Just like all relatively new bloggers it’s an on-going challenge to get new readers let alone enthusiastic blog readers, so when they do arrive at my place (my blog) for the first time, I sure want to make sure they enjoy the experience.
When your blog visitors become blog readers that is a huge jump and something we must treat with excitement and enthusiasm.
What do you do to improve the experiences of your visitors and readers?
Let me know in the comments below as I'd love to know how you go about creating enthusiastic blog readers…and I'm sure my readers would as well.
In this post I’ll be sharing with you what I have been working on to attract and retain enthusiastic blog readers. You only get one chance to create a first impression with these first time readers.
So it’s super important that we do everything we can to engage them, make them feel welcome and provide an experience where they feel some sort of connection with you.
Our future as a viable blogger is dependent on our ability to create a community of enthusiastic blog readers.
To create enthusiastic blog readers will take lots of effort but we can put in place specific things that will encourage our first time readers to maybe subscribe with us, come back and visit with us and, over time, become a loyal and enthusiastic blog reader.
I am constantly reminded of a comment left on one of my recent blog posts by one of my mentors, Don Purdum who said “According to report by Google in 2012, it on average takes 10.6 pieces of content before someone initiates engagement with you. That could be a comment, opt-in or a purchase. That means our content has to be worth someone continually coming back for.”
Why Enthusiastic Blog Readers are So Special?
Enthusiastic blog readers keep coming back for more, add to the value your content with their comments and will not only consider you as being competent but also someone who provides valuable relevant content that they are excited to share with the world.
Be careful never take your blog readers for granted as they will be the backbone of your blog business. Treat your readers as valued guests and try to give them a sense of “shared ownership” of your content.
The following are ways I have tried to make the experience of visiting my place enjoyable, memorable and one that will hopefully create enthusiastic blog readers.
1.Write Your Posts As a Conversation
Wrire (or create a video/audio) just as if you were talking to a particular person. Sounds a bit goofy I know but when I am writing a post I have an image of my target blog reader sitting on my desk next to me.
In this way I try to make sure I can engage you as a reader, interest you in what I have to share and often ask you a question just as you would in a normal conversation with a friend.
Be friendly and not aloof. Show your readers that you understand and never be afraid to share your own experiences. Just like meeting new friends you must show you are interested in them. Take your time to build trust and rapport – it doesn't happen overnight!
Does this make sense?
2. Always be Grateful and Thankful
Every blog visitor and blog reader is a person. So make sure you treat them that way. People these days are so busy and there are so many other things competing for their time so show that you appreciate them at every chance you get.
If you care to comment on this post (and I hope you do) you will notice the first thing I say when it comes to “Your Turn” is “I know how busy you must be so many thanks for your comments.”
3. Create Your Own Personal Brand and Style
Apart from sharing your thoughts and experiences, come up with your own personal branding.
Think about what makes you different? What something special can you bring to the conversation? Remember we are all about ccreating a memorable experience for your blog readers.
Do you have a tagline for your blog?
Did you see my blog tagline? It’s “The Village Marketer Who Cares”
Do you have a signature at the bottom of your blog post comments or your blog posts?
I usually add the following to all my comments “Best wishes from a remote Thai village blogger” – this alone has encouraged some readers to seek me out as they are curious about some blogger based in a isolated village in Thailand.
When we go about creating enthusiastic blog readers we first have to become memorable is some way.
I use my isolated position in the world plus the fact that I really do care for people, as my way of differentiating me and making visits to my “place” enjoyable and hopefully memorable one.
Speaking of “My Place” I use this term a lot rather than “My Blog” or “My website” as I want my visitors and readers to know and feel that they are visiting MY HOME online. Because that's exactlywhat you are doing right now. Welcome to my home!
4. Always Be Asking For Feedback.
Make sure you tell your readers that their thoughts are very much appreciated. Make them feel part of the whole conversation and do whatever you can to further promote the discussion, not just in the comment area of your blog but also in the sharing of your posts on social media.
Have call-to-actions spread throughout your post to ensure your readers have every chance to follow up with the blog post conversation you have created.
Just like this one
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5. Give “Shout-Outs” to Your Blog Readers
One thing I have discovered that leads to enthusiastic blog readers is to give a “shout-out” to one of your blog post readers. Maybe mention them within your post if they have created content that adds to what you have created.
One other thing I do is if there is a comment on the post that I feel is extremely valuable, then I will edit the post and add an “Update” to the end of the post showing the comment with a link to their website. Here's an example from one of my blogging mentors, Adrienne Smith, so just scroll down to the bottom of the post if you're short of time and you'll see what I mean.
Some folks actually designate comments as “Featured Comments” if they feel the comment is of special value to their post. I have been fortunate enough to have had some of my comments highlighted like this and it sure did make me an enthusiastic reader of that particular blog. Human nature!
6. Respond to Your Blog Reader's Comments
Always, always , always reply to your comments so that your readers know that you value the time and value they shared. Make them feel special by not just replying to their comments but at both the beginning and end of your comment, thanking them by name.
In fact replying to your blog comments is just as important as the blog post itself when it comes to engagement and creating enthusiastic blog readers.
7. Comment On Your Readers Blog Posts
This sounds like common sense but way too many bloggers not only don’t reply to comments left on their posts (which I find unforgiveable and such a huge loss of opportunity when it comes to building relationships) but they also fail to visit the blogs of their readers and leave a meaningful comment on their posts.
I must admit sometimes I do go overboard a bit here when it comes to commenting on other blogger’s posts but my enthusiasm takes over and often results in a “blog post” sized comment.
Check it out as I did go “overboard with my enthusiasm” but you’ll enjoy this post as well from my friend Kim Willis.
Whatever, I’m sure the blog owner appreciates the effort I made and to be honest, this approach has also enabled me to capture some enthusiastic blog readers.
8. Pro-actively Show Your Blog Readers You Care
Don’t wait for them to visit and comment on your posts. Spend just 30 minutes to go out of your way to surprise your blog readers. Think about ways you can link to them, tweet their posts and share their content.
Tweeting about my reader’s posts has been an amazing revelation for me.
A few months ago I started tweeting my reader’s blog posts using my own words (not the pre-written stuff) and the feedback has been awesome.
Not only that folks have retweeted and come to visit my place as well.
How do you feel when all of a sudden, out of the blue, you see your posts being tweeted everywhere? It’s a great feeling and one I know your readers would also love you for doing the same for them.
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I know how busy you must be so many thanks for your comments.
Care to share what has worked for you when it comes to creating enthusiastic blog readers?
I’m not very technical but do you use any sort of special software to help you with building engagement with your readers?
I know there are widgets that you can add to your wordpress blog sidebar that shows photos of your most supportive blog readers. If you have this care to share how its working for you? Does it help build enthusiastic blog readers?
I look forward as always to your comments as they are very much an appreciated vital part of the value of this post.
All the best from a remote Thai village blogger