Blogkeeping // Growing Your Readership

Blogkeeping // Growing your readership // Elembee.com

In the last couple of weeks we’ve discussed original content and collaborations for growing your blog, which is what keeps readers coming back. But what can you do to get them to visit in the first place?

Leave thoughtful comments

I think this probably goes without saying, but the blogging community is built on comments. I started growing my blog with the comment section, and some of my best blogging friendships started there — and not just with the bloggers, with fellow readers as well! In some cases, I left a comment on a blog I liked, the blogger returned the favor, and we just kept chatting from there. In other cases, I’ve made friends through a blog instead, with fellow readers — I started visiting their blogs because I kept noticing their comments on another blog I was reading.

This is not to say you should plaster the internet with comments — keep them thoughtful and personable. I mean, who gets warm and fuzzies from “Great post, enter my Brand X giveaway!”? If I’m being honest, I avoid a blog if I see that. But when I see a well-thought-out comment, I want to read more of what that person has to say! Blogging is meant to be a conversation, so keep the conversation going, and people will take notice. And keep in mind, this isn’t a quick way to gain readers — I really think it’s more about building relationships so you can support each other.

(A little side note on making it easy to comment: I don’t pretend to know anything about Blogger, so feel free to disagree below, but I would really love it if everyone would allow comments by Name/URL since I’m not on Blogger and OpenID is annoying/doesn’t work half the time, especially on mobile devices (even worse if you add CAPTCHA). Or, switch to Disqus! For WordPress users, use FV Antispam and Akismet, and you won’t have to worry about those pesky CAPTCHA plugins. I think it requires some special skill set I don’t have to get a successful CAPTCHA in less than 5 tries!)

Reach out on social media

Social media is where you can have an ongoing conversation — I can’t tell you how many people I’ve met through Twitter and how many blogs I’ve discovered (and follow) that way. I would say the key to social media is to find the one you enjoy spending time on, and spend most of your time interacting there — you’ll get more out of it than if you just spend a little time in each one. I’m on Twitter all the time, so Twitter is one of my top sources of referral traffic, and people who enjoy Twitter as much as I do respond to and share my posts there, which introduces new readers to my blog (and me to new blog reads!). You may enjoy Facebook more, and that’s totally fine — Facebook is a great way to connect with readers who aren’t necessarily into blogging or social media, since pretty much everyone has a profile these days.

Look for link-ups and other ways to share your posts

Have you heard of Friday’s Fancies on Long Distance Loving? It’s a weekly link-up for fashion-related posts, and the community there is incredible. I don’t participate regularly, but the times that I have, I’ve always received comments from new readers.* Something Charming also hosts a weekly link-up if post about weddings — just look around, if there’s something that interests you, someone has probably created a link-up for it. Link-ups are a great way to connect with like-minded bloggers and form new relationships, and in turn, you can introduce your readers to each other.

Also look for other communities where you can share your posts, like DailyBuzzStyle or IFB’s Links a la Mode. For some communities, you will need to apply for membership or regularly submit links, but if you feel your content is a good fit, it’s worth a try.

Participate in Twitter chats

This goes with the idea of finding communities that will be interested in your content. Twitter chats are usually set for a certain time with a special hashtag so you can follow what everyone is saying, and many will post questions ahead of time somewhere, through their website, newsletter, or Facebook. All you have to do to participate is jump in using the hashtag (I recommend TweetDeck for keeping up!) and answer the questions and respond to others. My favorite is BlogBrunch — I’m always connecting with new readers, finding new blogs to follow, and learning something new!

Focus on one or two things

I have actually posted less frequently in the past two months, but I’ve seen more growth than ever, and I think part of it is due to my focus on Blogkeeping and Across the USA. With more and more new blogs every day, I think it’s easier for people to remember one special thing you do rather than your blog in general, but if you can get them to remember that special thing, they’re more likely to come back for more. Plus, it’s so much easier to focus on promoting a couple of things, so you can spend more time on it, and in turn get more out of it. I don’t think that necessarily means you have to turn into a niche blog (let’s be honest, I have way too many varied interests for that), but if there’s something you particularly enjoy talking about, make it a regular thing and spend extra time promoting it, and see what happens.

There are so many more ways to grow your readership, but I think what it really comes down to is community. Very few people have huge growth overnight, so I think it’s important to look for people who will support you, and you can help each other grow. What are some ways you have grown your readership?

