5 Ways to Blog From Your Mobile Device

social media how toDo you need to blog while on the go?

Would you like to have the ability to blog from your mobile device?

In this article, I’ll show you what you need to run your blog from your mobile device.

Why Blog From a Mobile Device?

OK, so you’re not going to build a robust blog entirely on mobile.

But once you’ve launched your blog using a platform like WordPress, a computer is no longer required to continue posting, engaging and building your brand online.

In today’s mobile, 140-character world, more readers prefer their content in bite-sized chunks—which makes quick-hit and multimedia posts from a mobile device ideal in some cases.

“Every day you have to be communicating; that’s the important thing,” said rock star video blogger Gary Vaynerchuk, when asked what today’s businesses are lacking online. “Long-form blogging was the big thing in years back. Microblogging is now the big thing. It’s changed the dynamics a bit.”

And microblogging doesn’t have to be just a Twitter thing. Many new WordPress themes have custom content types baked into the editor and design for short blurbs, photos and even asides.

In fact, a standardized list of these “short-form” post formats has been recognized since WordPress 3.1, and bloggers can now customize their themes around these specific, shorter-than-normal posts. That standard list of post formats includes Aside, Audio, Chat, Gallery, Link, Quote, Status and Video.

wordpress-post-formats

WordPress makes it easy to publish short-form content with those callouts on the content management side of things. It’s encouraging Google and other search engines to become more flexible when it comes to ranking quality content, no matter how many words the body area contains.

You’d be hard-pressed nowadays to find any official Google documentation that suggests minimum word counts for blog posts. As long as you do your best to create unique, resourceful content that provides value to search results, you’re going to rank well in search.

That, combined with the unprecedented adoption of mobile, makes posting to a blog from a mobile device easier and more valuable than ever. This means bloggers no longer have to remain chained to a desktop to stand out online.

#1: Mobile Blogging Apps

In the mobile world, “note”-worthy apps such as Evernote get a lot of the attention. And while cloud-based note-taking apps are a huge leap forward in terms of mobile content development, I prefer to cut out the middleware and publish straight from the app I’m writing in.

With that approach in mind, my top three mobile blogging apps right now are:

  • WordPress for iOS: (WordPress also has apps for five additional mobile platforms): The WordPress app is amazing because it streamlines the bloated desktop-publishing process and lets you simply publish text, photos and video straight from your device. The only drawback is formatting text and HTML can be a pain, so save yourself the headache and keep your copy simple when blogging from a mobile device.
  • CoveritLive: I’ll focus on event marketing in a bit, but whenever I’m blogging an event and want to collaborate with others, there’s no better app than CoveritLive, which essentially embeds a live chat into your blog.
  • Quicklytics: In terms of blog stats, I rely on Quicklytics to track Google Analytics on all of the blogs in my portfolio. So if a topic on a blog starts going gangbusters, I know about it at the swipe of a thumb and can complement that topic with a related post or make any necessary tweaks from my handy-dandy WordPress app.

But you don’t even need an app to push quality mobile content to your blog. Read more below.

#2: Mobile Blogging by Email

One of my favorite mobile blogging approaches is to send posts to my site via email.

With some tweaks to your admin settings, you can publish via email to your WordPress blog. WordPress gives you a unique address to email posts to, so be sure to keep that email address secret to avoid spam hitting your site. In terms of posting, the title of the post goes in your email subject line; the body text goes in the body of the email.

inaccurate-einstein-quote

Post a blog by email from your mobile device.

Hit Send, and your post will get published as soon as the email hits your web server.

#3: Photo Blogging With Flickr

While emailing posts can be convenient, attaching and getting multimedia to display properly on your blog can be challenging.

That’s where a photo portfolio site like Flickr can come in handy, allowing you to kill two birds with one email send: double-publishing mobile photos to a photo-sharing service like Flickr, as well as to your own blog.

The Flickr publish-by-email feature is great for review posts, where photos often carry the post.

wordpress-post-formats

Use Flickr to publish photos from your mobile device to your blog.

And if you use an automated feed service such as Feedburner to syndicate your blog to your social networks, those six keystrokes can also generate a tweet and Facebook post that spread the word and kick off the link-building process for you automagically. All in 30 seconds or less!

 #4: Video Blogging via Mobile

Video blogging isn’t quite as quick as photo blogging via mobile, because it takes more time to process videos, but it’s become a lot easier thanks to the evolution of WordPress and YouTube.

As we know, the WordPress app allows video uploads straight from your phone, but did you know WordPress allows you to embed a YouTube video by simply pasting the YouTube URL into your blog editor? That means a video blog can be published via mobile in these easy steps:

  • Upload your mobile video from your gallery to YouTube, using default sharing functionality from your iPhone gallery.
  • Copy the YouTube URL once it’s published.
  • Paste the URL in the body of your next blog post.

