Ways to Promote your Blog

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Ways to Promote your Blog

Ways to Promote your Blog

RSS Feeds, Atom Feeds - What is a "Feed"?

Feeds are used by the Blogging community to share recent entries with each other and with the general public and are essentially meant for readers who want to follow a particular Blog or for other Blog owners who want to reflect the contents of other Blogs on their own Blogs. Feeds can be used to display headlines/ titles with or without a short summary.

Feeds are small text files which provide information about the content on a website. Whenever the content on a Blog is updated or new content is added, the text file gets updated accordingly. Applications known as Feed aggregators or the Feed readers keep checking on these text files for changes. When someone subscribes to a feed he is notified of the new content by these aggregators and can then access the Blog. Before the advent of feeds, one usually bookmarked a Blog he/she wanted to follow in the Browser and had to keep checking the Blog for new content. Not so any more. With feeds the Blog you like lets you know that it has new content. This way one does not need to keep going to favourite Blogs to check whether any new content is available, which is required in the case of bookmarking favourite Blogs.

Presently two standard feeds are most commonly used, RSS and Atom. Both the formats serve the same purpose of syndicating feeds to subscribers.

Types of Feeds - Atom Feed and RSS Feed

RSS Feed stands for Really Simple Syndication and was the first format to be used for creating and distributing feeds. However, there were many who felt that the RSS family of format was deficient in certain areas, and that paved the way for the development of a new standard in feeds and that was the Atom feed. Essentially both the formats are the same and serve the same purpose, that of fetching updated/new content from your favourite website or Blog and present it to you in a readable format.

The differences in the two formats are mainly technical. RSS mainly supports plain text and HTML while Atom also allows other formats like XML, XHTML, etc. Atom is more flexible than RSS and more secure. It also has an auto discovery facility that allows users to find and subscribe to feeds. RSS format has a disadvantage in the sense that the design has been frozen to provide stability to the application and hence further development is not possible. All new research, therefore, will be concentrating either on a different technology or similar technology under a different name.

RSS is still the favoured format of many since it has been integrated into certain Blogging platforms like Wordpress. When Atom was initially released there was the problem of readers not being able to syndicate the Atom feeds. However, these days all the feed readers or aggregators are capable of reading both RSS and Atom formats and hence it is no longer a problem.

When you are using a feed on your website keep the following in mind:

·          Make sure you have automated pinging set up, so that you proactively notify all the directory services as soon as your post goes up.

·          Publish your full content in the field. Don't provide a snippet and ask people to click through. Make it easier for them to read your content, and you will reap re- wards from that effort.

·<span style="\"font-size:" 7pt;="" font-family:="" \'times="" new="" roman\';\"="">         </span><!--{cke_protected}%3C!%2D%2D%5Bendif%5D%2D%2D%3E--><span lang="\"EN-US\"">Unless you have a specific reason for supporting multiple feed formats, don't. Make life simpler on your users and support one. </span></p> <p class="\"MsoNormal\""> <span lang="\"EN-US\"">Blogging software has an in-built feature of providing Site Feeds. As explained in the BIogger Settings you can either choose a short feed or a full feed for your Blog. Every Blog has either the Atom Feed or the RSS (Really Simple Syndication) feed option available on the pages. The Blogger, which we are using, has an Atom Feed link that will appear at the bottom of its page that can be used to promote your Blogs. It says "Subscribe to: Posts (Atom)". In case you do not see the feed link then you may have to check the configuration of the Site Feed tab under settings. </span></p> <p class="\"MsoNormal\""> <span lang="\"EN-US\"">If you right click on this "Subscribe to: Posts (Atom)" button and then on "copy link location", you will get the link to your feed page that will look like this: <u>http://kanwarpriya.blogspot. com/feeds/posts/default.</u> This is the link that your subscribers or readers will copy on their Blogs or websites in order to get a live feed from your Blog. They will now be able to keep track of all the fresh posts that you make without having to actually come to your Blog. This is a great way to advertise your fresh content. Therefore, you need to make sure that the content you post on your Blog should be interesting enough to attract readers to your Blog and have them wanting to subscribe to your Blog. </span></p> <p class="\"MsoNormal\""> <span lang="\"EN-US\"">It is very easy to identify a RSS Feed Button at the bottom of any web page. Look for a square orange button with white lines as can be seen circled at the top left side of the page. (This is the Feed Page of the Blogger). In most websites or Blogs it can be found at the bottom left side of the page. As can be seen in the figure, the feed page shows the latest content posted on your Blog. The name of your Blog appears at the top with the link to your latest post below it. </span></p> <p class="\"MsoNormal\""> <span lang="\"EN-US\"">So how does it work? Well, if your readers like your Blog and would like to track your posts then the best way to do so will be to take your Blog RSS feed and put it on their own website or Blog. 'the RSS feed automatically updates itself whenever you make a fresh post. Whenever the subscribers visit their own Blog, they would also be able to see your feed, which will tell them if there is any new content. </span></p> <p class="\"MsoNormal\""> <span lang="\"EN-US\"">You can also use your RSS feed to promote your Blog by putting the FeedBurner feed in all your other Blogs or websites (In case you have more than one) as well as the Social Networking Sites that you join. </span></p> <p>  </p> <p class="\"MsoNormal\""> <span lang="\"EN-US\"">The RSS feed is used to create a FeedBurner Feed or a Widget for Your Blog that you can use in any other website or Blogs Or pages that can carry HTML code. </span></p><p></p>



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