An Open Letter to New WordPress Bloggers

Dear New WordPress Bloggers,

Thank you so much for following my blog! I’m so glad you’ve decided to become a part of my blogging community. Or have you…

an-open-letter-to-new-wordpress-bloggersA few of you left comments. You are so good at what you do! That’s exactly how you build a blogging community. You are on your way to being a successful blogger. I always respond and try to stop by your blogs to read and comment. Here’s the thing: Most new blog followers never stop by the Wild Ride. EVER. 

Some new bloggers have an itchy index finger. They click to “Recommended,” and hit “Follow, Follow, Follow,…” all the way down the list. How do they handle so many new email notifications? They probably turn them off. What about the Reader? It may resemble a Twitter feed when following thousands. Whoosh!

A properly built WordPress blog is structured with real connections with other bloggers and readers. It is strengthened by getting to know others. Reciprocating doesn’t mean, “Ha! You followed me back, sucker! You’ll never see me again!” It means taking the time to reach out to those who make the effort to read your words.

You may confuse blogging with Instagram or Twitter.

It takes a minute to pick out a photo, edit it, and add hashtags on Instagram. Okay, maybe two. Twitter takes even less time. We plow through our feeds and can engage with followers or not. There’s very little time investment on either side. With so much in our feeds, about one-hundredth of the people who follow us may see our posts before they slip to oblivion. On those sites, users follow for followbacks. I get that.

For most bloggers, posts take an hour and sometimes days to polish before blogging them publicly. (Or they should since no one wants to read poorly written garbage.) We may add carefully edited photos or video which takes even more time. Our site is a living room where we welcome strangers to sit down on our favorite couch with a cuppa joe or tea and stretch out while we share our wild lives and then open it up for discussion.

The WordPress Reader makes it easy for you to take a look at our latest posts. (It’s right up there on the left side of the black bar.) Bonus! Views from the Reader and Likes are being counted, as of last week. That’s such a huge relief since I want to know if my posts are hits or big time misses to the sound of crickets. I’m always learning too.

You should ask yourself this question:

Why do I want to be a blogger? To become famous and spew? To build an author’s platform? To sell books?  To make money? Those are all end-games. Blogging for results will get you nowhere.

Instead, focus on the path of writing what you are passionate about and you will see results. It’s all about practice and community building.

Follow blogs without the expectation of a followback. Writing books and screenplays takes most of my time, but I still make the effort to stop by, read, and say hello when I can. That’s how I’ve built my community.

I follow four hundred people. Some don’t follow me. I read them like the newspaper or a magazine. Newspapers and magazines don’t follow me either… yet.

Don’t build a flimsy blog. No one wants to post in a headwind so strong no one hears your voice. You may get frustrated. After a few months, you may quit. That would be a total bummer.

Build a strong blogging community and you will get to know other bloggers pretty well. You might even meet them in real life. They may help you when you are sick, even if they live halfway around the world. They aren’t just another avatar or a number. They are real. They could be your people in your community if you build it correctly. The best part of blogging is the instant gratification of interaction. I love my blog. Have fun with it, communicate with others, and you will too!

I hope that helps you in your first year of blogging. If you need any other help, tips, or guidance, I’m always here at the Wild Ride. Yee Haa!

Wishing you the best of luck in your blogging journey,

Susie Lindau – AKA – Wild Rider

An Open Letter to New Bloggers

P.S. Here are some other blog tips and tricks:

Wild Rider Magazine – Crush Procrastination and Boost Your Blog

Blogging Tips from a Wild Rider – How to Hook Readers

Why Blog And What the Heck is a Writer’s Platform?

Do you see a pattern of follows and unfollows? What are you doing to build community that could help others? Do you follow a lot of blogs?

335 thoughts on “An Open Letter to New WordPress Bloggers

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    1. I write what I’m passionate about which is a large variety of subjects. Recently, they are bent toward inspiration in some way. I stay away from politics and religion though. Some are hits and some misses. Some people focus their blogs on one thing. I don’t. I write about my crazy wild adventures! Click on “Home,” and you’ll see what I mean!
      Thanks so much!