*{av} made a point in the comments I think is super important and bears repeating in an update to this post — not being an ACTIVE participant in a link-up isn’t going to get you anywhere. Like everything in blogging, you get out of it what you put into it. I think the fact that I do receive new comments even though I don’t participate regularly speaks volumes for the kind of community there, but I should have mentioned that the only way to truly benefit from those relationships is to build them over time by participating regularly. And I think that’s true with anything mentioned here — it will take time, and you have to be consistent in your efforts if you want to see results.

A list of link-ups

Update: I’ve been asking around about link-ups, and here are some I found:

Meet the author

Hello! I’m Lisa M. Butler, and I offer straightforward web guidance for making it happen online. I got to where I am because of my website, and I want to help you get where you want to be. As a web designer and developer, I’ve guided my clients through the tech-y stuff, step by step. I’m here to share that same advice and guidance with you so you can get your website together and be awesome online.

Comments

  1. Allyssa says:

    Great tips! No one knows your blog is there unless you show them. Commenting gets your name out there. And unfortunately, people go about this in the wrong way. If you tell me to visit your blog, I won’t lol.

    Posted on February 20, 2013
    • Lisa says:

      SO true. I think people just want to get their name out there as much as possible, but I think growing your blog is really more about quality over quantity, at least in the beginning (cliché as that sounds). One person who loves your blog and will keep coming back and sharing with friends will do more for you in the long run than 20 people who are indifferent.

      Posted on February 20, 2013
  2. I’ve asked the question about readership growth so many times. I really appreciate this post, Lisa. Many people answer this question, but few people do it so thoughtfully. Thank you! Thanks, also, for this series.

    Posted on February 20, 2013
    • Lisa says:

      Thanks Lauren, I’m happy to hear that! There really is no right answer, and I think as long as you are willing to experiment and also be thoughtful and personable, you’ll figure out what works best for you.

      Posted on February 20, 2013
  3. the zhush says:

    Really well said! Commenting on other blogs, the “right way” like you pointed out, was the number one traffic source for me when I first started out. Unfortunately, I don’t have the same time anymore to do this, and I think my blog has sort of “plateaued” for now…LOVING this series and Elembee in general, found you via Meg Biram. PS: EVERYONE please get rid of those captchas and make it EASY for your readers to comment. amen.

    Posted on February 20, 2013
    • Lisa says:

      Thank you so much for stopping by! I’m with you — I haven’t had time to comment like I used to, so I don’t really see growth from that anymore. But, because I comment less, they are usually more thoughtful, and I’ve built more meaningful relationships that way.

      When I had a full-time job, I used to read and comment on my iPhone, which meant I pretty much had to avoid Blogger blogs, especially with CAPTCHA — so frustrating! Now I mainly read on my iPad, which is still a lot of trouble. That’s why I’m such a fan of Disqus (the only reason I don’t use it here is because I like the design of my comment section, and Disqus isn’t as flexible. But I usually don’t have trouble commenting with mobile devices on WP anyway).

      Posted on February 20, 2013
  4. These are great tips, as always, LIsa. I totally agree on commenting- I feel like if you don’t comment, you’re just another pageview in google analytics.

    And I hate captcha…it makes me feel like a failure at life, ha!

    Posted on February 20, 2013
    • Lisa says:

      I think when you’re new to the blogging world, commenting can feel like you’re butting in on other people’s conversations. I wish I had realized earlier that that’s totally not the case!

      CAPTCHA makes me feel like I need new glasses (which I probably do, but not as badly as it might suggest haha). And the ones that require simple math? You can forget it. I think I’ve blocked that part of school from my memory.

      Posted on February 20, 2013
  5. Betsy says:

    “I’ve made friends through a blog instead, with fellow readers — I started visiting their blogs because I kept noticing their comments on another blog I was reading.”

    Most of the blogs I’ve started following in the past few months – and most of those that I visit most regularly – came to my attention this way. I’m so much more excited about regularly reading a blog when I know that they’re invested in the community and have left thoughtful comments elsewhere. It’s a great way to find new friends who don’t just want to make it a numbers game but who want to build relationships.

    I get totally overwhelmed by Twitter chats though – any advice you might have on how to keep your head above water at BlogBrunch and similar things would be received with much punctuation and many emoticons!

