Welcome friends to a new series on the blog.
#BlogTipTuesday is going to be a way for me to share some great info with you about blogging. Things I have learned and want to share, things to inspire or motivate us to be a better bloggers. I am by no means a perfect blogger, but I have learned a LOT about blogging in the past year and continue to learn. I recently did two blogging posts 5 Essential Blogging Tools that I would Die Without and How to Magnify Your Google Adsense Earnings with this One Simple Trick and in return I have been emailed by several to continue sharing what I have learned. So I thought this would be a fun way to to do it!
So today we are going to talk about something that is KEY to building a successful blog. Your Readers!
Today I was in a class on Fizzle (If you are not a part of that community, YOU ARE MISSING OUT!) and I had to pause the class and really think. I was inspired and at the same time worried. It made me really think about how I blog and what I do for my readers. It made me anxious AND definitely gave me a cause to start making some blogging adjustments.
(Click the image to check it out, this is my affiliate link, so if you do decide to stay on as a member I will make no money lol…but I will get a discount on my monthly rate. Thank you for that! Let me know if you do join, even for the month so we can chat Fizzle stuff together!! You can also read a little more about my thoughts on Fizzle here.)
Ok back to this post…
I was listening to the course How to Create Effective and Engaging Content and within 10 minutes, my mind was blown.
“What are you doing to put your readers first?”….I thought, then I panicked! OMG do my readers think I put myself first?
As a blogger we thrive on people reading our content, sharing our content and leaving comments with feedback and the occasional..OMG YOUR POST CHANGED MY LIFE emails! Isn’t that what we aim for as bloggers. To leave a profound mark in our readers minds?
But somewhere along the way we may get caught up in all the blogging mumbo jumbo and start putting ourselves first. Answer these two questions…(don’t read ahead until you have answered them)
1. What is the first thing your reader wants to do when they come to your site?
2. What is the first thing YOU want the reader to do when they come to your site?
Was your answer the same for both questions. I doubt it. BUT IT SHOULD BE! When a reader comes to your site, they come to read a post that drew them in. They want to learn something that will solve their problem. They want to feel welcomed and inspired. (Ok, maybe that last part is how I want them to feel, but I have big dreams for my readers).
I bet most, not all, but most of us have this blogging mindset “I want my reader to come, pin ALL of my images, add me on EVERY social network, join my mailing list..and so on”. Am I right or am I right? Well of course we all want that, but it should NOT be the only impression your reader gets when they stop by. Especially for the first time. This is something I was 100% guilty of when I first started blogging. I was so worried about my stats, that I didn’t care if it bothered anyone….as long as they signed up, or followed me on Twitter. I was consumed.
Think about what happens to your brain when you go to a blog to read a LIFE CHANGING post you found on Pinterest. Only to be greeted with those dang pop ups asking you to join their mailing list, when you don’t even know them yet..or better yet a HUGE full page ad! People who are not bloggers do not understand why we are doing it and they tend to get annoyed. (sorry if this is you)
Right off the bat you lost your readers engagement. They came for content and you blocked them from seeing it. You also broke their trust. Maybe not a ton, but a little and do you know how hard it is to gain someones trust back after you lost it? Isn’t it easier to make them trust you right away, and encourage them to stick around by just being yourself and providing them with engaging content?
If you have that “subscribe” pop up… it might increase your mailing list stats for the time being, but it can also decrease the amount of loyal readers..and in a week when they get your email there is a good chance they will unsubscribe or mark you as spam. EEK! Or never finish the subscribing method..so who is it benefiting..you or them?
Put your “join my mailing list” in your sidebar. Most people know how to find it and if the person LOVES your blog, they will look for it. You can even put it at the end of your posts if it makes you feel better…but let them get to know you and engage before you ask them to do something for YOU.
We want to make our readers feel like friends, I know I do anyway. I want them to stop by and think, WOW she is someone I could see myself hanging out with. That is how I feel about the bloggers who I follow. I get excited when I see an email from them because I know it will be something fun to read and keep me engaged.
- Get your readers engaged before you ask them for anything.
- Don’t ask them for something before you offer them something, for instance..great content.
So think about this question and spend some time on your blog as a reader!
“What are some things you are doing on your site that meet YOUR needs, rather than your READERS needs?”