Now before everyone goes off on me about selling your blogging soul to the highest bidder out there I am not referring to anything like PayPerPost; or whatever they are calling themselves this week, or other thinly disguised ad companies. What I am talking about is something much better than that over the longer haul and can be rewarding in a good way when you see you visitor counts slowly climb.
Quite a few folks will point you to getting yourself up on digg.com, getting pegged by a StumbleUpon user, or even more old school get tagged by the slashdot crowd. While any of those ways are great – if you get any momentum – but they are spike traffic and in most cases don’t bring any long lasting repeat visitors. Instead what I would suggest is a combination of two things.
The first thing is the old writing a post about something that gets your passionate creative juices flowing and adds to a conversation already going on in the blogosphere. It is important to remember that you need to be really adding to the conversation and not just fluff. You can add to it by bring a new and different perspective, or by being able to relate experiences that are directly connected in one fashion or another to the conversation.
Now comes the tricky part because it requires a little bit of patience and is best related by a real experience that I had over the weekend that gave me the idea for doing this in the future.
Late Friday; or was it early Saturday morning .. anyway I had finished up reading feeds and didn’t have anything to write about so I figured I’d make a coffee and check through the WinExtra Forums to see what was happening on my home turf. That is when I saw a post by Bill (thanks bud) titled XP Upgrade so I figured what the heck lets go have a read. As result I stumbled into a joy of a post that was written so well with the right amount of humor that you couldn’t stop reading. As it turns out it was about a blogger who had upgraded to XP from his Vista machines.
Simply priceless especially considering the problems I was having with Vista at the time. Problems that I had just finished writing about earlier. So I figured what the hell I’d post a comment to the blogger behind Coding Sanity (which BTW is a great blog) about how Vista’s SP1 RC1 install wasn’t going to be a cure all and then linked back to my post. Once done off I went to doing something else.
A while later I decided to do a stats check to see if the original post was getting any traction. To my surprise it was – and a lot. In fact that story was getting the majority of the hits and of that the most were coming from the link on Coding Sanity. The effect was so good that I figured to do a little exploring of some of the folks that had linked to the same Coding Sanity post prior and after I did. When I found a couple that I felt my post on the matter was relevant I posted a comment with a link back to my post.
Anyway to cut this a little short here is some figures. I originally posted my story at 2:45 AM Saturday morning and commented on Coding Sanity at 9:19 AM and not even an hour later the hits were coming in. Now after my couple of additional comments made elsewhere I laid down for a few hours (and no I don’t sleep much ). Go forward to late Sunday evening and what the 24hr count was.
My original post in approximately 24hrs got just under 1,800 hits of which 1,359 came as a result of my comment on Coding Sanity. The rest of the hits for the post came from regular readers and the other couple of comments I left on other blogs. The real beauty though was that those folks stayed and read other posts which almost never happens from digg.com and the like visitors. Plus there was an increase in the RSS feed count which is always a nice bonus.
The thing that I learned from this is that if you have a post you believe in and feel it adds to the conversation then get out there and sell it. Not a hard sell but more of a soft sell approach. Leave a comment on the blog post that sparked your creative juices and then check out some of the other commenter’s – especially if you have never been to their blogs before (I picked up a couple of good blogs through all this) and again if you think that your post adds to their post then comment.
You have to be careful though and not over do this type of thing or get carried away with useless type comments just so you can leave a link. That will really irritate your fellow bloggers and could give you a bad name. If you do with the intent to add to a conversation then there is nothing wrong with that after all your aren’t the only one looking for new blogs to read this way.
So as much as being a blogger is about writing those posts it is also be about getting out there as part of creating that post and sell it .. sell it to other readers on other blogs but is such a way that it also adds to the blog you are commenting on. A combination of a compelling post that you are commenting on which links back to your passionate post which adds value to the chain is the key. When I commented on Coding Sanity I wasn’t looking at its popularity – I was reacting to an excellent post which I felt my post would add to – nothing more – nothing less.
Like all tips and hints though you will only get out of it what you put in. For me the extra time spent checking out commenter link and leaving comments where they feel right is a part of the job. Not only do I attract new readers to my own blog but I also find new streams of information. You do that enough times in your daily blogging ritual and you come away a winner in more than one way.
Hey, like this post? Why not share it with a buddy?Tweet