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Ask Yourself How You Should Get Me to Read Your Blog

In How to Get Me to Read Your Blog, Thord Daniel Hedengren tells us how to convince him, and others, to read your blog.

Chances are I’m not reading your blog. That’s not because I don’t like you, most likely I don’t even know you exist, and that’s your fault.

Yes, you heard me. Your fault. It’s something you can remedy though.

There are a gazillion blogs out there, and most of them suck, to be honest. Yours might not, though, so I’m willing to have a look. But how am I to find it? And why should I stay along at all?

His points are very good:

  • Are you commenting on my posts?
  • Do you submit your posts to social tools?
  • Do you write great headlines?
  • Does your blog look like shit?
  • Does your blog even function like it should?
  • Don’t clutter it at all!
  • Do I get your blog?
  • Are you being consistent with your updates?

Any of these resemble you and your blog?

I’d add a few more questions to the list:

  • Are you writing for your audience?
  • Are you meeting the needs of your audience?
  • Are you writing good comments, or just link bait comments?
  • Are you contributing to the online conversation on your blog and off?
  • Are you behaving professionally?
  • Are you treating your blog business professionally, and like a business?
  • Are you spending more time watching and whining about your stats than working on writing great content?
  • Is the gimmick and games of blogging more fun than the writing and conversation?
  • Will this blog exist in 5 years?

As for asking me to read your blog, don’t ask. Forthright requests to review, look, critique, or read your blog will not work with me. I get too many. People forget this is my job, not just a volunteer project. I wish I had that much time.

If you want me to read your blog, writing something brilliant in the comments. Make me want to find out who you are from what you say on my blog. Or, write something brilliant about my blog content with a good trackback, and I may come looking to see what you said. Say something dazzling, unusual, and intellectual, and I may even leave a comment on your blog.

Want any blogger to read your blog? That’s the method. Make them want to come see what you are doing. Don’t beg nor demand their attention.

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Copyright Lorelle VanFossen, member of the 9Rules Network, and author of Blogging Tips, What Bloggers Won't Tell You About Blogging.

14 Comments

  1. Posted December 2, 2007 at 4:46 am | Permalink

    “Does your blog look like shit?”

    Man, I can’t stop laughing at this! But I’ve got a pretty flowery-pink blog (I hope that doesn’t look like shit to anybody! :D

  2. Posted December 2, 2007 at 4:56 am | Permalink

    You sure like to (& can) give great looking titles to your posts.

    Will this blog exist in 5 years?

    I don’t know the answer.

  3. Posted December 2, 2007 at 5:28 am | Permalink

    Pelf: Your blog looks like shit. (No, no, I’m just kidding!) :D

    Well, there’s some good questions here Lorelle, some are more general (the sort that are just common sense if the blog is for professional purposes). Mine is written more as a matter of self-expression about my views on [insert topic: web design] than really writing it for a professional purpose. My blog has been the central part of my web site so far, but in the forthcoming redesign, it will be just a part of the site – so it doesn’t sit neatly with some of the questions you’ve suggested. I still find myself asking ‘How can I get people to read my blog?’ but my blog is mostly about web design, so it’s a bit specific. I’m generally doing all the right things, I probably just need to write more often! Hahaha! My concern is that I don’t want to write more often (potentially lowering the quality of the posts to do so) when not many people are reading it anyway.

  4. Posted December 2, 2007 at 9:19 am | Permalink

    This is a topic that I think every blogger struggles with. I am constantly thinking about whether I am truly giving my readers what they are desiring from my blog. And too often the answer is, I don’t know. Blogging is a good social media tool, but it is not great. It is very hard to get a dialog going with your readers.

  5. Posted December 2, 2007 at 9:29 am | Permalink

    I would say that if someone comes along to my blog and they think it looks like shit or they don’t like the content or they don’t get my blog, there isn’t a hell of a lot I can do about it. Same goes with real life. Some people you have an affinity for, others not.

    As for the Diggs and StumbleUpons of the world, the impression I get of them is of a ravenous, attention deficit disordered horde that clicks on your blog and moves on to the next. Sixty-nine minutes of fame is what you get with them. I appreciate far more the contact I have developed with readers over time.

  6. Posted December 2, 2007 at 6:53 pm | Permalink

    “Don’t clutter it at all!”

    The current mantra. So I uncluttered.

    And then, in the subsequent weeks, my readers have requested, one by one, the return of almost everything I took off.

    And almost every time — well, lots of the times — I try to “write for my audience” the post sits there, lonely and unnoticed.

    So, I guess I need to just do what I do.

    And be glad it’s not a business, for me; it’s love.

  7. Posted December 2, 2007 at 7:46 pm | Permalink

    It has been my observation, over the past thirty-some-odd years, that shit has a tendency to take on a wide variety of shapes, colours, consistencies and smells. By that rationale virtualy any blog out there could be said to look like shit at one time or another.

  8. Posted December 2, 2007 at 9:17 pm | Permalink

    Be true to yourself. Write what you’re passionate about, and people will appreciate your authenticity.

    Life shouldn’t be a jr. high popularity contest, especially with anonymous netizens.

  9. Posted December 3, 2007 at 3:05 pm | Permalink

    The fun thing for me is that i give comments on English weblogs but people who will visit my weblog see that I write in Dutch. I don’t think that you, Lorelle will understand that.
    Sometimes i ask myself why i comment on blogs not in my own languages, but i do it because i like to coment on a post i like and i want to see something about it.

  10. Posted December 3, 2007 at 5:17 pm | Permalink

    @Kaj Rietberg:

    Actually, I understand it very well and do a lot of translation of bloggers who comment and link to me who blog in different languages. I’ve lived in countries where I rarely heard English unless I talked to myself. :D I understand completely.

    It is my dream that soon, the biggest barrier in the world will be broken: the language barrier. It’s coming soon, but not soon enough for me.

  11. Posted December 5, 2007 at 1:29 am | Permalink

    Will this blog exist in 5 years?

    Yep, if I am not dead by that time.

  12. Posted December 10, 2007 at 1:07 pm | Permalink

    Hey, good post.

    I’m turned off by many bloggers who put way too many ads in the content of their posts, and when they have a black or really dark background – that terms a blog for me as being shit.

    Automatic music when you reach a post is annoying too!

  13. lucian
    Posted December 23, 2013 at 7:14 am | Permalink

    I have an epic poem in blog form that goes from the Big Bang to around December 2012. Whenever I comment I put my blog in the website box. That way, when people click my name, they go straight to it. I don’t limit myself to history or poetry sites either. Not many visit and I don’t have many followers but I’m grateful for what I do have. There is a lot of content on the site already. I don’t completely know what to do to add more since its already a self-contained unit. Still, its there. It’ll probably be there for a while. I may even add more poems at some point.

    • Posted December 28, 2013 at 8:37 am | Permalink

      If you have created a “book” so to speak, and it is complete on your site, and adding more information ruins the effect, then it is done. Good for you. Move onto something new.

      As for getting people to read your blog, intelligent questions and comments in the comment box on other sites helps dramatically, as does becoming an influential and noticeable character in social media, and adding your URL to the comment box helps, even though it is standard policy and requested by most sites. Required by some. Doesn’t mean people will click through just because it is there. What you say and how you behave encourages the possibilities.

      Thanks.


6 Trackbacks/Pingbacks

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