Common questions new bloggers ask me is how do you build your blog’s readership? How do you get people to read and comment on your posts?
If you’re looking for a quick solution – forget it!
Building your blog’s readership and community takes time. Here’s my five top tips to get it happening!
#1 Become a Better Blog Citizen
Don’t expect people to read and comment on your posts if you aren’t doing the same on other people’s blogs! Blogging is as much about reading other blogger’s posts and commenting on posts as it is writing your own posts.
Besides being a valuable source of ideas for writing your own posts it also helps develops relationships with others. Interaction with other bloggers and their readers, in comments, often leads to new readers of your blog.
Here’s what you need to do:
1. Subscribe and start reading other people’s blogs
- Read this introduction on RSS and subscribing to blogs using Feedreaders
- Follow these instructions to set up your Google Reader account
2. Make an effort to write comments on other peoples blog posts
- Initially leaving comments can be frightening! But commenting is an important part of blogging. It’s often where most your learnng happens.
- Comments are about adding to the conversation — not ‘ WOW great post!’
- Don’t comment for comment sake. Comments should be meaningful, polite, and respond by expanding on the post topic, sharing your thoughts or explaining politely why you disagree.
- If there is an option to subscribe to be notified of new comments — use it! This way you will be notified of new comments on that post and can choose whether to respond to new comments
- It’s okay to direct comments at other readers as opposed to the blogger.
3. Respond back to comments on your own blog posts
- Readers like to know you both read and value the comments they leave on your posts
- Responding back in the comments of your post tells both that reader and other readers you value their input
#2 Link to other bloggers
All bloggers like people linking to their blogs and posts.
A good blogger follows the link in a pingback on their post to check out what a person has written about them. If they like what you’ve written they may leave a comment and even start subscribing to your blog.
It’s good blogging etiquette to link to:
- A person’s blog if you mention a blogger
- The post if you are talking about a particular post on a blog
To learn more read:
- STOP! Don’t Press Publish! Have You Remembered to Add The LINKS?
- What’s A Pingback? And How To Write Links
#3 Building your Personal Learning Network
Personal Learning Networks (PLNs) are all about using web tools such as blogs, wiki, twitter, facebook to create connects with others which extend our learning, increases our reflection while enabling us to learn together as part of a global community.
Making time to connect with others in meaningful ways will build your blog’s readership. People who already connect online are more likely to read and interact with your blog than your friends and family who aren’t as connected.
Twitter is currently the most important tool for connecting; especially since many now prefer to obtain links to blog posts via twitter than subscribe using RSS.
- Read this information about building your PLN
- Follow these instructions to set up your twitter account – you can follow me here on twitter
#4 Write better blog posts
Sad fact of life…not every one who sees your blog post reads it. Even if they read — they often don’t read it all.
To keep your readers attention:
- Every title
- Every paragaph
- Every heading
- Every word
- Every image
——has to count!
Read Here’s My First Five Tips For Writing Better Blog Posts — it’ll help you write better blog posts!
#5 You First, Readers Second!
One of the biggest reasons why new bloggers fail is they focus entirely on writing posts to please readers. Every post becomes a chore because they aren’t writing about what interest them but what they think interests others!
- things you feel strongly or passionate about
- what you’ve learnt — if you didn’t know than it’s likely others didn’t either
Good bloggers always write to fulfil their own needs first because they know by doing so they fulfil the needs of their readers!!!!
These were my five top tips for building your blog’s readership! What have I missed? Do you disagree with my advice? What would you expand on?
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