CDBaby's HostBaby for Musicians

I have been checking out the website hosting/templating solution offered for musician and band websites by the folks at CDBaby called HostBaby. My experience with their free trial account exceeded my expectations.  I was able to create a musician site that had all the basic necessities - a music player, a gig calendar, social networking icons, videos, etc, with much less time spent on the technical end of things.  

The tradeoff for that kind of ease is a severe loss of flexibility, but if you can live with the limitations, it is a solution that musicians and bands should take a look at.

I was not happy with the "straight out of the box" template, but after adding some custom modifications and graphics, I began to see the possibilities within the limitations.  

The HostBaby account runs $20/month.  That is more than double the cost of a typical hosting account, but they throw in some credit towards listing your CDs on CDBaby, and they take responsibility for the security of their website platform.  Whereas Joomla and Wordpress need to be upgraded from time to time to keep up with security issues in the web environment, HostBaby takes care of that for you.

It's a solution I'd urge my musician clientele to look at if their needs are simple and straightforward.  Let me know if I can help put the pieces together for you in an aesthetically pleasing and sensible way.    

Does Your Organization use Google Calendar?

Why not put it on your site?   Two of my clients -- a private school and a church -- use Google calendar to keep track of important dates and events.  They wanted their website visitors to be aware of these events so I placed an instance of their Google calendar on their websites.  The Google calendar on the website automatically stays in sync with the organization's Google calendar, eliminating the need separately to update the website calendar!

Embrace the Update!

Updates keep us safe and, well, up-to-date!

As a website owner, you're always aiming to present up-to-date content for your site visitors, and your website is designed to enable you to make routine updates to your content.  Two other types of updates are important as well. 

1) Technical code updates:  as the web environment continually changes, website technology responds and that means technical website upgrades need to be made from time to time.  This form of update helps keep your site secure and stable.   Often the upgrade is a simple one-click process.  Other times it is more involved, because the update package wraps in significant new features along with new security and stability features.  Of course, if you're my client, I'm available to help with these upgrades.

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Mailchimp Simplifies Mailings

Mailchimp is so user-friendly and well thought-out that I want my clients to know about it.  It's gained incredible popularity and for so many good reasons.  It is free -- up to a certain number of subscribers and emails sent per month -- and is simple to use while it accomplishes some very sophisticated tasks.

Setting up a new mailing list in Mailchimp is easy, and you can import your previous list of subscribers (if you have one.)  If you get stuck on a step, it has video tutorials handy that you can view. 

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Picture It

A picture is worth a thousand words

That old adage has become so true on the web. 

My clients love knowing they can add new articles to their websites themselves, but sometimes struggle to add eye-catching photo images.  The key is to edit the image to emphasize its strengths, then upload it for the article.

The few moments you spend to prepare the image will increase its impact!  Read on to learn about a free online photo editor that will help you get the job done quickly!

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