A local surf shop recently followed this model, and was able to shoot and publish a viral Surfing Sasquatch video and photo gallery all in the same day using nothing more than iPhones and an iPad. They also edited the video on their iPad equipped with iMovie, which is another great, easy-to-use video editing app worth picking up.

#5: Event Blogging

CoveritLive allows multiple bloggers to collaborate on a live blog from anywhere in the world. You can even post to the live blog via Twitter; again, killing two birds with one iPhone.

Using my iPhone, I was even able to live blog while kayaking San Francisco’s McCovey Cove during the 2012 World Series. That’s right, blogging while kayaking—at night—at the World Series; something that would have been unfathomable prior to the advent of the smartphone.

wordpress-post-formats

Blogging from a mobile device opens new possibilities today.

And because I was one of the only sportswriters who paddled out into the cove for Game 2, my live blog was picked up by everyone from Deadspin to the Detroit Free Press and was one of my most popular posts ever.

Conclusion

As you can see, today you can build a blog via your mobile device.

Use these tips to build a blog where you only share short-form content, or to add short-form content to keep your business blog active while you are away from your desk.

Keep in mind that these mobile blogging options may help you publish content faster than your competition or larger mainstream sites. For example, this can help you be the first to cover breaking news at events and increase your visibility within your industry.

What do you think? Have you used your mobile device to blog? What have been your challenges and successes? Please share your comments below.

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About the Author, Brian Milne

Brian Milne is founder of the Hyped Blog Networks and Meadows Interactive, providing marketing services to four Top 1,000 websites. Connect with him on Twitter @BMilneSLO. Other posts by »




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  • Kimberly Evans-Handy

    I love the idea of microblogging. I will give it a try.

  • http://indispensablemarketing.com/ Patrick McFadden

    The most valuable point to me is when you said, “Use these tips to build a blog where you ONLY share short-form content, or to add short-form content.”

    The big confusion or mishandling of this type of blogging is the wrong content publishing. Using long-form content for a short-form marketing tactic.

  • Ian Harrold

    Cool post. I’ve been using Pressgram for publishing image posts to my WordPress powered blog since it came out a few months back too…it works great!

  • BMilneSLO

    Thanks for the kind words on the post. Yeah, there are some great new apps emerging. WordPress’ own mobile app has also made posting to your blog a more streamlined process, which is nice. I welcome your thoughts here on what other mobile apps you like to leverage for mobile blogging. I know there are some resourceful ones in the works for 2014 as well.

  • Dorien Morin-van Dam

    So timely! As I spend three weeks at home and mobile with my kids over the holidays, I got very little time behind my computer, but did always have access to my iPhone! This is just what I need to progress as my blogging stalls each time the kids are in the home-office. Now I can blog ‘from the road’ so to speak. I am always looking for new ways to use my phone and be more productive during my ‘mommy hours’. Thanks Brian!

  • http://navneetsau.com/ NavNeet Sau

    Great ideas to keep blogging through mobile devices, but text formatting and HTML through WordPress IOS can be very disappointing because formatting is very essential to make a professional blog.

  • BMilneSLO

    Thanks Dorien. As a father of 3, I definitely feel you. Anything we can do to make updating our sites with fresh content is key nowadays. Good luck in the new year!

  • BMilneSLO

    That’s true. Coding on a phone, or a tablet for that matter, is still a pain in most cases. There are some simple buttons for formatting on a lot of apps, but they leave something to be desired … and I think this is an area where there is room for lots of improvement this year in terms of mobile publishing. We’ll see where the different app makers take the platforms, but, in the meantime, I try to focus on those shorter posts with multimedia attachments to help keep the formatting to a minimum.

  • http://increaseyoursocialreach.com/ Sofia

    I like the idea of blogging from your mobile as I am constantly on mine. What I would like to know is if this apps are also applicable on an android phone…or is that a topic for another post? Does anybody has any tips for blogging apps on android? Your thoughts are appreciated. Thanks. Sofia

  • http://www.foodassault.com/ Trent Carpenter

    Great post Brian. I’ve always been “on the fence” when it comes to using Flickr to host your images within your blog.

    Yes it helps reduce your bandwidth not needing to host your own images and also much better logistically if you move hosts however what happens if something happens to Flickr one day and all your images are gone?

    What are your thoughts on this?

  • http://www.youtube.com/user/beentheredumpedthat Christy Murphy

    I use ManageWP for my sites on my desktop, and I’ve just recently found their app works nicely to post from my phone. For longer posts, I use the Dragon app to dictate and then copy and paste it into the ManageWP app.

