This brief tutorial will walk you through the techniques I use to organize my WordPress comments and potential blog topics. As far as blog topics go, I use a combination of WordPress drafts and G-Mail labels. Logging into WordPress and setting up a quick draft isn’t as convenient as e-mailing a blog topic in my opinion. I also use Google Reader to e-mail myself potential topic ideas. I will show you how I use Google Reader and G-Mail to automatically label topic ideas.
The Google Mail Settings
Most of this tutorial will be spent in the Settings section of Google Mail. See below for a screenshot.
Google Mail Labels – Organizing Your Blog Topics
The first thing I did when I wanted to organize my blog topics was to create a ‘blog topics‘ label. This label acts as the storage container for all of my potential blog topics. Setting up a label is rather straight forward.
For this example, I created a new label called ‘blog topics‘.
Google Mail Labels – Organizing Your Blog Comments
The next thing I wanted to do was organize my blog comments under a common label. I chose the label ‘Comments‘.
Add a Filter – Blog Topics
Since I didn’t want to manually assign my e-mails the ‘blog topics‘ label, I added in a filter that did this automatically each time I had the ‘blog topic‘ phrase in my subject line of an incoming e-mail.
Setting up a filter in G-Mail is simple. Under the Settings section, select Filters. At the bottom of the screen, you’ll see a link that says, ‘Create a new Filter‘.
Now it’s time to set up the filter that will automatically label your blog topics appropriately. I set up my filter to label any incoming e-mail a blog topic if:
- The from e-mail address is from one of my e-mail addresses.
- The to e-mail address is to my G-Mail account.
- The subject contains the words blog topic.
You can relax some of the restrictions by removing the e-mail address in the from section.
After clicking the ‘Next Step‘ button, you are taken to a screen where you can choose what actions to take. Make sure you apply the label ‘blog topics‘ to any e-mails that match the filter.
You can also select the option to ‘Skip the Inbox‘ so your inbox isn’t flooded with new blog topic ideas.
Add a Filter – Blog Comments
I also wanted a way to capture all of my blog comments and store them in one area.
The next step is to set up a filter that will label new comments with the label of ‘Comments‘. I set up my filter to label any incoming e-mail a comment if:
- The e-mail was from firstname.lastname@example.org
- The subject line contained the title of my blog as well as the word Comment.
The next step is to assign the label to the e-mails that match the filter. I also chose to send the comments straight to the archive.
Use Google Reader for Topic Ideas
I personally get a lot of topic ideas when using Google Reader. This next screenshot shows the interface for Google Reader.
On each post within Google Reader, there is an option to e-mail the post.
By adding in the words ‘blog topic‘ in the subject line and e-mailing the post to your G-Mail account, your filters will automatically label your post for you and store the blog post as a topic idea.
Using Google Reader and Google Mail can be powerful allies in organizing blog content. Feel free to share your own blog organization tips in the comments.