Sunday, September 25, 2011
Transition Time for ScLoHo
This week my afternoon updates that I post at 4:08pm are going to be some "Best of Posts".
This summer when I transitioned from my 8+ years at Summit City Radio to a new career with Cirrus ABS, my co-worker Kevin Mullett challenged me to create something new.
Since 2003 my online persona has been as ScLoHo.
It actually began back in the 1990's when I was looking for a unique email address. Then when I launched my first blog on the Blogger platform I began using ScLoHo as a 1 name identity.
My given name is not unique. Google Scott Howard and you'll come up with the character that Michael J. Fox played in the movie Teenwolf; you'll find doctors, basketball players, crooks, restauranteurs, just about any profession has a "Scott Howard" in it.
ScLoHo is a mashup of my First, Middle and Last names: Scott Louis Howard. And while I have not purposely hid my identity, there are some people who know me only as one or the other.
The challenge that Kevin gave me was to create an online identity as Scott Howard.
My challenge was the transition. This is not a simple task, but there is enough stock in the ScLoHo personal brand that I decided to accept these challenges.
Earlier this year I bought domains for each of my websites and Blogger made it simple to change from their domain to the custom domain without losing any of the "juice" that I had built.
After talking with Kevin, I bought another domain which will be the new home of all of the blog posts that I post starting in October. ScottHoward.me is the domain in case you want to check it out as I am still developing it.
One of the challenges I'm learning is WordPress. Blogger (also known as Blogspot) which has been the home for most of the websites I've been working with, has been very easy to use and even customize.
While WordPress has plenty of options, the Dashboard interface and posting is different from Blogger and it took awhile for this limited geek to learn the differences.
ScottHoward.me already has over 100 posts that I imported from my other sites. In my learning process I discovered how to export then import over 4000 blog posts, out of the 11,000 that I have created in the past 8 years.
For those of you that have been using WordPress all along, you probably haven't had some of the struggles I went through.
I was also looking for a way to organize 4 separate websites into one new site with 5 or 6 categories.
I needed a theme that gave me the option of presenting all the updates, or the updates according to category, in a layout that would be easy to navigate for both you and me.
And I wanted to be sure I was employing Search Engine Optimization along with Social Sharing options. Quite frankly, these were not a big priority until recently when I started working for Cirrus ABS.
Cirrus is the largest website development company in the area and what attracted me to them was their understanding of marketing which is the heart of what I have been doing since 1986. Cirrus developed their own Content Management System which is the heart and engine of their Web platform and makes SEO and Social Sharing very, very easy for our clients.
But I decided to initially build ScottHoward.me on the WordPress platform so I would have that background knowledge of the capabilities and limitations of WordPress which is commonly used by many website developers.
One thing I have learned off the bat is that WordPress is not out of the box friendly to non-professionals the way the Cirrus Small Business Suite is very friendly.
(If you want more info about Cirrus's website solutions, or net-centered marketing, just drop me an email: Scott@ScLoHo.net and mention Cirrus in the subject line.)
One of the ways I have promoted my 4 blogs was social media including Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn. These will continue to be a factor with the new website.
In the past year I have posted 46 updates per week spread over the 4 blogs. There will be a new strategy in place with the new site as I continue to strive for quality over quantity.
I still have lot's of work to do to be ready for the official public launch of ScottHoward.me, but am confident that most will be put in place over the next 7 days.