Although I thought the rise of social networks would mark an end of the blogging era, the two actually complement each other quite nicely. Social networks are used to promote blog content, and social networks are present on every blog, whether it’s via comment section, or buttons on the page itself. There are a multitude of different blog platforms out there, so if you still haven’t gotten your feet wet when it comes to blogging, it’s about time you did, and this list should help you get started. We got a lot of ground to cover, so we’ll get straight to the point.
The mother of all blogging platforms, WordPress.com covers nearly 20% percent of the internet. Once you have decided to go with WordPress, you can choose between freemium hosting, where you get a wordpress.com domain, with limited customization options, and free .org incarnation which gives you a much a higher degree of control, such as theme customization, coding, and as much plug-ins as you can possibly handle, which range from plain, to incredibly sophisticated. WordPress is great for pros, but its mountain of advanced options might scare off casual users.
You can get started with Blogger immediately if you already have a Google account. Blogger is completely free to use, and can be customized without much complication, although it is nowhere near WordPress in that department. What we like is that it is connected with Google AdSense, which means, if your blog becomes popular, you can earn some money. Also, Blogger is connected to other Google services, such as Google+, and Feedburner. However, that’s pretty much it, and reminds a bit of other Google services which weren’t particularly tied into Google. All of them were abandoned since. Luckily, that’s is not the case with Blogger.
The young upstart among blogging platforms, Tumblr is somewhat of a hybrid, part blogging platform, part social network. It has a large community of users, and its influence is apparent in the fact that most companies nowadays have a separate Tumblr blog, even if they have their own company blog. Tumblr makes it incredibly easy to reblog stuff from other Tumblr users, which makes it somewhat similar to Twitter and Facebook in that aspect.
Stepping onto the market somewhat quietly in 2013, Medium is the brainchild of people that who made Twitter. Apart from connecting well with Twitter, it’s unique for its social aspect, which makes it possible for other people to edit or annotate your work, and vice versa. While it doesn’t allow for much customization because of its features that are pretty much set in stone, it can help writers expose their work and talent to a large number of people, because of Medium’s growing popularity.
We haven’t even scratched the surface of this topic, but these 5 platforms should be enough to get you started. After you have “conquered” each of them, you can work your way down, or up, to other blogging platforms, and find one which provides the best outlet for your creativity.