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Live Beautiful | Courtney Kirkland: Blogging Effectively-Part Two

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Blogging Effectively-Part Two

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Live Beautiful | Courtney Kirkland: Blogging Effectively-Part Two

Live Beautiful | Courtney Kirkland

November 22, 2010

Blogging Effectively-Part Two

effectivewithintegrityWelcome back to Day Two of my Blogging Effectively with Integrity series. It’s also Monday which means it’s time for No Mom Talk for those of you who will be linking up. In case you missed any of the series so far, you can find the introduction post here and Part One here. The response to the first two days have been overwhelming and I’m really excited that you guys are so interested in this series.



Today I’m going to talk about the power of the all-mighty Social Media. Twitter, Facebook, even MySpace [for those who still use it] can be powerful tools for marketing and building up your blog readership and interest.

At the end of my Introductory Post to this series, I asked what brought people back to a blog over and over again. Everyone who commented answered that question, but I was startled by how many others also mentioned something about the number of comments on their blog verses the number of followers. This is something that irks me at times as well. I see growing followers, but receive few-if any-comments on some of my posts. Today I want to talk about utilizing social media to its fullest…taking advantage of all that it has to offer to draw in your readership.

First, let’s talk about Twitter. I know that some of you have yet to sign up for an account with Twitter. And that’s okay. I completely and totally get it. I refused to sign up for it as well when it first started up. I couldn’t understand the purpose behind telling the world in 140 characters or less what you were doing. And truthfully, I just assumed it was “cool” because Ashton Kutcher had an account.  It wasn’t until earlier this year that I caved and signed up for an account. In the beginning, I rarely ever used it. I would tweet once or twice, but really didn’t think anyone had any interest in what I had to say.

Then I started to notice how many other bloggers that I followed on Twitter were linking their posts. And I started paying attention to how often I clicked on those posts. It was not unusual for me to go to at least five or six different posts a day just through Twitter. Because of the interest their tweets piqued.

Blogging is all about interaction. If we didn’t care about the interaction, then we wouldn’t make our blogs public. We wouldn’t join networks and communities in the hopes that other people would show interest in what we had to say. We want the feedback. We desire the comments. And that’s okay. But in order to obtain those comments and that readership, we have to learn to develop a dialogue with other readers. Twitter is very powerful commodity to bloggers if we learn to use it effectively. Which one of these tweets sounds more enticing:



New Blog Post: http://www.pretendblogposthere.com You should check it out…

or this:

Interesting Discussion today on saving a dying marriage…how we made it through trial & turmoil: www.anotherfakeblogpost.com

{Okay, these are really bad examples, but you get the point} Most likely, you would click on the second link just because it piqued your curiosity. You’d be wondering what on Earth had happened to the imaginary couple to cause their marriage to die…and you’d want to know how they overcame it. Simply linking a blog post isn’t enough. You need to give your readers something to look forward to…a reason to click on your link. Thousands upon thousands of tweets go up every few minutes, so say something that makes yours stand out.

Twitter is also a two way street. It’s a give and take relationship. You can’t sign on and tweet to your hearts desire and expect everyone to just flock to you without reason [unless of course you ARE Ashton Kutcher…and if you are would you please say hi to me. It would really make my day]. You need to form a dialogue. Say ‘hi’ to someone. Reply to a tweet…mention someone else’s blog…re-tweet a link…do SOMETHING to show your fellow Tweeter that you aren’t in this little online society just for yourself. Everyone else out there is seeking some communication; and most of your fellow mommy bloggers would be thrilled for you to re-tweet their post or their blog link. You’d be amazed at the results you will see if you put in the few minutes of extra effort. There is a difference between interacting and engaging with your followers and fellow Tweet mates {if that is even a Twitter term…I made it up…I think…} and just shooting off your own content all day long, day after day.

The other widely popular choice of Social Media is Facebook. First and foremost let me mention right to start off with that you don’t have to use your personal profile for blogging if you don’t want to. You can set up a Fan Page [and you can find mine here] so that your readers/followers/etc. can “like” you without ever having contact with your personal account. As for me, I have both. I have a fan-page where people can read my content should they choose, but I also link my blog to my personal page. I’ve found that, while many readers who come from my Personal Page on Facebook don’t comment, my readership has grown past just the blog world. Friends from across the country that we have lost contact with turn to my blog to keep track of what’s going on with us. Many of them even comment on the link within my Facebook Profile. So don’t think that just because someone doesn’t have a blog that they aren’t reading. You’d be surprised how many others would be interested in what you have to say.

Similarly, if someone “likes” you on Facebook…that tiny little link with your blog name shows up on their Facebook Profile. This is another widely growing networking tool. Facebook also started their “Share” feature [which is much like the Re-Tweet feature on Twitter] that allows for readers to post your content on their blog and share it with their own Facebook Friends. Furthermore, they can even “share” your content on Twitter…all the more reason to make sure that your blog is set up to post to that Facebook Account.


Building up a readership takes a lot of work. It isn’t something that is going to happen automatically, so don’t expect drastic changes overnight. But, if you work at this, put in just a few extra minutes a day to carry on a short Twitter Chat with a fellow blogger, you will be amazed at the growth you will begin to see gradually. A personal example. A few months ago, my blog count [followers] was sitting solidly at 235. I was frustrated because I felt I was putting out some really good content, but no one was really responding. One day, after Little Man had been sick for about a week, I decided to take a household vacation. The little guy and I vegged out on the couch and watched movies all day. I kept my computer close by because I am an addict and couldn’t help myself we were waiting on the Hubby to call and chat. Throughout the day, I found myself responding to more and more Twitter comments than I ever had. I was carrying on conversations and found myself connecting with other women out there in cyberspace that I surprisingly had a lot in common with.

The next day, when I checked my blog, I had 10 new followers. I slowly started spending a few extra minutes in the mornings on Twitter-responding to a few interesting tweets, re-tweeting things that caught my eye…basically just engaging other tweeps [Twitter people or ‘peeps’ if you aren’t familiar with the jargon] off and on throughout the day. Over the course of the next two weeks, I went from 235 Google Friend Connect Followers to 285. And I chalk that up to Twitter. A lot of people discover you through your Twitter Account and follow you. They may click on your blog if you post a link; they may even comment on occasion…but if you engage these readers, make them feel like you appreciate their company, their input and the time that they give you when they read your blog/mention you on Twitter, then you begin a readership. A loyal fan-base.

And it’s that Fan-base…that readership that slowly builds your community. And your community is what adds to you likelihood of turning your tiny little blog into a successful and established Professional Blog sought out by companies across the country. If it sounds like that idea is way out of your reach right now, don’t let yourself become discouraged. Think about your favorite blogger…and one point or another, they were right where you are…where I still am…they were growing. Finding their voice. Learning how to utilize what they have. So keep at it!
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Don’t forget to add your link below if you are joining me for No Mom Talk Monday! What are your thoughts on Social Media and your blogger? Any tips and tricks that you have found useful for establishing and growing a readership? I’d love to hear you input! Leave me a comment below!

Happy Monday, all!!

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