    Posted on February 20, 2013
    • Kate says:

      I thought I’d share my two-cents on Blog Brunch- I think you have to try to go with the flow rather than fighting it and accept that you’re drowning if we’re going with the water metaphor :) There is NO WAY to really follow the whole thing, so I just try to scan the conversation and jump in when something resonates with me or someone asks a question that I feel I can answer. I think having columns in Tweetdeck or Hootsuite really helps there too- I have a friends list which makes it easier to interact with friends who are also participating in the chat.

      Posted on February 20, 2013
    • Lisa says:

      I think you hit it exactly — it’s about building relationships, not chasing the numbers game.

      For BlogBrunch, I totally agree with Kate — you will never keep up, so just accept it. I use Tweetdeck and have columns for the hashtag (#blogbrunch), @blogbrunch mentions, replies to me, and my regular feed. I also keep the questions open in a separate window because I usually miss the question but can tell when they’ve asked the next one. Usually I will try to send 1-2 tweets answering each question, then start responding to things as I see them, then I’ll usually end up in a conversation with a few people. You just have to jump in, and don’t worry if you’re late responding to something — people are constantly retweeting answers from earlier questions and keeping the conversations going.

      Posted on February 20, 2013
  6. I feel weird saying this because it has been around for awhile (and I have had an account for awhile too), but i’m a twitter newbie. How do you use twitter to find other bloggers? Is there a hash tag people use? And, does anybody else know about other twitter chats (on top of blog brunch)? I really want to become a better twitter user!

    Posted on February 20, 2013
    • Lisa says:

      With Twitter, you just have to jump in. If someone says something, and you have a response, don’t be afraid to tweet back! When you find a new blog, follow them on Twitter, and as your follow list grows, you’ll start seeing others you can follow from retweets and conversations. And if you share posts from other bloggers, be sure to mention them in the tweet so they know you’ve tweeted about them (use @theirusername, and if you use the username in the beginning of the tweet, put a period first so anyone following you can see the tweet).

      BlogTrends is another Twitter chat, it’s every Monday at 8pm CST I think. If you see people in your feed using a certain hashtag several tweets in a row, they’re probably participating in a twitter chat, and you can usually do an internet search for that hashtag to find out more about the chat (or just jump in and ask!).

      Posted on February 20, 2013
      • Julie says:

        Thank you so much for this. I’m also new to Twitter, and it stresses me out in a serious way. I feel like other bloggers have a seriously established presence at this point, and that they’ll wonder “Who is this random person talking to me?” Same thing with Instagram. But I guess what I’m gathering here is that you just have to take the plunge! I’ll try to be brave :)

        Posted on February 22, 2013
        • Twitter is all about talking to people you don’t know — no one will think it’s strange if you talk to them!

          Posted on February 23, 2013
  7. Sandra says:

    Yes to the thoughtful comments. For me one of the big reasons for blogging IS to build community and make some friends and share some common interests.

    I’d rather have a smaller group of engaged readers. I like to have a sense of who is going to read what I am writing. Otherwise, it feels like I am bleating into the wilderness!

    Funnily enough, on the business side of blogging, advertisers and sponsors are going this way too. Before it used to be just about numbers – now it’s also about having an engaged following too.

    Posted on February 20, 2013
    • Lisa says:

      It’s nice to see that shift with sponsors! And I agree, it’s nice to build a community that shares your interests. Usually I’m not comfortable at networking type events, but Alt was a completely different story — I felt at ease because I knew everyone really got it.

      Posted on February 21, 2013
      • Sandra says:

        That’s one of the reasons that I love Alt – even if you don’t share the same specific interests, you are around 650 people who love good design.

        Posted on February 21, 2013
  8. Kate says:

    I love this post, Lisa! I think when a lot of people are trying to grow their readership they’re hoping for a quick fix, but really it’s a combination of many things, and mostly it’s about getting your name out there and making friends! You’ve really touched on a lot of the many ways to go about it in a very clear way.

    Posted on February 20, 2013
    • Lisa says:

      I agree! If you can focus on making friends instead of gaining readers, those friends will support you and actually help you get your name out there.

      Posted on February 21, 2013
  9. Lori says:

    Lisa, this post is incredibly helpful, especially since I’m somewhat new to the blogging world. When I think about the blogs that I faithfully follow and want to share with my friends, the thing that stands out to me the most is that the author is consistent on when they post new content. Whether it’s everyday or every other day, I love when a blog is consistent in their posting! I believe this is another helpful way to grow readership.

