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Blogging Tips Book: Blog Syndication and Subscription Tips

Blogging Tips - book cover, copyright Lorelle VanFossenThe following excerpt is from Blogging Tips, What Bloggers Won’t Tell You About Blogging by Lorelle on WordPress.

Blog syndication is the use of your blog’s feed to deliver your blog’s content to other blogs, feed readers and aggregators.

Many consider feeds to be a replacement for print or emailed newsletters, bringing the content directly to the reader. FeedBurner and FeedBlitz, among others, offer email subscriptions of your blog’s feeds, delivering feeds in a more familiar fashion to those unfamiliar with feeds.

Content republished without permission may be a violation of the original author’s copyright, unless it is used within their copyright guidelines and/or within Copyright Fair Use restrictions. Professionally arranged syndication is an agreement made between the blogger and a syndication service to reprint the blogger’s content, typically for a fee.

Why do you need a feed?

A feed is a form of updated newsletter, one automatically delivered to your readers. It’s another method for readers to read and monitor the latest activity on your blog.

Feeds extend your reach. They allow the reader to read your blog content at their leisure, on their terms. The choice of feed reader controls how they view your feed, in a way, giving them control over your blog content.
With a click, the reader can be on your page in a moment, to read more, find more information, or to comment. Work is underway to bring comment technology to feeds, which will revolutionize the way readers interact with blogs.

How do you increase blog subscriptions?

There are two ways a visitor can subscribe to your blog. They can subscribe through the feed via their feed reader, or have the feed emailed to them.

Blog subscriptions, however, come in many types. By default, modern blogs offer feeds for the entire blog, for all comments, and for comments from a specific post.

Feeds can also be limited to a specific category of posts, giving your readers a chance to monitor specific topics you blog about.

They can also be set for specific authors, if there is more than one on your blog.

Many blog programs do not currently offer good feed statistics and monitoring packages. Many redirect their feeds through FeedBurner and other feed redirection services which feature feed statistics and analyzing options.

To increase feed subscriptions, make your RSS icon visible on your blog. Place it near the top of each page, at the bottom of each post in the post meta data section, and even in the footer. If your blog readers may not be familiar with feed technology, introduce them to it. It’s a great time-saving method for monitoring the news, weather, and your blog.

Which one in your feeds: full posts or summaries?

Many readers demand full post feeds from their bloggers. They don’t want to click through to the original post to read the whole thing. They want the ease of reading it in one spot with little effort. It also benefits those with limited access to the Internet to be able to select within a blog the posts they wish to read, and then disconnect from the Internet.

Recently, many bloggers are choosing to only offer excerpts of their content via feeds and email subscriptions to protect their content from misuse. They are also finding that their ad revenues increase, as does their comments and traffic levels. If the article is interesting, the reader will click through the feed to their blog, becoming a visitor.

The decision on which version of feed length to permit is based upon your needs, your audience’s needs, and the style of your blog. You can also experiment to see which gives you the best results.

This is an excerpt from Blogging Tips, What Bloggers Won’t Tell You About Blogging by Lorelle on WordPress. For more information on the book and ordering, see Blogging Tips.

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13 Comments

  1. Posted May 30, 2007 at 9:35 am | Permalink

    Great stuff! Congrats on the book publishing. That’s big.

  2. Posted May 30, 2007 at 10:48 am | Permalink

    I have a dropdown set up in my sidebar where users can choose to get the full, partial, or headline only feed. Unfortunately, my site is so new, I only have a couple of subscribers! :(

    Here is the link to where I got the directions on how to do this:

    http://xrl.us/wrho

  3. Posted May 30, 2007 at 2:18 pm | Permalink

    I just got my signed copy of your book today. I am thrilled… looking forward to reading it and sharing with my boyfriend who is new to blogging.

  4. Posted May 30, 2007 at 4:58 pm | Permalink

    I posted this comment several hours ago but it did not show up. Maybe because I put a link in the comment?

    Anyway, I have a dropdown set up in my WP sidebar where users can choose to get the full, partial, or headline only feed. Unfortunately, my site is so new, I only have a couple of subscribers! :(

    Instead of putting the link to the site where I found directions to do it in this comment, if you want the code, contact me through my website and I’ll get you the link.

  5. Posted May 30, 2007 at 6:26 pm | Permalink

    Linda, glad you are exciting about the book. It’s still amazing to me that it took only three weeks from concept to finished product. And so many people are eager to get it and thrilled with it. Wow!

    Will, I pulled your comment out of the comment spam. Thanks for the information. It’s a neat idea.

  6. Posted June 16, 2007 at 3:10 am | Permalink

    This is a really useful article, Lorelle! I came across it when researching for my own post about blog syndication and it gave me some more ideas to try out for my own blog.

    I really agree with your idea about partial feeds, as I think it’s important for readers to read your actual blog, and not just the feeds, especially if you’ve spent time customising the appearance and useability.

    Many thanks for the information!

  7. suhel
    Posted December 27, 2007 at 10:32 pm | Permalink

    great stuff to read , I will sure going to buy book

  8. Posted January 30, 2008 at 10:03 am | Permalink

    i was wanting to know that if there is any way by which to add email subscriptions by adding email address and with the option in each mail to unsubscribe.basically,many visitors are plain lazy or some even do not know that they can subscribe to email updates.this way, if we can send email updates to people whom we feel will like our updates(and with a clear option to unsubscribe), it may be good for both.. let me know your views.

  9. Posted May 7, 2008 at 1:39 am | Permalink

    Good post, thanks for writing

  10. myken
    Posted June 24, 2008 at 2:32 am | Permalink

    nice, thanks you for your suggestions, it is really helpful. keep sharing and hope you wont get tired blogging!

  11. Posted October 25, 2008 at 11:45 am | Permalink

    Great advice for increasing blog subscription

  12. Posted August 6, 2010 at 5:56 am | Permalink

    You may also get mail subscribers using the mailpress plugin for WordPress. It provides an easy subscribe option and automatically forwards the posts to the subscriber by email.


7 Trackbacks/Pingbacks

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