      Like

    1. I will! Thanks for hanging out in my living room for a while!
      You don’t have to post your link since I can click through your name. WordPress is cool like that. That’s why I tell bloggers to leave a comment. I always see where others stop by and click to your blogs. 🙂

      Like

  1. Love this post… I started blogging to develop more connectons in my life, and I’ve been fascinated with how some of this world operates. It’s been especially interesting to see how people think that “canned” comments really do much good. I always try to take the time to add thoughtful comments on people’s posts, which I think really means something. We just don’t take the time anymore for many things. In any event, I came across your blog in Discover and I’m looking forward to checking out more of your posts!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Wow! Thank you so much, NS!
      Sometimes those “canned comments” are spam. You have to be careful or your blog will be overrun with them! One time, I didn’t catch one, and my Aruba post became a site where they pitched their tent and camped out for a couple of weeks! After putting all of them in spam, Askimet finally learned and they packed up and left the beach. I do get comments where it’s obvious they didn’t read. I still am glad they stopped by. As long as they take something with them that’s not misconstrued. Ha!

      Like

  2. Hey Susie! This was great insight into the blogging world. I started actively blogging about a month ago just to cope with a lot of change that was going on in my life after moving to a new country. I don’t follow a whole lot of blogs and don’t have many followers myself just yet but I feel that I can really connect to the bloggers that I do follow and relate to different aspects of their lives 🙂 it’s funny how blogging can make you feel like you are surrounded by friends who are actually strangers living across the world xx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. They actually DO become real friends. I’ve met quite a few of my blogging friends in real life and they are the BEST! Some have reached out when a loved one is sick and we’ve banded together in support through Facebook PMs. I think they may get to know us better in some ways. I notice a lot of my acquaintances mask how they feel and we never really connect on a deeper level. Here, bloggers are more likely to share their deepest feelings.
      One of my dreams is to travel the world to meet up with more of them!
      Thanks so much, Dimi!

      Like

  3. Yes, I just started blogging regularly since I joined WordPress probably 2 weeks ago.

    My WordPress blog is: foreignloveweb.wordpress.com.

    I am going to upgrade to Premium mebership and change the blog web address.

    Thanks for the info, Susie. I am going to read your other blog post “Blogging Tips…”.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh, great! Make sure to link your name to your updated blog too. People click to your blog through it. That way you don’t need to add your link to your comment. WP does it for you!
      The Premium membership is great. You’ll enjoy the direct line to Happiness Engineer support. I also got my own web address with my name since I’m going for name recognition in the hopes that will help sell books someday!
      Thanks for stopping by! I write a smattering of subject matter, but usually include tips once a month. One is coming up about Twitter and why bloggers should have an account.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. This is so helpful, thank you! I’ve only done two posts so far, hoping to do a 3rd, and slightly more thought provoking, post this weekend that I’m polishing up right now. I just took notes from this post… I really appreciate the advice! I created a “template” of sorts of how my future posts will look (or be patterned) so readers will know what to expect when they click. So far so good, it’s a great outlet, a great teaching tool and the sense of community here was not something I expected! Thanks again! -Marie

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You are so organized! I wing it every since I write how I talk. I pretty much dictate my first drafts.
      When I started blogging, I had hardly typed over the last two decades. I suffered over every word. As I got faster and I learned cut and paste, IT GOT SO MUCH EASIER! The idea is to have fun with it. Blog posts only last a day or two. Whether I spend a ton of time or whip it out, they usually get the same number of views. This one blew up!
      Nice to meet you!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. I agree wholeheartedly. I never like a post unless I’ve read it and like it. I never follow a blog unless I’m genuinely interested in reading. It irks me when someone follows, unfollows, forgets they already once followed me, and then refollows me. Chaps my ass, I tell ya!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Me too! I was Freshly Pressed a while back and there was one blogger who would like and unlike the post several times a day. There was no way I would follow them. After several weeks of this, they finally gave up!
      Thanks for stopping by from Twitter!

      Liked by 1 person

  6. […] whom I featured as a Blog to Love in December, posted an An Open Letter to New WordPress Bloggers.
    It would be awesome if you would contribute some tips to my page.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. I loved reading this so much! I have posted to my new blog yet but making my rounds in the blogging community since I haven’t been around in awhile. It is so true taking the time to get to know other bloggers makes a big difference!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. “Follow blogs without the expectation of a followback. Writing books and screenplays takes most of my time, but I still make the effort to stop by, read, and say hello when I can. That’s how I’ve built my community”

    Yes we try hard.. very hard but none of us are superwomen or men 🙂

    Like

    1. That’s exactly how it works! Open Salon was ridiculous with its followbacks in likes to be seen in the Reader. I’m so glad it’s not that intense here!
      I didn’t see this comment until today. Ha!

      Like

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