Techno Granny, Word Press Is
Not Just for Blogging!
Time: 11/14/2011 10:00 AM EST
Episode Notes: Did you know there are two systems of Word Press? WordPress.com and WordPress.org............... One is an open source blogging software and the other, well listen in to find out as: Brian David O'Keefe, the Web Strategy Coach Explains the Difference and all the features and benefits of both
Monday, November 14, 2011
TechnoGrannyShow, WordPress, Not Just for Blogging
Web Strategy Coach, Brian David O'Keefe
Do you have a web strategy?Every business needs one. Like a budget or a business plan, you need to be intentional about your online presence. If you’re not, you may be squandering some great opportunities.
Brian David O’Keefe helps people make business sense of the Web. Brian coaches businesses and thought leaders on using the dynamic and do-it-yourself nature of the WordPress platform to extend their reach online.
Brian has always loved to clean up and organize things. It’s sometimes a curse for him, but it’s great for you!After working as a software engineer for 22 years, Brian left the corporate world in 2010 to focus on helping small businesses make greater use of the Web. He has a BS degree in Computer Science from Penn State, and has worked for IBM, Legent (acquired by Computer Associates), Transarc (acquired by IBM), and Spinnaker Networks (acquired by NetApp). He’s also done a lot of technical writing, taking complex technology concepts and making them understandable to people unfamiliar with those technologies.
Here’s what some others have said about Brian’s work:
“Brian has revamped my website, making it more current and easier to use. He was delightful to work with: flexible, knowledgeable, and patient. I like his combination of setting up my website and social media as well as showing me how to maintain it and make changes. I find it invaluable that he continues to offer tips and information and remains a great resource.” – Laura C.
“I have a new customer that chose my hair salon because she thought our website was nicer and cleaner than those of the other hair salons in our area. Brian understood what I wanted my website to do for my business, and his suggestions were right on. And Facebook is now one of the primary ways that we communicate with our customers.”– Michael C.
“Brian was amazing as he walked with me through the website creation process, helping me understand what we were doing as he helped give me direction and focus, making the final product incredible.” - Brian T.
Talking Points – WordPress
· What is WordPress?
o WordPress is free software that was developed primarily as a blogging platform, and is a fantastic platform for web sites in general, not just for blogs. It was released in 2003, and has become the most popular content management system (CMS) in use on the Internet. The beauty of it is that (1) it’s free, (2) it allows you to administer your web site (and publish new material) directly on the Web without the need for other web development software, and (3) it allows non-techies to create and maintain their own web sites with relative ease. Also, just as the iPhone has spawned a whole industry of app development, WordPress has spawned an entirely new category of software/web businesses that develop WordPress “themes” and “plugins.”
· What are “themes” and “plugins?”
o A “theme” is akin to a template and is the look and feel and layout of a web site. A “plugin” is a code module that performs a particular function for a web site. WordPress stores the data of a web site in a database that is separate from the theme and the plugins of the web site. This data includes the text and graphics of web pages and blog posts. Because of this, you can take a web site that has pages of information and years of blog posts, and change the theme with the click of a button. The entire look changes, but the data is the same. Likewise, you can download and install plugins to add specific functionality to your web site, like say, to add an event management system or to create your own social network. There are thousands of free themes and plugins, and there are many “premium” themes and plugins that you have to pay for, but which usually come with ongoing support from the developers.
· What’s the difference between WordPress.com and WordPress.org?
o WordPress.com is a site that allows people to set up free WordPress web sites that are hosted by WordPress (for free) and that have wordpress.com domains (e.g., brianokeefe.wordpress.com). WordPress.org is the place to download the software to then install to a hosting area that you already have (usually paid) and that has a domain that you buy (paid). WordPress.com allows you to set up a site with no cost, but is very limited in the “themes” that you can use (how customizable it is). Using the WordPress code from WordPress.org requires you to do more things on your own, but also allows for total customization.
· How long would it take a newbie to get a web site up and running?
o On WordPress.com, it only takes a few minutes to register and get started publishing information if you’re happy with the default theme. And within another few minutes you can do more customizations. Using WordPressGoDaddy or BlueHost, and then your customization options are much greater.
· Why would a business even want to maintain its own web site?
o As with business functions like accounting, bookkeeping, or marketing, every business needs to decide what it’s worth to them to do something themselves versus hiring or contracting with a professional. Making small changes to a web site, like changing an interest rate or an employee bio are simple with a platform like WordPress, and someone doesn’t need to be an IT professional to do it, so it may be worth doing that yourself. Designing or redesigning a web site is probably not something that most people should worry about. For example, a solopreneur should focus on the core of their business, not on learning how to make a neon sign for their business. The same holds true for many aspects of a web site. It may be better to pay someone for a few days of their time than for you to take two weeks away from your business to learn how to do something that you may never have to do again.