October 28, 2011 Leave a comment
With the advent of smartphones and tablet computing, a new wave of blogging is out there for people to experience, mobile blogging. This is important to bloggers especially because it means they can do full blog posts from places where they were, not so long ago, limited to Facebook and Twitter posts. Being a blogger means you need to be able to cover important happenings in whatever field you work in, as it is happening so you can have articles available for your readers on the fly. Well, depending on where your blog is hosted, there are several apps out there that make mobile blogging not just possible, but fairly simple.
Micro-Blogging: Micro-Blogging is blogging, but on a smaller level. Different micro-blogging services provide different restrictions, but the one I’m going to use for this example is a site that is fairly me to the scene called Chime.In. Chime.In was just launched about a week before the date of this post being published, and has been described as Twitter with more characters and a built-in voting system that is similar to Reddit. You are limited to 2000 characters within your post, and can add photos and videos to the post. This is called micro-blogging because you do have a limited number of characters. I can see Chime.In being very useful for a band that would want to keep a tour blog or studio blog. The way I use it, keeping in mind that I work, primarily, in the world hardcore and metal music, is for doing show reviews while I’m at the show. The time between bands would give you enough time to tap a short post about each band, if you wish. I use it to highlight a local opening acts that play on major tours. Take a picture or short video of the band and throw up a quick review of what your impression of the band was. Click here to see a post I did like this on my Chime.In page.
This could also be utilized by a business that just has a quick update to throw out there rather than taking the time to create an entire blog, but Twitter won’t allow enough detail. For example, I use Chime.In for posting what my plans for the week are so people can know what to expect out of me that week. (Here’s an example of that) Something like that is too long for Twitter, but wouldn’t necessitate an entire blog post on my blog.
Tumblr: Tumblr is a blogging service that allows you to make a, somewhat, customizable blog. It works great for podcasts, because you can post links to your audio file and have it stream directly from your blog. You can customize your RSS feed address and have it re-route to a Feedburner feed, and you can have it automatically post to your Facebook and/or Twitter pages.
WordPress: WordPress is a very popular blogging service that has more options for customizing your blog, whether you use the free service, or the self-hosted service. The only downside to a free WordPress blog, is that WordPress does not allow ads to be placed on the blog, should that be something you are looking at. However, if you are a business, chances are you aren’t going to have a bunch of ads on your site. WordPress has announced that they are going to start allowing ads, but I’m not sure when that is going to take effect. WordPress also allows you to stream an audio file by embedding the file’s URL, but you have to know a little bit of shortcode to do it.
When it comes to mobile blogging, these are the three that I suggest. I included a screen capture from my iPhone so you could see that I have them and that they are available. All apps are free for both iOS and Android devices, and the apps are very functional for both. I had an Android before I got my iPhone, and had the apps on it as well. I really like the WordPress app, because it allows you to post to self-hosted blogs, as well as free blogs. You have to allow the app access on your blog’s server, but that is fairly easy to access.
Another thing I want to point out about these services, is that you can start blogging on the cheap! Chime.In, Tumblr and WordPress all offer free blogs! Any business, organization or individual can purchase any .com domain name, and just re-route it to their free blog, if they choose. The upside to this is that any start-up, band, podcast or individual can expand their web presence and have a pretty professional looking website for no cost at all! When integrated with the proper social networks, and someone who is willing to embrace a DIY mentality, blogging can be a very powerful tool. The mobile apps are great for the business person that is on the run, and doesn’t have the time to commit to sitting behind a computer for a long period of time.
It is really helpful to a person that has a long commute or downtime. Again, keep in mind that for this example, I am a music blogger. Most of my job is going to concerts to get interviews with various bands or to review live shows. More often than not, that means I have to go out-of-town. So I have an hour and a half drive/ride to and from the show. I also have plenty of time while I’m at the show, because I am usually there to work with one or two of the four or five bands. While the bands that I’m there to cover are on stage, I watch the show. When they’re not on stage, I can sit down in the bar and start working on a new post. By the time I get home, I just have to add a picture or two, maybe a video, and do a little editing and checking for errors, and the job is mostly done before I get home.
Make sure you check out Alloy Matt’s personal blog or his various social pages!