The concept of linking to a blog you like is not new. Many bloggers do this in the form of a BlogRoll or BlogList. Some have plain text links. But lately more people are proudly displaying a customized image that links to their favorite blogger. The surprising part is the image looks very much like a 125 x 125 ad, although usually more unique and aesthetically pleasing. The process of spreading the "link luv" is made easier with a "Grab My Button" gadget, like the on seen on Creative Junkie's site. Let me call the one being linked to the 'advertiser' for lack of a better word. The blogger who hosts your button is the 'promoter.' So, the advertiser designs the button and provides the code for promoters to easily publish the hot button in their sidebars. I was asked by Creative Junkie and others in a BlogCatalog discussion how they could get into this game. Of course you first need a nice image that anyone can access directly (e.g. located on PhotoBucket.) The size and shape depends on what you want, but keeping it at 125 x 125 serves a dual purposes--- comes in handy as a regular ad. If you need help, get some resource ideas on creating blog ads. If you use your button image as part of a regular ad, take a look at where to use a 125 x 125 ad.
For Blogger and Wp.org, here's the code you can customize and use for your button:
<img src="http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3358/3279966696_6f63996198.jpg" alt="" /> <br /><textarea cols="20" rows="3"><a href="http://BloggingWithSuccess.net"><img src="http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3358/3279966696_6f63996198.jpg" alt="BWS tips button" width="125" height="125" /></a></textarea>
NOTES: This example uses the BWS button image and url. So just substitute your button location and your blog's url. Remember the button image must be accessible to everyone (e.g. a shared image on a free host like Flickr). Ours is at "http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3358/3279966696_6f63996198.jpg" Your image could have a file type other than .jpg --- like .png or .gif The first tag, "img src=" just displays your image above the scroll box. The second tag, "textarea..." creates the scroll box, holding the html code for visitors to copy and paste.
You can adjust the scroll box's height and width. Just change 'rows' (number of lines visible in the box without scrolling) and 'cols' (number of characters across the box.) Notice the image width and height is set to 125 for our button. Change this for your image size. Also, change alt= "BWS tips button" to something that uniquely describes your button image. A related post describes how the alt= value lets you track who grabbed your button --- using Google Search. Here's what you do to publish your grab button:
- Create a text/html gadget or widget in your sidebar or footer.
- Copy and paste the code above into your html view.
- Substitute your blog's url and image location . Adjust any row or column numbers.
- Preview/save the widget. Test it by copying your code from the scroll box. Paste in a temporary post or gadget to make sure it's perfect. If you have a problem label the gadget "Under Construction and drop a comment here! We will help you.
You're now set to start your 'grab my button' campaign. Actually this is a win-win situation for you and your friends. They get to show appreciation for your blogging or any help you gave them. You get to be noticed by their readers and maybe gain new traffic.