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We Have Smart Homes and Smart Phones – What About Smart Blogs?

Posted By Guest Blogger 5th of October 2015 General 0 Comments

We Have Smart Homes and Smart Phones – What About Smart Blogs?

This is a guest contribution from Larry Alton.

Automation has become such a pervasive feature in our day-to-day lives that we hardly even notice it anymore, and in fact, we even rely on it. From simple things like automatic doors at the grocery store to the elaborate functions on our phones, automation makes life as we know it possible. Still, there are certain facets of our lives where we still expect to have to do much of the work, such as on our blogs.

As it turns out, many tools exist that can help you automate your blogging life and transform your plain old blog into a smart blog. Employing these new tools can help make you a more efficient blogger, increasing your productivity and helping you to use your time wisely. It’s time to get out of the past and embrace the technology of the future. As a blogger at Housing.com points out, “We’re at the cusp of a decade where the impossible is starting to look very possible.” What an exciting moment in our technological evolution!

RSS Feeds and Creative Curating

RSS technology is a blog automation tool that may be more familiar than most. Many of us have personal RSS feeds that show us what’s new on our favorite sites and allow us to access this new content. But on the other side, as a blogger, how can RSS technology help you?

One way to employ RSS technology as a blogger is to create an automated RSS-to-email system. You can set up this system so that it sends updates to subscribers about new blog posts. To keep this from becoming overwhelming, one option is to set up this email so it shares monthly updates linking to your most popular posts. Readers opt in to the email and can then choose what content to read, and you don’t have to lift a finger.

Email Without the Effort

For many bloggers there are specific emailing tasks that have the potential to take up a lot of time. This is particularly true if you run a popular service-oriented blog or offer a submission feature. Whenever the content at hand can be reduced to a form letter, try setting up an autoresponder feature.

Autoresponder services work by sending preset email responses to particular addresses or because a message came from a pre-established site function, such as through your submit button. James McAllister from Help Start My Site uses autoresponders to effectively run his 7-day traffic building course. Because the course is always the same, he can preset the seven days of emails and have an autoresponder send those emails at the appropriate intervals, even setting follow-up emails for the next several weeks and months.

Managing Social Media Overload

If you’re a blogger, odds are good that you are also using a wide range of other social media sites, or at least you should be. In fact, well run social media profiles are absolutely vital, but as these sites proliferate, they can start to feel unwieldy. This is where Hootsuite Pro comes in.

What is Hootsuite Pro? Hootsuite Pro is a multi-function tool for managing all of your social media profiles from one place. Rather than having to move between sites and scroll through pages of updates, Hootsuite Pro brings your Facebook feed and Twitter posts and mentions, as well as any other social media sites you may use, all onto the same page. Even more than that, it allows you to schedule posts and messages in advance. This alone will save you hours of work trying to make your social media pages look appropriately active.

Set Up Submissions

One of the important ways bloggers publicize their content is by submitting posts to other sites that reprint or redirect to this material, such as Storify and Stumbleupon. Since this kind of syndication and submission should be a regular activity, automating this can be a valuable timesaver.

You’ll need some simple tools to do this kind of automating, such as IFTTT or Zapier. IFTTT stands for If This, Then That and it allows you to create a kind of recipe for your blog activities. By creating these recipes, your blog is able to carry out basic operations for you.

IFTTT not only handles submissions, but it can manage some of the same social media tasks that Hootsuite Pro manages. For example, IFTTT can be set up to change your profile picture across all social media sites.

These tools are just the start of an automated blogging future. It’s time to move beyond smart phones, and even smart houses, and embrace smart blog technology.

Larry Alton is an independent business consultant specializing in social media trends, business, and entrepreneurship. Follow him on Twitter and LinkedIn.

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Comments
  1. Hi Larry!

    First of all, thank you so much for mentioning me in this article. And thanks again for making people aware of these options that are available for us bloggers.

    One of my biggest mistakes early on was being afraid to spend money. The truth is that businesses grow so much more quickly when you actually reinvest money back into them.

    Hootsuite Pro was a good example. I was extremely reluctant to spend even the $120 for a years worth of it. Then I realized something. Paying $120 for a tool that would save me so much time was an incredible investment, because I could then use my time to focus on something that would make me way more money.

    These days I try to utilize as many tools as I can to make my job easier, and outsource tasks when it makes sense. All in all, it has not only led to a more profitable business, but it has made my job a heck of a lot easier, and my business a lot less dependent on me as a person.

    Great post and thanks again Larry!

