One of the biggest advantages that the web offers is the relative
ease of developing tools catering to the needs of a particular
user set. For every ten people who want to perform a specific
task, there will be ten ways for them to do it because each will
have ten different needs to address. Blogging software is an
excellent example of this phenomenon as there have been numerous
blogging programs that have arisen since the advent of
Livejournal in the late 1990s.
Understanding a few of the more common blog software programs can
help any blogger make an informed choice about their particular
needs and get their message out in the most efficient way.
Livejournal is the earliest, albeit not the simplest, of the blog
creation programs introduced. It began as an early form of social
media networking software; the emphasis was on friends sharing
their journals online with one another. As such, it has a
multitude of features aimed at creating a mutually-supporting
network of watchers and friends.
There are groups that can be joined and monitored for content
relating to the blog’s interest, which is a key tool in
generating involved commentary. Similarly, it is easy to
subscribe to specific blogs and monitor them on the “friends”
list for the same kind of content. The Livejournal software also
is used by a number of blogs, such as Deadjournal and
Insanejournal, and was used by Greatestjournal before GJ went
under. Thus, a great many people already are familiar with its
functionality and there is a large user base to tap into.
On the other hand, it isn’t the simplest system to figure out,
with some friends functionality buried under several layers of
interface. Additionally, it suffers from a certain juvenile
reputation, being firmly associated with high school students in
many minds. The audience is still big, but it has its limits.
Blogger is one of the most commonly used blogging programs out
there. It has the advantages of being very simple and more or
less omnipresent. It’s become so common to use that the
.blogspot portion of a url has become inextricably associated
with blogs of all types, be they serious or more casual in
The simplicity of Blogger is its strongest advantage. It doesn’t
bury the user in options, making the process of setting up and
getting a blog moving very easy. Blogs can be tagged and
disseminated on short notice, and there are a number of templates
available to customize a blog’s appearance.
On the other hand, the simplicity of the interface is a slightly
shallow concept. Blogs can be tagged, but they can’t be
categorized within the blog itself. This makes organizing a
Blogger blog a bit difficult. Going further, templates cannot be
edited easily — doing so requires CSS and HTML knowledge. Any
business hiring a blog writer to use the Blogger software will
need to stipulate that CSS and HTML editing knowledge are a must
WordPress is growing in popularity as a blog platform because it
offers a compromise between simple but limited options like
Blogger and the more robust yet incredibly complicated options
such as Movable Type. WordPress is essentially a word processor
built into a publishing package.
A whole slate of editing options are available for writing the
blog itself, such as font and formatting adjustments, and the
option to edit in visual style or to go right to the HTML if the
blog writer is comfortable with that. There are options to make a
quick post with very little adjustment as well as options to make
a more complex offering with jumpcuts, embedded video and
elaborate pictures. Also, the templates can be adjusted without
knowledge of HTML, allowing for much more customization.
This is an unusual entry into the software. It is very well known
and incredibly powerful for people who know what they’re doing.
However, it is also notoriously difficult to install properly and
even harder to use to its full effect. MT offers many options for
customization, but then so does being able to program in computer
languages such as HTML and C++. This is an option not for the
beginner, but for someone already experienced with blogging and
computer language in general who wants full control of every
aspect of his or her blogging experience.
This is a bit of a trick in that it isn’t explicitly a blogging
software program. Instead, some users do elect to simply make
posts directly onto their front page using the basic text
software of their site. This has a certain simplicity to it,
minimizing the need for complicated installs. However, it also
has an unfinished look about it, and severely limits the options
of what can be accomplished, and as such is an option more to be
avoided than embraced.
As a final note, it is fairly easy to get a hold of these
blogging programs. Before committing to any one of them, a user
should create a “dummy” account for each and try a few sample
posts to see how they like working with the software. This will
make the entire process a bit more complicated up front, but will
ensure that the company gets the tool it most needs.
About The Author:
Enzo F. Cesario is an online branding specialist
and co-founder of Brandsplat, a digital content
agency. Brandsplat creates blogs, articles, videos
and social media in the “voice” of our client’s
brand. It makes sites more findable and brands more
recognizable. For the free Brandcasting Report go to
http://www.BrandSplat.com/ or visit our blog at
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