Have you ever finished writing a blog post, then anticipated a deluge of page hits and comments? After all, you’ve just finished writing what you believe is a truly insightful post, a fresh take on a common theme or daily occurence, so obviously people out in the blogosphere will stop by. I sure have. I remember eagerly penning this post about the role of personal expression in writing instruction for struggling students. So far, it has only generated one response.
While I don’t work tirelessly to increase readership of the ‘Stew, one of the many reasons I enjoy blogging is creating dialogue. It’s simply more enjoyable to put ideas and musings out there, exchanging questions and comments with readers, rather than the blog simply be a refined diary of sorts. I also consider digitally interacting with you “strangers” out there more satisfying than posting to facebook walls of long-ago neighborhood friends.
But I am coming to understand that promoting a blog and gaining a consistent readership and dialogue is no simple task. It’s like a part time job. Simply producing great content won’t produce readership; it takes active marketing.
Have you considered the complex, multifaceted ways bloggers attempt to promote their posts and drive page views? This enlightening infographic from edudemic.com provides a road map for those of us who are at least somewhat interested in understanding the multitude of strategies bloggers and other web writers employ to create traffic. The graphic made me pause, challenging me to run down the list of what I do–and don’t do–to promote this blog according to five categories: Social Media, Bookmarking Sites, Personal Contacts, Other Blogs, and Syndication.
Social Media–I link my posts to Facebook and Twitter, but I do not use Pinterest, Linkedin, or Google+.
Bookmarking Sites–I don’t currently utilize sites like Reddit, Digg, or Delicious.
Personal Contacts–I do share blog posts with professional groups and message boards, but I do not add a link on e-mail signatures or send out links in mass e-mails.
Other Blogs–This is the category in which I interact the most–I do try to carve out time to comment on other blogs, submit as a guest blogger, and respond to the vast majority of comments left at the ‘Stew.
Syndication–Apparently, you can submit your blog to a number of sites, including DemandStudios, to help spread your content to larger, more established news sites like USA Today and Salon.
What are my takeaway? As much as enjoy writing and blogging, I have no desire to elevate the hobby to a part-time job–it takes too much effort to fully engage in all of the above promotion categories. And I do not envy those who attempt to make a living out of online writing and blogging. There’s so much great content out there, so many distractions, and so much time needed to drive readers to a given site. I’m curious to know about your approach to blogging and promotion:
What do you do to promote your blog? Do you care about increasing your readership? What other tips or insights do you have to offer about promoting your blog, or blogging in general?