You can host as many blogs as you want on your NationBuilder websites without any third-party software. This HOWTO will cover how to create a blog and maintain it.
Table of Contents
Create a blog
To create a new blog, navigate to Websites > [Site Name] > New page.
1. Type the name of your blog. The slug for your blog will auto-populate based on the name you type - the slug can be changed.
2. Select blog as the page type.
3. Scroll down to the bottom of the page and decide whether to include the blog in the top nav or supporter nav of your site.
4. Click Create Page . Typically, you'll want to include the blog in the top navigation.
To start a new blog post, go to Posts & subpages > New post. First, type a headline for the post. A slug will auto-populate based on the headline you give the post. Remember, you can update the slug. Click Create blog post to begin drafting.
You'll be taken to the content editor for your blog post page. You can divide content between the "Before the flip" and "After the flip" editors so that your main blog page isn't over-run by one or two long blog posts. Anything after the flip will appear with a "Read More" link. Generally, it makes sense to have at least one paragraph of text before the flip.
You can type/insert content directly into each of the boxes using a variety of tools.
Including an image or video clip before the flip can also help expand visitor's engagement with your blog. With our Embed.ly integration, all you need to do is enter the URL for a YouTube video or other online content on its own line and click the button. A preview of the content included via Embed.ly will appear below the content editors.
Note: If you are using a NationBuilder public theme, the Embed.ly integration works across all themes. However, the Publish theme prevents images placed "Before the flip" from appearing on the homepage to keep the page design in tact. If you are using the Verve theme, it is designed to show any attachment included "Before the flip" as a thumbnail image, stripping out the Embed.ly html.
To add an image to the post, you can click on the Insert/Edit Image button in the content editor.
You can preview how your content will display on your live website using the Preview option. When you're satisfied with your entry, click the Publish button.
If you're setting up a new blog, be sure to follow the breadcrumbs at the top of the page to get back to the blog page to click the Publish button. You can also change the status of the blog from the Settings > Page settings area. You can also add tags here, allow comments, and control other settings.
Tip: Updating the default facebook post/tweet for a blog post from Settings > Social Media and uploading a thumbnail image in that area can be particularly helpful in encouraging people to share your content.
Tips for maintaining an active blog
- Blogs are hugely important for improving the frequency your website will turn up on search engines like Google. The more posts you have, the more keywords you are feeding search engines, increasing the likelihood your post will be offered as a result.
- The quality of your posts is important. The better your post, the more likely another website will link to it. The more incoming links that exist for a blog post, the higher your post will rank on search results.
- Include a prominent link to the RSS feed near the top of your blog. Most people don't actually visit the blog page to check for new updates. Instead, they subscribe to RSS feeds to alert them when a new post is made.
- Be sure to promote your posts via social media, especially on your organization's Twitter account. You can automatically feed your posts to Twitter using services like Twitter Feed. Some people use Twitter instead of RSS to be updated on new posts.
- Embed pictures and videos in your blog posts whenever possible. You want to avoid your blog turning into a wall of text, and embedding relevant pictures and videos will greatly help in spicing it up.
- Use links to other sites liberally in your posts. Other websites and blogs may return the favor in the future. Linking to sources of information contained in your blog post also increases your credibility.