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How to start a Blog in 30 minutes

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I am not an expert on blogging.  So, my first port of call was to read a book, 'Publish and Prosper – Blogging for your Business' by DL Byron and Steve Broback.  This gives a good overview of the benefits of blogging, how to set it up et cetera.

Here’s a link to DL Byron’s own blog:  http://texturadesign.com/

After reading he book I conducted some research:
• Find the right blogging engine
• Find the right hosting provider
• Decide on what to blog on – if you don’t have anything meaningful to say, stop here
• Theme – what’s this and why are there 5000 of them
• Plug-ins – why are there over 1100 plug-ins
• Search Engine Optimization (SEO) – how do I get noticed

In summary, to work out every possible combination of the above will result in analysis paralysis.  Sometimes, it is good to just put your feet in the water and start.  You will learn as you go along.

So, this is how I did it and this might save you 2 days of research by just getting into the blog sphere:

1) Create an account with Network Solutions
2) Purchase the WordPress Hosted solution.  This will set you back $3.85 a month.  Great package as you can create your own domain name (if available) for free like http://robsilver.org
3) You need to get a WordPress API for some of the plug-ins to work.  Register on WordPress and once you have registered, go to your account tab and note your WordPress API.  This is pretty much your Wordpress Identification.
4) Back to Network Solutions, access your blog for the first time.  This will e-mail you an automatically generated obscure password.  I would recommend immediately logging back into your blog and changing your password to something you can remember.
5) Next, once you are logged on as an admin, choose a theme.  This is the colours, number of columns etc.  You don’t have to use the limited set of themes within Network Solutions.  On WordPress there are thousands of themes to choose from which you can download as a zip file and upload and activate on your WordPress blog site.
6) Next, make it specific for what you want to blog about.  You can do this in the settings tab.  e.g. I made my Blog Title “Microsoft Core Infrastructure Technologies” and gave it a tag line of “Let’s Chat”
7) Then create your categories so that when you blog, it is logically grouped.  As you can see, I put in high level Categories such as Active Directory, System Center etc.  under System Center, you will notice that I placed subcategories too.  This is the most logical categorization for what I want to chat about.
8) Get noticed.  Activate the SEO all in one plug-in.
9) Finally, write something interesting on your blog.  Send me a link so I can see the wonderful things you have to tell the world.
It’s pretty much as simple as that.

Hope this helps,


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