This post is part of a weekly series, Fetching Friday, featuring interesting discoveries and useful resources on the net, random tidbits of news, and a preview for next week’s posts on kikolani.com.
While my main focus has been bringing you lots of online resources, I recently stopped to think those people that would rather curl up on the sofa with a good book. So I moved away from my glaring monitor, and into a few local bookstores to check out some good technical resources on the shelves. Here are some of the ones I found that had some useful information.
Building a WordPress Blog People Want to Read – This book covers the basics of setting up a WordPress blog, from installation to troubleshooting. It also covers whether to choose a pre-designed theme, or to build one yourself.
The 2009 Internet Directory: Web 2.0 Edition – This directory gives you websites, videos, podcasts, blogs, social networks wikis, and other links to the best sites for a wide range of topics including: branding, careers, entrepreneurship, current events, politics, education, entertainment, family/parenting, food, health, hobbies, home, shopping, sports, travel and more.
Blogs, Wikis, MySpace, and More: Everything You Want to Know About Using Web 2.0 but Are Afraid to Ask – The basics of everything Web 2.0 for beginners.
Social Media Marketing: An Hour a Day – A guide to creating a social media marketing strategy for your brand or business and maintaining it. Includes an in-depth look into the big social networks: Facebook, Myspace, Twitter, LinkedIn, and more.
YouTube: An Insider’s Guide to Climbing the Charts – How to create a video (including the storytelling, direction, shooting, editing and rendering), broadcast, and market it to viral success.
SEO: Search Engine Optimization Bible – Covers optimizing your website for search engines, pay per click strategies, keyword targeting, and tapping into social media to drive your site to the top of search results.
Also, don’t forget the newsstand. Two of my favorite web design magazines, Web Designer Mag and .net Magazine not only have great galleries, tips and tutorials, but they come with a CD with full programs, program demos, royalty free media (photos, music clips), source code or files for the tutorials, and more. These magazines are from the UK, so they are pricey (16.00USD), but they are worth it for, for the resource CD alone.
This week, I have spent a lot of time on Twitter, and found a wealth of resources. If you’re not using Twitter, you should be – it’s a great network to share information with in people in all ares of interest.
Find followers and add yourself by interest to Twitter directories – Just Tweet It and Twellow
Add Twitter links to your website using these unique, beautiful Twitter icons
50 Twitter tools and tutorials for web designers and developers
Customize with beautiful Twitter backgrounds or with your personal info and branding
Learn the 7 habits of highly effective Twitterers
See the top Tweeted links at Tweetmeme
8 tips to become successful with Twitter
Reasons to follow or not to follow on Twitter
A great Twitter Tips blog maintained by Darren @ ProBlogger
Save your 140 characters by shortening your url in advance
Friday is #followfriday on Twitter. Send a Tweet with the @username of a fellow Twitter member you think everyone should follow, include a short reason why (maybe with a url to an interesting blog article they posted), and add the #followfriday hash tag at the end. For example, you could recommend me to your followers by sending the following status update: Follow @kikolani for useful blogging and social media tips, photography, and more http://tinyurl.com/cp9dg7 #followfriday. I’d be quite grateful, and will reciprocate a follow message for you to my followers as well. Check out #followfriday’s popularity on search Twitter and see if anyone is sending recommendations about you by adding your username to the #followfriday search.
Also, if you are on Facebook and would like to have only select Tweets become Facebook updates as well, try out the Selective Twitter Status application. Once installed, give it your Twitter username, and add #fb to the end of any Tweet you want as a status update on Facebook. This is especially useful if you want to share informative articles on both Twitter and Facebook, but not your #followfriday Tweets which Facebook users not on Twitter may not understand.
It’s time for a follow up on the growth of the hummingbird babies in the nest outside my office. They’ve developed a lot in the past week, and it is almost time for the babies to leave the nest. I have been taking pictures almost daily, and have a few videos on Youtube, including a short clip of the mother hummingbird feeding her little ones. [More Hummingbird Baby Photos]
One of the trends in blogging are blog tagging, or memes (see “What is a Meme” for more info). While they seem only applicable to personal websites, there are ways to adapt them to almost any site. Next week I will write about those ways, plus how to get some added SEO and link building benefits from a meme. [Ways to Write Great Blogging Meme Responses]
Be sure to check back next week to find out more, and for another Fetchingly Friday post with more great discoveries on the web. Better yet, subscribe via RSS to have them delivered to your favorite subscription reader or by email.
As some of you may have noticed, I have been tweaking the design and functionality of the blog here and there. I’m trying to decrease page load time, and make sure every post is social bookmark and subscription friendly.
I now have a custom Related Post-like area at the end of each article, highlighted in blue. I could never get any of the plugins to pull the articles I wanted with each post, so now I just add related items to articles when necessary. Yes, it’s extra work, especially since I have to go through the archives. But the bonus is it shows up in the RSS feed as well, which my previous plugins didn’t, and I can add a specific number of links to anything related – categories, tags, posts and pages.
Also, I have added some plugins, including the RSS Footer, which puts custom text and a link back to the original post into the bottom of every RSS update (so if anyone tries to hijack my content, the credit to this site will be intact), and Chat Catcher, which notes links to my posts on Twitter and Friendfeed, and adds those as trackbacks in my comments so I will not miss any props given to my articles.
So my question to readers this week: Any tips or suggestions about the changes to layout and functionality? Likes or dislikes?
Looking for some link love? Articles featured in the resources come primarily from people I interact with in the comments, and on the social networks. So comment away (DoFollow, CommentLuv, and KeywordLuv enabled), and join me on the networks below, and if your article/photo/video catches my eye, it may appear in following Fetching Friday posts.