  • http://www.bloggingfromparadise.com/ Ryan Biddulph

    Since snagging my Christmas present tablet – thanks Santa – I have become big on video blogging. Shoot it in HD, upload via YT or G Plus immediately and publish to my blog. Super helpful post Brian!

  • http://www.it-sales-leads.com/ Barbara Mckinney

    A lot of people are saying that 2014 is all about mobile. If you are not using this platform in creating content and to engage to your customers,you are missing a big opportunity in your marketing strategy.

  • BMilneSLO

    Hey Sofia, there’s an Android version of the WordPress app: http://android.wordpress.org/ Also, the email your post to your blog would work from either mobile platform.

  • BMilneSLO

    Hey Trent, yeah, it’s always a little bit of a gamble when it comes to using third party services. You could always just email directly to your blog using WordPress’ built in email to publish functionality. I, personally, don’t think Flickr is going anywhere, and I’ve actually seen sites that have seen their PR jump quicker when posting images on Flickr and getting the links back. Plus it can’t hurt to reverse publish your content from a new site to a third-party community that already gets a lot of traffic already, so keep that in mind.

    That again, I’m sure the same has been said about some of the other services that have since shuttered … i.e. Ning, triim, Yahoo! 360°, Yahoo! Briefcase, Jubii, Windows Live Events, SplashCast … All gone. So the safe answer is always to publish to a domain you control.

    At the same time, go with your gut and use the services you feel most comfortable with and believe are future proof. If those services close, they usually give you an opportunity to back up all your work and import it onto your site, so keep that in mind too.

  • http://www.EntrepreneurOnFire.com/ John Lee Dumas

    I agree that one of the downsides of mobile blogging is the formatting of
    text because that’s so important when it comes to writing blogs. Love
    the idea of video blogging: an easy way to create a personal interaction
    with your audience. Great post Brian – thank you!

  • http://esecaucus.com/ Carl Dispoto

    I’ve been considering using Blogsy to start blogging from my iPad mini as I really dislike the functionality of the WordPress iPad app. Has anyone use Blogsy successfully? Seems to get great reviews.

  • http://kovalenkomarketing.com/ Viktor Kovalenko

    Thanks. This is very valuable analysis.

  • Michael Bian

    Great point and insights.

  • http://increaseyoursocialreach.com/ Sofia

    Thanks Brian
    I’ve installed it on my mobile and get familiar with it and definitely use it on the go. Sofia

  • Juanita Dailey

    Great content! I like the idea of microblogging as well. I call it speed blogging. LOL. I do however think there still is a place for the longform blogging and that it will be a mix of the two because sometimes you just can say it all in a short blog post.

  • Juanita Dailey

    Haven’t heard of Pressgram. Is that a WordPress plug-in?

  • BMilneSLO

    Thanks Juanita. Great call. That’s one thing I don’t want to get lost in this piece: the importance of longform content. Just look at Social Media Examiner. Most of the posts here are longer, resourceful articles with multiple sources, multimedia, etc. …
    That said, sometimes you just don’t have time for longer posts. You’re on the go. Or, your readers are in the same boat and don’t have time to read an epic post all the time. And sometimes, it’s just easier for everyone to post a short blurb, video or image (like when you’re at a World Series game blogging from your kayak!). A healthy mix is definitely the right approach. Here’s to mixing it up in 2014!

  • Ian Harrold

    It’s an iOS app that feels a lot like Instagram in that it’s an image sharing social media app…but you can also publish the images you post on Pressgram to a WordPress powered blog at the same time! There is a plug-in you can get for more fine controls, but it isn’t mandatory. Check it out :)

  • Jennifer

    Hi! Great post! How do you manage pictures when blogging by email?

  • http://kenkorbel.com/ Kenneth Korbel

    As a new blogger trying to decide on a niche, I found your ideas helpful and your links relevant. Thanks for putting this together.

  • http://kenkorbel.com/ Kenneth Korbel

    As a new blogger trying to decide on a niche, I found your ideas helpful and your links relevant. Thanks for putting this together.

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  • http://www.myrlandmarketing.com/ Nancy Myrland | Marketing & So

    Hi Ryan, you can post your video that has been uploaded to G+ to your blog? Remind me how this can be done…thanks!

  • http://www.myrlandmarketing.com/ Nancy Myrland | Marketing & So

    @BMilneSLO:disqus Great post about mobile blogging on SMExaminer! I definitely want to crank up my use of these tools for a conference I will attend in April, allowing me to post frequent updates about sessions…thanks!

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  • http://www.bloggingfromparadise.com/ Ryan Biddulph

    Great stuff!

    Learning how to do this with my tablet.

    RB









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