector

Looks like I am going to get to learn a lot over the next day or two. I am glad you found me, so I could read you. My Wordpress blog is where I really need to focus some effort.

Oct 15, 2010 06:25 AM #52
Rainmaker
530,314
marti garaughty
garaughty.com - Montreal, QC
a highly caffeinated creative type...

Troy... awesome, a lot of people were asking for something like this so it's a good place to start with WP.

Oct 15, 2010 07:02 AM #53
Rainmaker
563,737
Chris Olsen
Olsen Ziegler Realty - Cleveland, OH
Broker Owner Cleveland Ohio Real Estate

Hi Marti -- I am really enjoying starting to read your series here.  You are beyond talented (I browsed your website!)

Oct 23, 2010 03:59 PM #54
Rainmaker
530,314
marti garaughty
garaughty.com - Montreal, QC
a highly caffeinated creative type...

Chris... hi and thx, I really do appreciate the feedback. Have a great weekend!

Oct 23, 2010 04:08 PM #55
Rainer
119,702
Shelly Russon
Franklin Group - Kaysville, UT
Utah's Hometown Realtor

Hi Marti, I started trying to figure out WordPress by watching a 6 minute video that left me more confused than ever! Then I found this series and picked up where the other left off but am now going back to review each part. Thank you so much for clearing up a bunch of my questions and writing this series!

Nov 14, 2010 02:45 AM #56
Rainmaker
530,314
marti garaughty
garaughty.com - Montreal, QC
a highly caffeinated creative type...

Shelly... awesome to hear that, I'm glad this series is helping!

Nov 14, 2010 05:32 AM #57
Rainmaker
55,043
Homer Ray
Eastern NC Homes - New Bern, NC
Eastern NC Homes

I'm late but in..I will read others and catch up..Thanks I have lots of questions..

Nov 29, 2010 11:02 AM #58
Rainmaker
1,178,654
Adrian Willanger
206 909-7536 AdrianWillanger-broker.com - Seattle, WA
Profit from my two decades of experience

Marti~I like the redesign of your site, very cean looking and easy to navigate through, thanks for the tips.

Mar 03, 2011 01:53 AM #61
Rainmaker
530,314
marti garaughty
garaughty.com - Montreal, QC
a highly caffeinated creative type...

Homer... no problem, read on thru and leave any questions you have in the comments.

Adrian... hi and thx. I like to keep stuff clean and simple, it makes things easier for the readers!

Mar 03, 2011 02:13 AM #62
Rainmaker
1,004,473
Karen Anne Stone
New Home Hunters of Fort Worth and Tarrant County - Fort Worth, TX
Fort Worth Real Estate

marti, actually, it is a little too clean for me.  I surely do not like clutter, but sometimes being too clean and simple just doesn't suit me.  If I had to choose between the two, and ONLY these two, I would take Coraline.  It's just me... and of course, your mileage may (and probably will) vary.

Mar 04, 2011 08:49 PM #63
Rainmaker
530,314
marti garaughty
garaughty.com - Montreal, QC
a highly caffeinated creative type...

Karen... hi, re "If I had to choose between the two, and ONLY these two, I would take Coraline"...

 All themes can be turned into anything, I use themes as a starting point based on the technology/features under the hood and then tweak everything to showcase the content.

 From a designer's point of view, it's better to start off with a clean slate and then add the customization. That's why I rip out all the external "stuff" in most themes I use and rebuild them for the specifics of each project.

Mar 05, 2011 12:34 AM #64
Rainmaker
1,004,473
Karen Anne Stone
New Home Hunters of Fort Worth and Tarrant County - Fort Worth, TX
Fort Worth Real Estate

marti, I know you are some sort of combination of a magician, sorcerer and web genius.  I was simply meaning the appearance of what you called simplified, and what Coraline looks like in the dot.com version you get when you open the box... and don't make any changes.

I am guessing that I just prefer something a tad more structured.  It was NOT a critique of anything you have done.  Gosh, if everyone liked the same thing, how boring a world this would be.  Unless, of course, everyone was as talented as you are, and then it would, or course, be Paradise.  < impish smile >

Here are two others that show something that appeals to me.  I would like each of them somewhat "re-arranged..." but again, it just gives you an idea of what goes "boing" in my head:  * Mocha Theme - Theme Demo - StudioPress  and  Theme Preview - "Cover" Theme .  And... who knows what I would have to say after I saw what magic you could work... knowing what I like, or at least what I "think" I like.  Just the ramblings of a crazed non-techie here.  Thank you for your patience in "listening" to me babble.

Mar 05, 2011 11:33 AM #65
Rainer
33,069
Tiffany Chapdelaine Wetherbee
Sankey Real Estate - North Attleboro, MA

I wish I found you a few months ago. I have the standard free wordpress Blog and am trying to figure out what to do next. I am pretty sure I will find my answer here! Thank you!

Jan 27, 2012 12:36 PM #67
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Rainmaker
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