    Posted on February 20, 2013
    • Lisa says:

      Great point, Lori! My readership didn’t grow until I started posting consistently. And, consistent posting helped me improve my skills and develop my voice.

      Posted on February 21, 2013
  10. These are fantastic tips, thank you so much! I’ve been blogging since July 2011 and I’m finally starting to make strides on expanding my readership and my social media presence. All of your points reinforce exactly what’s been told to me before so thank you! Keep up with the great posts – they’re so helpful :)

    Posted on February 20, 2013
    • Lisa says:

      Thanks Lauren! I think it’s just important to remember that however you decide to grow your blog, it will take time, and you have to be consistent.

      Posted on February 21, 2013
  11. Alice says:

    Thank you for this! I’m still learning how to grow my community, so I don’t have any tips. I just read blogs on a regular basis, which I have done even before I started blogging, and when I have something to say I leave a comment. :)

    I think Twitter is great for sharing, it’s how I find good blogs, besides the links bloggers like you share.

    And I have to agree with your first point – leaving a Name/URL option for commenting is so important in my opinion! I hate CAPTCHA and I do admit I am quite annoyed when there is no name/url/(email) option.

    xx
    Alice

    Posted on February 20, 2013
    • Lisa says:

      That’s a great way to think about commenting — leave one when you have something to say. Not that “I love this post” type comments are bad, but if that’s the only type of comment you’re leaving, people aren’t really going to get to know you.

      Posted on February 21, 2013
      • Alice says:

        I like all comments, but I prefer the thoughtful ones, :) , and I think they stand out from the other ones.

        And I see that you updated this with some link-up links, and since some are very new to me, I’ll have to check them out. So thanks!

        Oh, I sometimes link up at justusfourblog.com – she has a Pinworthy link up party, that’s great for recipes and DIY,… if that’s something you or your readers would like. :)

        xx, Alice

        Posted on February 25, 2013
  12. Kristian says:

    Great ideas all. I’ve been considering the change to DISQUIS, but have also been wondering about the ease of being able to get to commenters’ blogs if they have them via that. Whether they have to include the link themselves, or if it is automatic like with blogger. But your post is inspiring me to find out!

    Posted on February 20, 2013
    • Lisa says:

      I know they used to allow comments as guests where you could enter your name and URL, and your name would link to that. I created a Disqus account because I like getting the notifications when someone has responded to my comment, and that also links my name to my URL. Not sure what happens when you log in through Twitter or Facebook.

      You might consider putting up a post when you switch and let readers know if they sign up for a Disqus account, it will link their name to their website and also notify them when they receive a response to their comment.

      Posted on February 21, 2013
  13. elizabeth says:

    I’ve never been able to participate in Twitter chats – I find it impossible to keep up and keep it under 140 characters – so I usually follow along silently. I defeats the purpose somewhat but what I lose in new followers, I gain in knowledge/insight.

    re Disqus: I appreciate its ease of use but as someone who guards her ‘cookies’ closely, you have to allow them in order to be able to comment on Disqus. I think Akismet is the best all around comment plugin.

    Posted on February 20, 2013
    • Lisa says:

      I guess you have to allow cookies so you don’t have to sign in each time you want to comment on a blog with Disqus? Maybe you could try turning them off when you comment?

      I thought Akismet was just for spam protection. I like it, but it tends to be overzealous and marks a lot of legit comments as spam. But it’s great with FV Antispam — since I installed it, the only comments that have landed in my spam box have been legit ones Akismet keeps marking as spam. But at least I don’t have to sort through hundreds of spambot comments to find the legit ones.

      Posted on February 21, 2013
  14. Gloria says:

    I’ve never done the whole Twitter chat thing, but BlogBrunch looks interesting!

    Posted on February 20, 2013
    • Lisa says:

      You should join — it’s fun! Always great discussions, I always leave with so many new ideas.

      Posted on February 21, 2013
  15. Jadyn says:

    Great post Lisa! I love your emphasis on being thoughtful and building relationships. I originally started blogging to connect with others and it’s a good reminder to keep that front and center because that’s what makes it fun and meaningful (to me anyway). I noticed a couple of other commenters also talked about Twitter. I’ve had an account for a few years, but just don’t really know how to use it. I think maybe I follow too many people and the tweets of the people I’m actually interested in get lost between all the other ones. Any tips on how to use Twitter would be awesome – although, maybe you’ve already done a post on it and I’ve missed it.

