WordPress Developers and Users - Bridging The GapI wrote a post for Torque Mag ( an excellent WordPress news resource ) recently on the nature of the relationship between WordPress developers – those who create themes and plugins, and users of WordPress – those regular folks who have no interest in code and just want to create and manage their sites. As a WordPress trainer, mini-developer and user, on a daily basis I’m either taking on one of those roles, or I’m witnessing first hand how they interact. Oftentimes there’s miscommunication and misunderstandings. Ever bought a theme convinced it was going to do all that you needed it to do, only to find out you actually need to customize it with CSS? Or that it doesn’t have as  much flexibility as the description implied? Ever been thoroughly underwhelmed with the lack of instructions on  how to use a theme? Or perhaps the directions were about as user-friendly as a Latin book. I deal out some tough love to both developers and users on things each side can do to try and make life easier for the other. Would love to hear what you think. Read the article and comment over on Torque: Bridging The Gap Between WordPress Developers & Users

WordCamp Los Angeles 2013WordCamp Los Angeles is taking place September 21st & 22nd – two days of awesome WordPress fun, learning and connecting. If you haven’t bought your ticket yet, I recommend you do so ASAP since they are likely to sell out. As I write this there are only 60 remaining. You also want to make sure you can snag a T-shirt in the correct size. That’s right, in addition to 2 days of presentations and workshops, your $40 ticket also includes lunch and free T-shirt! Can’t say fairer than that. This is the cheapest, most value-packed tech conference around. If you are a WordPress user anywhere near the LA area, attendance is a must! You’ll have tons of fun, learn more than your head can hold, and will connect with other users, developers, designers etc. WordCamps really embody the spirit of the community – everyone freely shares ideas and you can ask all your burning WordPress questions.

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Speakers have just been announced and there are going to be some great sessions. Read the rest of this entry »

WordPress class - Coloft Santa MonicaColoft is an awesome co-working space in Santa Monica. In addition to providing the physical space where entrepreneurs can work together, they also foster community and creativity. One of the value-adds they provide is Coloft Academy – an ongoing series of extremely affordable classes on everything from productivity, business strategy, design and marketing. I am going to be teaching a Beginner’s WordPress class as part of the Academy series. Read the rest of this entry »

Defining Conversions and Calls To Action

Part 1 – Defining Your Conversions and Calls To Action

Mastering the use of WordPress is just one step in making your online presence effective and successful. Your website is going to be in a state of refinement until you’ve really figured out what works and what doesn’t. However, those folks that aren’t designers or developers tend to leave a lot of important decisions about how their website functions up to the developer of whichever theme they’ve purchased, and that’s not always a good thing. For example, just because every theme has a carousel on the homepage, doesn’t mean it’s an effective strategy for your website. Theme developers are trying to sell you a theme, so their objectives are different than yours when presenting a theme demo. Oftentimes people buy into the beautiful presentation of a theme without fully thinking through how it will affect their business goals. Your job is to create a website that has your own objectives in mind – you are going to be guiding your visitors on a path that you have determined. Read the rest of this entry »

problems with images in WordPress - alignment, spacing, positiong

Ah images.

They cause so much grief in the WordPress editor don’t they? They just don’t seem to do what you expect of them. Unfortunately the WordPress editor is not (yet?) a drag n’ drop interface which is how people (well, Mac users mostly ;) ) expect it to work.

So getting images to do what you want can be tricky. I’ve had a few questions about this recently, meaning it’s time for a closer look at how this works. This is not a basic “how to insert an image into a post” article (you can Google that) – this is for folks who know how to add an image, but just don’t understand why it won’t do what they want [insert curses here]!  Read the rest of this entry »

Gmail Introduces Promotions TabDoing the rounds on the interwebs lately is a lot of talk about the new feature Gmail is launching in their interface – tabs. It’s going to make life harder for those of us that send out email newsletters and for those of us who have signed up and like to receive email newsletters. So yeah, just about everyone ;)

Basically Gmail has decided to divide up your inbox into tabs – one of which will be called “Promotions” – this is where a lot of email newsletters – not spam, but ones you have actually signed up for – will end up. This means it’ll be harder for you to find the stuff you want to read, and if you publish emails, it could definitely impact your readership.

Kikolani has a great article on what this all means and how to work with it.

Gmail Promotions Tab

As a receiver or sender of email – make sure you read up and find out what Gmail has in store….

UPDATE: A great blog post from MailChimp about the very real impact this change is having.

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Hi! I'm Lucy Beer. I know that WordPress is liberating when you know how to use it, and bewildering when you don’t. I help individuals and businesses learn WordPress for their specific needs. I will accelerate your knowledge and cut your learning curve in half (at least!). Generic tutorials and videos only go so far - when you need specialized knowledge, or a real person to answer your questions, that's where I come in. I help non-techies understand and use the web to empower their personal or business mission.

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