|Image via CrunchBase|
I discovered Zemanta a year or so ago, and it makes life that bit easier for the beginner to intermediate blogger. When you are writing a blog, you have other things to think about aside from the actual words. Sometimes you need good images, other times you need to quote from another blog and sometimes you will need to add references or links to explain uncommon terms.
Adding an Image - When you add an image from elsewhere on the internet, it's probably subject to copyright and needs certain things even if you have permission to use it - like accreditation and or a link back to the owner. When Zemanta is downloaded, in the right hand side tool bar will be thumbnail suggestions of suitable images. Right now it's showing me the firefox logo as a suitable match to the text I have typed so far. If you have a Flickr account, then you can add images from that when you set it up.
In text links. Underneath the text box as I type is a list of suggestions that may need explaining, so far thumbnail, copyright, Zemanta, and Firefox are all appearing.
Tags - When I have finished typing I can move back to the right hand side toolbar and have a look and see what tags it suggests for the post, if I like them then I only have to click on them and they will be added.
Related articles - if you don't use a plugin on Wordpress for related links, or use another blogging platform, then Zemanta will also suggest related articles that you can add yourself. If you click my sources, you can suggest where to get related links from. It can be other blogs you own, or blogs you like by your favourite authors. Again it's all in the right hand tool bar. It allows you to link to other blogs with ease and in time, your blogs will be added and people will link to your content if they like it - it can be a good traffic builder.
At the end of every blog post you will see a little orange icon, saying get Zemified (or similar). If you click this it will allow you to take parts of this post and link back to it, in other words it makes things very easy to quote extracts from this blog and any others you find with the little orange icon.
The last nifty little trick Zemanta has up it's sleeve is very useful to those that monetise their blogs, it allows you to add your Amazon Associates ID. Then if you write book reviews or movie reviews, then it will add to the list of in text links the most suitable Amazon links for you to use. It has the default for it's own amazon account, so if you are planning to use this you will need to add your own details as soon as you can.
Hope you find Zemanta useful, I certainly do. I started just using images, and the refining tool to search for specific images and have gradually used it more and more.
When you install Zemanta as a browser extension, it will automatically load on any blogging platform.
Currently supported platforms include: WordPress, Blogger, Tumblr, TypePad, Posterous, Movable Type, Drupal. Also, be sure to know that it's only installed in the browser you are using (it will not appear on your other browsers/computers.)