    – James

  2. We also have Voice Dictation that can help with drafting articles without actually typing, just speak into the mic. Combine that with what you’ve mentioned above and blogging is technically getting much easier. But it all comes down to the actual content.

    On another note, we also have Smart Cars. lol

  3. hi Larry,

    This is really great thinking. thanks for sharing it.

    happy blogging

  4. i am regular reader of problogger and all information of this blog is very helpful for me. thanks for sharing this type of meaninful tutorial. i like the heading of this article smart blog really good toughts.

  5. Great Post

  6. Hi Larry,

    James has a fab blog and he’s built a nice little niche through Amazon Kindle because he automates intelligently. Sitting down to write a newsletter a few times weekly would require too much effort. He offers a valuable course. He automates it. Bingo. Smart blogging.

    My blog tag line: retire to a life of island hopping through smart blogging. In essence, achieve a bunch without working much at all. Tools like the mentioned Hootsuite Pro are proven traffic builders if you use them effectively. Learn how to blog intelligently to get more done and to make a greater impact in less time. Before I do any 1 thing, blogging-wise, I think: “Why?” Why would I do it? Is it smart? Am I reaching the max number of people in a minimum amount of time? Am I wasting my time? Or am I blogging intelligently?

    Going through a similar routine inspired me to do blog commenting intelligently, again. I can reach a huge audience here through the PB blog comments field. It’s smart blogging. At least for me. Other folks don’t see the value in bond building and in showing up before a huge, targeted audience, but I certainly do.

    As for tools, I like James (through his comment) didn’t want to spend a few bucks to save time in the past. I learned to make my life easier by paying premiums to free myself. We win no rewards for working ourselves to the bone. That’s dumb blogging. We can craft a freeing, inspired lifestyle by blogging intelligently, and I need to blog smart to enjoy my life in paradise.

    This morning I wrote a bit of my next post, I went to the tienda, bought some food, took a few photos of the local volcano – not something you see or say every day – and now I’m posting this comment. After that, it’s nap time. The tropics do that to you. If I did not blog intelligently I’d be tied to my lap top for 8 to 10 to 12 hours every day, just to stay afloat. No pictures with the volcano if I’m tied to the laptop. No time for a trip to la tienda. Nope. I’d be way too busy of a bee to make this happen. But since I do my best to blog intelligently, using tools and doing all that good, smart, leveraging stuff, I can sustain and grow my business while enjoying the fruits of my play. No labor here. We don’t do that in these parts.

    Tools are cool if you use them intelligently and you have shared some gems with us. Auto responder courses rock, as do social sharing tools. For me, that’s tweet deck all the day with some social oomph mixed in. Any tool that helps you to connect with targeted, interested folks in a few minutes each day works well for me. Thin leveraging: pay or use free tools that free up your sked. If you can reach a max amount of targeted folks in a minimum amount of time you can spend more time offline, enjoying your internet lifestyle, or simply enjoying the fruits of your blogging.

    Gotta go. Nap time has arrived.

    Thanks for the sensational read Mike. Keep up the great work.

    Ryan

  7. Thanks for the info. Super helpful for someone who is starting out in the blogging world.

  8. I usually using GReader for Android to get fresh news content

  9. Hi Larry,

    Thanks for your tips on blogging,your site really helps me as I’m new into this.

  10. This one is really great, I really want to see a future where we have shape shifting blogs which change according to user’s needs and what they really want to see. Am I asking for too much! :P

  11. Thanks a lot Larry.I believe the blog still a good way to share your idea although there are fb,twitter etc.Smart blog will make it more efficient.

  12. Managing all my social profiles from one place? I never knew this is possible. Thanks Larry.

  13. His Larry ,
    Because of this post , I just learnt something I never knew was possible: managing all my social networks from one place.

  14. An inspiring post, Larry!

    I totally agree with you. Automation is everywhere. If we understand the broader concept of automation, we can consider its potential benefits and be more organized and technological.

    I liked the 1st and 3rd part of your blog. RSS technology and social media hootsuite pro seem great tools for blog automation. RSS will allow you to send updates to subscribers.Thus, I am going to implement these while designing blogs for my startup concern.

    Thanks for sharing.

  15. this is really a very informative post, in today’s busy agenda pre- scheduling is very important. thanks for sharing..

  16. Smart Blogs! Sounds interesting. You mentioned some useful topics on your post. It’s helpful for me. Thank you for your wonderful thinking.

  17. Your title is truly catchy.Informative,to the mark and scheduling is what I am going to keep in mind.Thanx

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