Why is it used?
The MC Professional Blog is a built in Blogging tool your association can use to create a Blog within your MC Professional solution.
How to Access
Navigate to Community > Blog
The Blog Dashboard is the starting point for any new post. The dashboard includes shortcuts to all the Blogging features you'll need on the left. Those include Entries, Categories, Tags, Comments, and Settings.
On the left, General Stats gives you an overview of the number of Blog Entries - approved and pending - total comments, categories, and tags.
The righthand side of the dashboard shows your most popular blog entries, and their corresponding number of hits (views).
Creating a new Entry
A Blog Entry represents a post on your Blog. Each entry you make will create a separate post, and each one will have its own link.
To begin creating a new entry, navigate to Entries, then click on the New icon in the top right hand corner.
Give the entry a title, then tab down to generate the Alias. Set the entry to published, and select a Category for the entry. Add images, text, and links to create your Blog entry, then click Save in the top right hand corner.
Changing an Entry's Listed Author
When a blog entry is initially created, the blog entry's author will be the admin that created the entry. To change this, click the Metadata Information tab at the bottom of the entry, then add the desired author's name into the Author box, which is pictured below.
Creating a new Category
Categories can be used to help you organize Blog entries. These categories will contain multiple entries each, and will help you keep your content organized on the Blog. Blog categories are similar to Article categories, which you can learn more about here.
To create a new category, start by clicking on the New plus sign in the top right hand corner.
Give the Category a name, and add a Category Slug (optional). A Slug is similar to an Alias, and helps improve your Blog's SEO (Search Engine Optimization). To learn more about SEO, click here. Example:
Category Name: Best Practices
Category Slug: best-practices
Set the new Category to published, and if it should act as the default Category moving forward, select Yes next to Default. Give the Category a Description (optional), then Save.
Creating new Tags
Tags are keywords used to identify Blog entries with particular subject matter. They are best used to help with Search Engine Optimization (SEO), as using the same tag in more than one Blog entry will allow users to search for entries with that tag. As an example, let's use the keyword "networking." If my Blog has 10 total posts, and 3 of them are tagged "networking," Blog viewers can search for the term "networking" to pull a list of all posts using that tag.
To create a new tag, navigate to Tags and click on the New plus sign in the top right hand corner.
Give the tag a Name and a Slug (optional), then Save.
Now when creating a Blog entry, you'll see the ability to add Tags on the right hand side under Tags. Check the box next to any applicable tags, add new ones as needed, then Save.
Under Comments, ASA users have the ability to publish and unpublish comments as needed, or delete comments that are inappropriate.
In order to leave a comment on your blog, members must be logged in. Public commenting is not available for the blog.
Once a comment has been added, it will appear at the bottom of the Blog post.
Configure the specifics of your Blog under the Settings tab.
On the left, you'll see the Main Blog Page Settings:
- Introtext: If introtext is toggled to Enabled, a Blog entry's intro text will display from the home page of the Blog
- Remove objects and images: If Remove objects and images is set to Show, images (and other objects) will be removed from the intro text area to save space on the home page of the Blog
- Number of Introtext Paragraphs: Here, set the number of paragraphs to display as introtext
- Show Read More: If Show Read More is toggled to Enable, a Read More link will display as needed on the home page of the Blog
- Comments per page: limits the number of comments allowed on each blog entry
- Inappropriate Words Filter: If Inappropriate Words Filter is set to Enabled, words listed in the Words to Filter box will be filtered out of Blog comments
- Words to Filter: Words listed here will be filtered in Blog comments
- Replace Inappropriate Words: The symbol or words you add here will replace inappropriate words
To give members access to view or comment on the blog, navigate to Permissions. In this area, check the appropriate Group boxes to give specific members access to view or comment on the blog.
Using the Blog
To add the Blog as a menu item, navigate to Website > Menu Items. Click in to the menu you want to add the blog to, then click the New plus sign in the top right-hand corner.
Under Select Menu Item Type, choose Community > Blog.
The Blog on the front of your site will display in chronological order.
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