Programmer, developer, webmaster, techie ... none of these words describe me or most of the marketers I meet. But there is one skill I learned in college that has proven invaluable to me as a marketer -- basic HTML (Hyper Text Markup Language).
I've worked with hundreds of marketers and unfortunately, this is one skill many have yet to master. Basic HTML (and yes, I mean basic -- I'm not suggesting you learn the whole language) can significantly improve your success as an inbound marketer. You'll be more independent, and you won't need to call your webmaster every time you need to make a change on your website.
I hate seeing text-based links in blog posts, social media and forum threads. I don't want to copy and paste the text into a new tab, I just want it to open the link. Not every site enables auto-linking, so sometimes you have to do it the old-fashioned way. Here's how to create a hyperlink:
Note: Just like everything that goes up must come down, every bracket you open must be closed.
If you've used Microsoft Word, you're probably familiar with the different styles, each varying in importance. Headings in HTML work the same way and can also be important for search engine optimization. An H1 is the most important, H2 slightly less, and so on.
Paragraphs and Spacing
Paragraphs have about a 1.5 line spacing before and after each block of text. If you don't want the extra spacing, use a break rule.
We all love filling our blog posts and webpages with images, but they don't always fit perfectly in the allocated space. Some basic tags will help you resize images on the fly, although editing images prior to uploading them on your website is preferred so you don't stretch the proportions.
To start, don't upload large image files with a high resolution. Typically 50-150 KB or 150-600 pixels wide will do just fine for most websites. Two optimization tips here -- since search engines can't read images, you need to tell them what the image is -- use keyword-rich file names (inbound-marketing-tips.jpg vs. img01234.jpg) and alternative text (alt text) in case the image doesn't load properly.
Finally, there are two basic kinds of lists, ordered and unordered. In other words, numbers or bullets.
Now go forth and conquer HTML!
This article is written by Erin Colbert, a member of our consultant team at HubSpot. Check out Erin's Bio.
Photo credit: Marjan Krebelj