Two Steps to Schedule Your WordPress Blog Posts — It will make your blogging easier

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Scheduling posts on WordPress is like sitting at home in an easy chair with the TV remote, and a cup of hot cocoa (well, maybe not that comfy). Scheduling your blog posts is a feature that shouldn’t be overlooked by business bloggers because it’s a huge tool that will help you manage your time and keep you blogging. schedule_wordpressYou’ll need to login to your WordPress dashboard. Look to the right and you’ll see “Publish”. Now follow Step 1 and Step 2.

Step 1: Click the “Edit” link next to “Publish Immediately”

Step 2:  Date and time boxes will appear and you can then set them for the date and time you’d like to post (or publish). Be sure to click the “OK” button to set the date and time you’ve selected– the blue “Publish” button will change to “Schedule”. Click the blue button to finish scheduling.

How does scheduling help business bloggers?

I have one client who is a prolific blogger. When he’s in the midst of multiple events he writes and writes so he has a stash of posts that he can then schedule to publish over several days so he doesn’t bury readers with multiple posts in one day.

I have other clients whose blogging style center around vacations. Some want to have written their posts and have the scheduled to publish while they’re away from their desk. Other clients go on working vacations where they write a stash of posts and then schedule them to post later.

Scheduling blog posts works well for teams.

I have several clients who work as a team on their blog posts. Scheduling allows for a delay in publishing to gather up all the pieces needed for a post and for editing, yet still assuring a post will be timely and on track for publication.

Think of scheduling when you want to make your blogging easier.

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Icon Recognition vs Interactive Links – The Thought Behind Buttons You Can’t Click

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One of my pet peeves are graphics that look like buttons, but do nothing.  I think of the poor web user punching away at them with their mouse and getting no where. But what about graphics that look like buttons on a box? Well, that’s not nearly as annoying as it sounds.

Yes, I’m torn. Part of me looks at a box with social media icons and I cringe because it violates the rule, “Get them to a destination with the least number of clicks.”  I would really like to see social media icons in print next to a web address that takes me to a page with the icons prominently displayed so I can start an online experience– clicking from a website is a few steps less than going to a social media site online or through an app and typing in a search for a business.

However, these “dead” icons are more of a comment on how recognizable they have become as “logos” for social media sites. They are simple. They are immediately recognized for the sites that they represent. Even the youngest kids know what they are. They are as recognizable as… well, the Nabisco triangle. They announce we’re on social media.

I found the Nilla Wafers page on Facebook (https://facebook.com/nillawafers/). Nilla ain’t my thing but chocolate is so I had to experiment with a chocolate version of their no bake cakes. Sweet!

Bottom line: social media icons are brand recognition.

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Tired of the Ring of Those Google Plus Local Listing Calls?

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Is your phone ringing off the hook with those calls that begin “Our records show you have not updated your free Google (business) listing.” Ugh! Please be aware that they may hint at being Google, but it’s highly unlikely that Google would be calling you.

I’ve experienced and have heard complaints that the calls are annoying because of their frequency. They’re also hard to pin down– they use multiple phone numbers from various states. If you do business in multiple states, even with caller ID, you may be tempted to answer the call from an out of state location.

If you have call blocking you can try blocking them. The use of multiple phone numbers makes it hard to block… block one number and they’ll only use a different number.

Are they selling? Are they phishing? Are they scamming? Who knows! My gut feeling is when someone goes out of their way to “hint” that they are someone else and go to great lengths to disguise their phone number– well, it just feels like they’re up to no good so I’m not interested in what’s behind the mask.

The one thing they do that I think is really vile. They pray upon the fear of business owners that they are missing out on a key piece of marketing on the Internet, or perhaps their website won’t perform well in Google searches. When website owners hear “Google” mentioned they freak out because they know the importance of being found in the search engines.

Take a deep breath. You’re not missing out. Engaging with these callers will not enhance your Internet presence.

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Yarn Brain, Graphic So Good Your Head May Itch

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This  is a graphic that so good I had to share. What says “fuzzy” better than yarn? On mornings when I feel like I need that second cup of coffee before the first, I’ll be thinking of a yarn brain! (from O Magazine, July 2014)

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Online and Offline… Your Business May Depend on Credit Cards

credit cardsAs I work with web clients I ask if they will be accepting credit cards… whether online or through a terminal. There are very few businesses that can thrive without accepting a credit card. This is the new fact of life as we move to a cashless society. So, why is there still resistance to accepting credit cards?

I suggest if there’s resistance to card that someone do a Walmart experiment. I have to admit this is my own tactic to see what’s up with cash vs. card. Here’s how it works… you go to the slow line at Walmart on a Friday evening or Saturday morning. You want the long, slow line so you have plenty of time to scope things out. Why Walmart? Because it’s the crossroads of the American marketplace… you’ll see young and old, rich and poor, credit cards and food stamps (and by the way they aren’t paper anymore, food stamps are a plastic card!). What you won’t see much of are checks. When you do see someone writing a check you’ll notice. Believe me, you’ll notice! Writing a check in line at Walmart is enough to gum up the works. You’ll see everything come to a halt while they pull a cashier off another busy aisle who has check approval authority or they search for a manager. Reminder to self, stay out of the line where it looks like someone will be writing a check!

What does this tell us about Walmart and check writers? Walmart views check writers as a puny enough part of their business that they don’t have a plan in place to streamline through checkout.

Studies of the spending behavior of Generation Y reveals they carry less cash and use electronic payments online as well as credit cards to conduct business. If you think Generation Y are kids in high school or college students you need to catch up. I like to think of Bill and Hillary Clinton and their daughter Cheslea to explain generation distinctions. Bill and Hillary are baby boomers and Chelsea is a child of a baby boomer, a Generation Y. Generation Y are the age of college graduates, young married couples and households who have started having families. Is this a generation of clients or customers you want to exclude from your business?

I know what you’re thinking… only young people use electronic payments and credit cards. I was recently in a bank and overheard an 80-year old (probably older) customer having a conversation with the bank manager. It was a pretty loud conversation because of fading hearing, but it was clear she was. Are you thinking this is one senior, well seniors have been thrown into the world of electronic debits and credits by the Federal government—on March 1, 2013 a new law went into effect that all Social Security recipients were required to switch to direct deposit. If money is going into an account via electronic banking it becomes more likely that electronic payments aren’t too far behind.

If you eliminate the young and the old from doing business with you via electronic payments, then what business is there left to do?

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