- Update your plugin pages to remove (or make less prominent) the download links. This keeps new users from getting confused and installing plugins that might conflict with or even reduce the functionality of their blog.
- Explain that the feature is available natively in Movable Type now. You may want to refer them to the appropriate Movable Type documentation page.
- Sign up for the Six Apart Affiliate Program and direct your visitor towards your affiliate link to get both Movable Type and professional support.
- Spend less time supporting people on old versions of your plugins and more time developing new features or working with your current clients.
I love Movable Type. Why? Because when Movable Type doesn't do exactly what I want it to do, it is crazy-easy for me to extend. When Movable Type lacked a good user interface for managing lists of books, CDs, DVDs, and more, I built BookQueueToo. Then when I wanted to write reviews about those books and CDs I upgraded BookQueueToo and created Media Manager. When I found an awesome set of templates to make incredible looking Photo Galleries, but then discovered that setting up the templates was cumbersome, I wrote a plugin to automate the process. And finally, when MTAmazon got so antiquated that new users could no longer use it, I upgraded it.
And if Movable Type wasn't so easy to extend by giving me a framework for building custom objects that can be automatically stored in all of the databases that Movable Type supports, if Movable Type didn't give me hooks into the user interface without the need to hack HTML, if Movable Type didn't come equipped with the tools necessary to save me from having to write complicated CGI applications, if Movable Type didn't make everything so easy, I would have stopped long ago.
Plus, the more plugins I build, the more I learn about Movable Type, about Perl, and about extensibility. And the more plugins I build the more fun I have, and thus the more plugins I build. It is a vicious cycle that will one day catch up with me. But in the meantime, I am curious... what plugins do you want to see added to Movable Type? And maybe, just maybe, someone will build it for you!
Last year, Stormhoek, a popular South African wine, started a business blog powered by Movable Type and sent out one hundred complimentary bottles of their wine to bloggers across Europe. With the assistance of well-known blog marketing expert Hugh Macleod, Stormhoek bet big on blogging, counting on the influence and voice of those bloggers to help get their message out.
The result? As you can see in Hugh's Movable Type-powered blog and in today's story on Decanter magazine's website, Stormhoek doubled sales of their wines. According to Decanter:
The result, says Stormhoek spokesman Nick Dymoke Marr, is that the wine now has a 19% share of the over-£5 South African wine market, and sales went from 50,000 cases in 2004 to 100,000 last year.
The popularity of the brand has also earned it listings in Sainsburys, Asda, Oddbins, Majestic, Waitrose and Somerfield.
Of course, the success isn't solely attributable to Stormhoek's embrace of the blogosphere. The company took advantage of the expertise of a long-time member of the Movable Type community, and Hugh was able to assist in making sure the outreach towards bloggers was personalized, individual, and presented in a human voice. The combination of smart use of technology and a canny method of communication seems to have yielded results that are worth toasting.
The main reason we started the Six Apart Professional Network is to help the members of our community build your careers and skills by making the most of your expertise in blogs. And from the start, you've told us that you want to benefit by helping people get started blogging with Movable Type, TypePad and LiveJournal.
So today, we're proud to announce the Six Apart Affiliate Program. It's a simple way to make money by recommending our platforms to your clients, customers, friends, peers, or partners who want to start a blog. So, how much you can earn for referring new bloggers? Here's the details:
- Movable Type: 10% per license (earn up to $129)
- TypePad: $3 per trial subscriber
- LiveJournal: 20% per paid subscription (earn up to $5)
Over on the Huffington Post (did you know they have a technology blog?) Andy Yaco-Mink has posted NaughtyWordChars. It's a clever new Movable Type plugin that performs a much-needed function: Cleaning up the weird characters that arise when you copy and paste from Microsoft Word into Movable Type.
These extraneous characters show up because of the vagaries of how different applications encode special characters, but thanks to Andy's plugin, you don't need to know all the details. Just drop in the plugin, note whether you want to turn the characters into plain ASCII or the fancy HTML equivalents, and you're set.
This is a directory of Fortune 500 companies that have business blogs, defined as: active public blogs by company employees about the company and/or its products.