    Posted on February 20, 2013
    • Lisa says:

      Thanks Jadyn! I haven’t done a post on Twitter yet, but I think I will next week since so many people are asking about it.

      Yes, Twitter is definitely not as fun when the interesting tweets get lost in stuff you don’t want to read. I think the easiest thing is to just keep unfollowing people who aren’t interesting to you when they pop up in your feed, but you can also create lists for people you do want to follow.

      Posted on February 21, 2013
  16. I assume everyone who isn’t commenting on your blog is doing so because they can’t read the light grey font. And anyone who isn’t commenting on mine is intimidated by how worldly yet humble I am.

    j/k, except about the font. THE FONT.

    I don’t waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaanna Twitter. But you did make me realize that I spend a whole lotta time reading blogs written by people who probably don’t care about what I’m doing. Maybe I should actually spend some time participating in the photography blog community, since that’s basically what my blog is boiling down to these days. Brilliant post, as always.

    Posted on February 20, 2013
    • Lisa says:

      FINE, old lady, I changed it. Is that better? Don’t think this means you’re getting everything you ask for!

      If you and Mrs. Bachelor Girl want to team up and teach me how to take pretty pictures, I fully support that.

      Posted on February 21, 2013
      • I think it might actually be a little better. I still think I prefer the grey of your “cancel comment” font, but I’m not going to push too hard. For now. My eyes are getting older every day, though.

        Posted on February 21, 2013
  17. Hi Lisa,
    I am SO glad I found Elembree and your blog and I have already subscribed to your newsletter. While I’m a licensed artist by trade, I just started blogging to share projects but now I am interested in growing my audience. I think I need to start finding and participating in Link Ups. Thanks so much for the valuable information and I look forward to additional newsletters!

    Posted on February 20, 2013
    • Lisa says:

      Thank you! I’m sure there are link-ups for artists you can participate in, and connect with other artists.

      Posted on February 21, 2013
  18. Lisa, you always have such great and thoughtful advice! The blogkeeping posts are definitely why I always come back for more.

    Posted on February 20, 2013
    • Lisa says:

      Thank you so much!

      Posted on February 21, 2013
  19. Corinne says:

    I thought this was an interesting post, especially in that you’ve had experience with growing readership with comments, social media, etc. I’ve been trying a little of each and was starting to get skeptical that anyone actually saw any success with it. But I’ll definitely approach it differently after reading your article.

    Posted on February 20, 2013
    • Lisa says:

      It definitely takes time — these are things I have done over the past year and a half or so, and I wasn’t doing them all at once. I started just with commenting regularly on blogs I liked and checking out blogs of other commenters. Now a lot of my new connections come from Twitter. You definitely have to enjoy whichever method you choose to grow your blog and be consistent with it!

      Posted on February 21, 2013
  20. Lisa–thank you so so much for including Friday’s Fancies in this round-up. Like you said, link-ups help you find like-minded bloggers…and in the case of FF, the ladies are ridiculously amazing. The creativity blows my mind and their support of one another makes me grin like a proud mama. All of this to say, participating in a link-up but not being an active participant isn’t going to get you anywhere. The people who invest the time to visit other blogs through link-ups make much better connections with one another.

    You rock, Lisa. Thank you for putting this all out there. I truly can’t thank you enough for the shout-out…and as always with you, this series is spot-on. GENUINE COMMENTS, people. If you don’t have anything better than “cool post” to say, don’t say anything at all 😉 xoxo {av}

    P.S. If you’re hesitant to do a link-up, don’t be. It may be scary at first, but taking the plunge is totally worth it.

    Posted on February 20, 2013
    • Lisa says:

      You are totally right — you definitely get out of link-ups what you put into them! I think the fact that I do get new comments from little participation speaks volumes for the kind of community it truly is — I know several who do participate regularly and have formed great relationships that way. I think I had something to that effect originally in the post and edited before I got too wordy haha, but I’m glad you brought this up, because it is SO important — if you want to see real results that way, you have to put the effort into it.

      And YES — don’t be nervous to do a link-up!

      Posted on February 20, 2013
  21. Kat says:

    I love twitterchats and facebook groups for connecting – I think it is the real time conversation that I enjoy so much. I was always a loyal lurker – reading but never commenting – before I started my own blog, then I understood how much people really do like to connect in the comments.
    Really great advice, <3 your Blogkeeping series.

