Think of your blog as your racing portfolio. You’ll need a few key components for it to work the way you need it to work – namely a gallery feature, embedded videos, and articles. You can spice it up with countless plugins but we have put together a small list of four critical plugins that you’ll want for a quality sponsor-attractive blog. And we’d also caution against going overboard with your plugins due to maintenance and security. Make sure you use trusted plugins that are well supported by the people or companies that develop them. We won’t be covering WordPress Themes in this article, but I plan to post a future entry on that topic. Themes apply to the look of the blog as where plugins are added functionality for the blog.
The Gallery plugin will be your best friend when it comes time to dump all of your photos somewhere. Our favorite gallery plugin is Photocrati Media’s NextGEN Gallery plugin for WordPress. It’s easy to use and extremely popular and well supported. You’ll be able to easily set up albums to help you categorize your event photos. The functionality of the NextGEN Gallery is awesome. It’s become the standard on the web.
You can also expand upon the NextGEN Gallery with the related sidebar widget.
Embedded Video Plugin
For those who are planning to gather video footage via an in-car camera (this should be you), an embedded video plugin will be a great addition. The best way to use videos on your site will be to publish them on Youtube first and link to those videos on your blog site.
The Embedded Video plugin will make it so that when you are posting content on your site you can simply paste a link to your Youtube video directly in the article and the plugin will convert the link automatically for you once you publish the post or page. When readers visit your article they’ll see a video player displayed on your page to play the video, as opposed to a link that would take them to Youtube. They won’t have to leave your site.
Our favorite plugin for this functionality is Embed Plus. It’s well supported and very easy to set up and use.
Social Sharing Plugins
You want to make it as easy as possible for users to share the content of your blog once you post it. The main person promoting your blog articles will be you, of course. The goal is to get others to help you with that promotion. The first step is adding social icons to your event write-ups and other content. We like Async Social Sharing. Very flexible and easy to use. This plugin allows people to share your articles on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and other popular social media sites.
When creating event write-ups it would be a good idea to treat each event as an addition to your portfolio. You’re creating an organized library of event articles with photos and a portfolio plugin will help make your work a visual masterpiece. You can certainly achieve similar results by writing a good article with embedded photos and videos, but a portfolio could help set you apart from the crowd. Check out this Portfolio plugin and see if it’s right for you.
These are just four of our favorite blogs we feel will help make your blog attractive to potential car sponsors.Spend some time browsing the WordPress Plugins directory to find more great plugins to set your blog apart from the rest.
How to Install Plugins in your WordPress Blog
All this talk about plugins and some of you might be wondering – how the hell do I install one of these plugins? If all this talk of plugins sounds like a foreign language to you, click over the WordPress Support site and read up on Managing Plugins – it will help you learn about installing and maintaining your blog plugins. And if you want more basic info about WordPress blogging software, you can find tons of information here.