How do we make our blogs successful? Many of us are our spending time building a web presence--time we could be using for other things, like writing our books.
If we're investing valuable time into our blogs, then most of us want to see results. After all, we don't want to spend hours writing blog posts that no one bothers to read.
The most tangible ways to see results are in an increasing number of followers as well as a growing number of comments. Stat counters can also give us an idea of the number of unique daily visitors. But I personally think I'm more successful if I'm somehow engaging my readers enough for them to begin to engage back.
So, how can we build a larger following and a greater number of comments? In other words how do we engage our readers? I think many of us are doing a great job already at this. But can we do even better?
As I've traveled cyberspace, I've run across a few "glitches" that make it hard for me to engage. I'm calling them Ten Common Blogging Mistakes (these are in random order):
1. Not involving the reader in your post: I find it much easier to comment on posts that ask a question at the end or in some way make the post relatable to me as a reader. When there's nothing to stir my thoughts or draw me in, I have to think much harder to come up with something to say in the comments. If we want comments, then we should make it easy for the reader to share.
2. Having a difficult-to-read post: I have a hard time staying focused on posts in which paragraphs are run together or are too long. Short paragraphs that are spaced apart make the reading easier. My eyes also tend to glaze over on posts that are really long. I'm apt to skim or skip the post if I can't quickly read through it.
3. Not having a blog link or listing too many personal blogs on your profile page: When someone new leaves a comment on my blog, I usually click on their name which takes me to their blogger profile page. Once I'm on their profile page, I try to find the link to their blog and return the visit. If I can't find a blog link or there are too many, then I'm tempted to give up. We need to make our primary blog links easy to locate and then it will be easier for people to find us.
4. Not being consistent in posting blogs: I'm less likely to visit blogs that post sporadically, than blogs that post on a more consistent basis. Now I realize not everyone can post every day or even on set days, but posting at least a couple of times a week is good way to ensure that we don't lose readers and it helps keep our web presence visible.
5. Wasting your readers time: Blog content is entirely subjective. What appeals and is applicable to one reader, may not to another. I love the variety I find in all of the blogs I follow--a mixture of both personal and professional information. Finding that balance takes skill (many of you do this very well). We're more likely to lose readers if we aren't offering them something that makes them want to come back.
For Part 2 Click here: Ten Common Blogging Mistakes (Part 2)
Of the five mistakes listed so far, are you guilty of any? Have you noticed any of these mistakes on other blogs and decided to stop reading the blog as a result?