    Posted on February 20, 2013
    • Lisa says:

      Thank you Kat! I agree — the real time conversation is definitely the fun part of Twitter chats. I just started connecting with people on Facebook groups this year too, and while I’m not a fan of Facebook in general, the groups are a lot of fun!

      Posted on February 21, 2013
  22. kaley says:

    Thank you so much for these posts! I found your blog because of the blogkeeping series, and it has helped me so much. One question – what comment plugin do you use here? I love how clean it is and super easy to use.

    Posted on February 20, 2013
    • Lisa says:

      Thank you Kaley! I don’t actually use a comment plugin, I coded a custom design into my WordPress theme. Sorry I can’t be of more help on that!

      Posted on February 21, 2013
  23. Caroline says:

    These are awesome tips! Thanks so much!

    Posted on February 20, 2013
    • Lisa says:

      Thank you Caroline!

      Posted on February 21, 2013
  24. alicia says:

    Thanks for the tips. Do you have any suggestions for finding link-ups? I’m sure there are great ones out there that I just don’t know about, but I have no idea how to find them!

    Posted on February 20, 2013
    • Lisa says:

      I usually stumble upon them through the people participating, it just takes a lot of looking around and asking. I’ll ask on Twitter and see what others are participating in!

      Posted on February 21, 2013
  25. A very, very smart and true post Lisa! It’s all about community. networking, being active in the community and supporting each other. Some of the best connections I’ve made in the b logging community have been through commenting, connecting on social media, etc. One thing I have learned is that it doesn’t happen overnight. Many of today’s most popular bloggers worked hard over time to get there. I’ve also learned and truly believe that its not about being the most popular, but growing and nurturing a true and authentic readership and community. :)

    Posted on February 20, 2013
    • Lisa says:

      Thank you! Yeah, you can’t be all about the numbers, you won’t get anything out of it when you look at it that way.

      Posted on February 21, 2013
  26. Joelle says:

    Fantastic tips, as always Lisa! I completely agree that leaving thoughtful comments is the way to go. It’s so important that you just be yourself on your blog too! It’s so obvious when people are just trying to buy readers inauthentically.

    Thank you so much for the shout out! I really appreciate it :) xoxo

    Posted on February 20, 2013
    • Lisa says:

      So true! It’s like Jasmine Star said at Alt — readers connect with the blogger, not the blog.

      Posted on February 21, 2013
  27. Nicole says:

    Thank you so much for doing this post! I have had many questions about growth with in my blog and found your post to be very helpful. I have found with having a fashion focused blog that community is huge. I cant wait to keep following!

    XoXo,
    NIcole

    Posted on February 20, 2013
    • Lisa says:

      Thanks so much Nicole!

      Posted on February 21, 2013
  28. These are really great tips! Thank you! I’ve found that the first tip works REALLY well. It’s how I started slowly growing out of just a friends/family readership. I never knew about Twitter chats – that sounds so interesting and fun – would definitely love to check it out! :)

    Posted on February 21, 2013
    • Lisa says:

      I think commenting is really the best way to get started — the opportunity for discussion is right there! Definitely check out Twitter chats, they can be overwhelming at first but are a lot of fun, and I always learn from them.

      Posted on February 21, 2013
  29. I’ve made it my mission to respond to every single comment on my blog (as it appears you have, as well). I just figure if someone took the time to leave me a note, the LEAST I can do is respond with a thank you. And then, if I’ve got time, I love to hop over to their blog and leave a comment there. Some of my best bloggy buddies have been built that way. And I have SUCH faithful commenters. There’s a group of a dozen or so bloggers that will consistently comment on ALL of my posts…and I am so thankful for that. I feel the love from my community, and hopefully, I show that love back.

    I think today might be the day I join Twitter. I’ve been holding off, mostly because I didn’t think I had the time or even desire to open up a new account on a new form of social media. However, you and my friend Katie from Sew Woodsy, have both spoken about the connections you can form through Twitter…and that’s what has me intrigued. I’ll be sure to follow you if I do!

    And I like the idea of focusing your content toward one or two areas that you do really well. Like you, I’m not a niche blogger…but I’m thinking of focusing more on blogging tips as well as Silhouette projects in these next couple of months, and that might help me grow readership.

