This is the second day I am waking up at around 7 AM! Whoo-hoo! I just hope this becomes a practice and I can start using my time more productively!
On to the topic now: Of late, I have noticed I get new followers on this blog almost on an everyday basis! It’s mostly one of two people who join me daily, but it’s a steady stream of new followers, which makes me quite happy! 🙂 A big thank you to all of you (old and new) for having faith in my content and being part of my journey.
Having said that, there was a time when I was really obsessed about this blog. I wanted to get as many followers as I could. In fact, there was a point when I was frustrated that people were following me, but they were not being part of my journey (follower count increased, but not the engagement on each post, in the form of likes and comments). Now, when I look back at that post, I think it was insensitive; but in my defense I was young and full of naivety.
I am approximately three years into blogging career in WordPress. My follower count, from WordPress, is at 411. It is probably not much for a three year career, but when you think of four hundred people in a room – well, that’s a lot of people! So, today, I wanted to give back to the community and talk about what makes this steady stream of people come to your platform and stick to you:
- Understand the genre of your blog: Certain genres will do better than others. There was one time in college when I was turning every possible acquaintance to a blogger. That time, I turned my then roommate into a photography blogger; she used to travel a lot and take photographs and she was sure good at it. Her blog grew faster than mine at the time. So, understand what your genre is – if it is a slow or a fast one. If your blog is growing slowly, it does not necessarily mean you are doing something wrong. It could be just the genre!
- Be consistent: In the last three years, lot has happened in my life. I finished college, moved to a new city to start a new career and have spent almost 2.5 years working that job. My priorities changed from electronics to analytics to financial stability to making YouTube videos. However, one thing that has stayed consistent is my blogging habit. There have been low points, some months which have just one blog-post, but I think I can proudly say that I have not missed one month of blogging in the last three years. New folks that follow your channel will look at your recent behavior before they hit that follow button, because nobody wants to follow a high quality but dead channel that’s not been updated in a year (I do that!).
- Follow a schedule (or not): One of the ways to becoming consistent is to maintain some sort of a schedule. I did follow one for some time, posting twice a week. It worked for a while and then didn’t. However, for me, I start missing this platform if I am been away for a long time, so I keep coming back. But if you are new, some sort of schedule surely helps. Make sure you also keep your readers aware of the schedule, so they know when to come back! Think of it like your favorite TV show, you know when to sit in front of it whenever it is aired, right?
- The viral post: There’s always that one post which goes viral. Some go viral instantly, others build up a huge % viewership over time. In my case, this post on five magazines to publish writings in India has remained the top read post of all times. I started off as a blogger for writers, and this was written during that time. The nice thing about such viral posts is that they over time, they start appearing on Google search also. Most of the search keywords that lead to my channel are around magazines to submit writings. So how do you create such viral posts? In my experience, things which help people or entertain them are the ones which people find useful and worth coming back to. There is one other post that I published after my last day of college, which has pictures of me and the things my friends wrote on my shirt on the final day. College kids still search for things to write on shirts on the last day of college and come to my blog! Viral posts are great, but make sure you’re not working just towards creating those! In fact all of my top read posts were written from a heartfelt need to write them. I never knew that the post of five magazines would be my best read post when I was writing it. Also, viral views might not necessarily lead to long term engagement. I am pretty sure 99% of people who come to this blog because of the five magazines post, do not subscribe to the blog
- SEO: Search Engine Optimization – this is very crucial. It helps WordPress/search engines what your post is all about, so make sure that you use the Categories and Tags features in WordPress. I have seen genuine benefit in that
- Socialize your blog: A good chunk of my viewership comes from my Facebook, LinkedIn. All my posts are auto-set to be shown on these platforms as soon as I hit the publish button. So, if you are in other social media, make sure to socialize your posts there.
So, that concludes today’s post. I will keep adding to this, if I can think of something new. Hope you guys find something to learn in this and use that to your advantage.
Good luck and I will see you guys in my next post!