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

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?

Drop and Hop for New Followers, If You Dare…

Boston graveyard

Want new followers? The party starts right now. It will be fast and fun. Speed is good especially when zombies may lurk and your name is whispered by the wind. OooOOoooOOOoooo…..

DROP a link to your blog in the comments, including a pitch, describing what you write about.

haunted drop and hop

HOP to other blogs and check them out. Like what you see? Subscribe. Want them to know you came from the Drop and Hop Party? Tell them, “Susie sent me,” and they should click back to your haunt.

Blast this link on Twitter and Facebook or whatever flavor social media you prefer. The more that participate, the more followers you will gain.

The witch’s brew is bubbling and the finger sandwiches are fresh. The barista can make anything you like. The bar is always open.

The party will last as long as the ever living dead, so stop by anytime. 

Enjoy!

Please consider following my blog too, or else…. *insert cackle here*

 

Drop and Hop! A new way to gain followers.

DJ KSmash

Ready to gain new followers? The party starts right now. It will be fast and fun. It’s like speed-dating for blog followers!

DROP a link to your blog in my comments and include a pitch that describes what you write about.

Example:

“Susie Lindau’s Wild Ride” is about my wild Colorado adventures. You’ll find photos, humor and what’s it like to be a Wild Rider who has faced a few challenges. “Bring it on, life!” is my mantra. http://susielindau.com

HOP to other blogs and check them out. Like what you see? Subscribe. Want them to know you came from the Drop and Hop Party? Leave a comment on one of their blog posts or come back here and comment on their pitch.

Blast this link out on Twitter and Facebook or whatever flavor social media you prefer. The more that participate, the more followers you will gain.

The freshest bakery has been flown in from France and the tables are laden with buffet-style brunch. The barista can make anything you like. The bar is always open.

Enjoy!

My son, DJ KSmash, is in the house, so don’t forget to dance!

Free download:

Thanks for stopping by the Wild Ride! I hope you’ll follow my blog.

Click to follow my Wild Tweets here – @susielindau and Susie Lindau’s Wild Ride on Facebook. I post photos on Instagram at Susie_Lindau.

Heads UP! Something New for You.

head's up

So you’re a blogger and your stats are down, your regular commenters seem to be on vacation and your steady stream of followers has dried up to a trickle.

Two reasons why:

  1. We’re all busy. There’s a lot of competition out there.
  2. WP Engineers pulled the “You May Like” from alongside the “Blogs I Follow” in the Reader. This is the first crack down on Spam Following. There may be more to come. Lots of scalawags were abusing the system. Have you seen brand new bloggers with over a thousand likes on one post? I have. They “spam follow” thousands to get tons of views and follow-backs.

So how can I help you? Continue reading

Do You Want More Followers?

When we receive an email alerting us that someone has subscribed to our blog, it’s exciting. Later when publishing a post, we hope to see the see those new friendly little gravatars pop up in “likes” or “comments.” Most are never seen again. They disappear like Oreos at a Bronco training table.

No one wants to feel like the guy with the microphone speaking to an empty room.

“Hello?” *tap*tap*tap* “Hello?”

I’ve discovered a secret.

You need to meet people. REAL people. Introduce yourself and check each other out. Chat a while. Go to each other’s place and chill. Or better yet, DANCE!

“Where can I do that?” you ask, “I live on an island off the coast of Newfoundland. I haven’t seen anyone for days.”

At another Use Me and Abuse Me Day this Thursday, August 22nd! It’s where all my friends come to meet up, hook up and if it works out, subscribe.

DJ Wild Rider in the House

Yeah baby. Rest up. It’s going to be another rager!

Are you ready to party?

Photo taken by Susie Lindau in front of the Hotel de Ville in Paris, France with a Sony Nex 3N