    Excellent and well-thought out post!

    Posted on February 21, 2013
    • Thank you Lauren! I admit, I don’t respond to every comment, but I do try to respond to all comments on this series since it is so discussion oriented.

      It definitely wouldn’t hurt to try Twitter, but I do think you’ll get more out of social media if you spend time on the ones you enjoy the most! If you end up loving Twitter, great! But if not, I wouldn’t worry about it — there are so many other ways to connect with people.

      Posted on February 21, 2013
  30. Lauren says:

    Lisa, I love your blogkeeping posts! They are so helpful and incredibly insightful. I look forward to reading them!

    Posted on February 22, 2013
  31. I absolutely love your Blogkeeping posts, so informative. Good point, I need to slow down and comment on the posts I enjoy…to my knowledge people can’t read my mind. Great post!

    Posted on February 23, 2013
  32. Bethany says:

    I always make sure that when I leave comments they are thoughtful and keeping the conversation going, but sometimes I totally underestimate how thoughtful my comments might be and instead of just commenting, I think “Not deep enough. I just won’t say anything.” I definitely need to work on that. I love your blog-keeping posts! Always so helpful!

    Posted on February 25, 2013
  33. becky says:

    I really love your comment about making it easy for readers to leave comments. I am on blogger and after reading your post, I checked to make sure my settings were set to make it easier for people to comment. There was no option for leave comment by “URL/name” and I have it set to “Registered Users/Including Open ID”. I wonder if this is best? I’m a little scared to set it to “Anonymous users”.
    Also want to comment on Av’s FRiday Fancies Link Up- I love this link up and also have seen more traffic and met amazing bloggers through this link up. I would recommend it to anyone looking to get out there more. This post is SO helpful.
    -Becky

    Posted on February 25, 2013
  34. Really loved your tips :) definitely commenting to your readers is important. Thanks also for including Happies and Crappies! We really appreciate it.

    Posted on February 25, 2013
  35. My blog is very young, only a few months, and I’ve definitely noticed that the returning visitors are bloggers who I’ve formed a relationship with. Still my blog is growing so slowly and I’ve heard it can take years to really grow significantly.

    Posted on February 26, 2013
  36. Kim says:

    Thank you so much for this post, I can’t tell you how helpful it is. We have wonderful readers on our blog and have redesigned to hopefully allow our readers to feel more comfortable to “participate and comment,” something that hasn’t been as active as we would like! I’m going to follow your tips as well and see if we can do some community building. Thanks so much!!

    Posted on March 4, 2013
  37. Amy says:

    Your Blogkeeping posts are so helpful to me! I just started a blog on Blogger a couple of weeks ago, and I am so overwhelmed with how much I don’t know. Right now, I am trying to focus on the whole Comment thing. This post, as well as many of the comments by your followers, made me realize that I have to go back and change some of my settings for comments (captcha, for one). I will be coming back to your Blogkeeping tips again and again for reference. I am in awe of all of the bloggers out there who make this look so easy! Thank you!

    Posted on March 30, 2013
  38. Holly says:

    Thanks for the tips! I just found this series via dailybuzz and I am LOVING it. As a new blogger who has been blog-obsessed for so long, it’s great to find a comprehensive guide for us newbies — especially when “big time” blogs are on the rise. It’s often intimidating to comment on a blog that is super popular/has hit the big time in the blog world, but this post is packed with encouragement. Thanks for sharing!

    Posted on March 31, 2013
  39. Wow, thank you for such awesome advice! I just added Disqus to my blog :) Next, I need to work on focusing on 1 or 2 things 😛 It’s hard! I love posting about everything I come across haha. #lifeofablogger

    Posted on June 3, 2013
  40. Kristen says:

    I’m so glad I stumbled across your blog! I’m trying to be more social and outreaching and have considered a link-up. But sometimes I feel too new and awkward in comparison to the “advanced” bloggers out there. I guess I should just bite the bullet and do it anyway! Thanks for posting this!

    Posted on March 16, 2014
  41. Melissa says:

    Great post! I’m so glad you mentioned the fact that not everyone is on Blogger. There are blogs that I follow and love and would love to leave comments however I’m not on Blogger and leaving a comment is pretty impossible.
    I’ve never heard of BlogBrunch, I’ll have to check it out. Thanks for all the great info!

    Posted on May 8, 2014

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