Blog traffic and growth • Blogging Insights#15
In this 15th round of Blogging Insights Dr Tanya – in her great blog Salted Caramel – asks the following questions: 1. How often, if at all, do you check your blog statistics? 2. What methods do you use to increase reader engagement, (provided you care about this)? 3. Do you actively promote your blog on social media?
Q: How often, if at all, do you check your blog statistics?
A couple of times every day I’ve posted something. I’m a sucker for performance numbers. Being still much of a rookie-blogger I still fret over the performance of anything I’ve posted. I even have notifications of the WordPress-app on my phone turned on (though I have switched off the sound). But, there is a but…my blog statistics do not drive my traffic and growth.
Q: What methods do you use to increase reader engagement, (provided you care about this)?
Paradoxically – or stupidly (depends on how you look at this I guess) – I haven’t made many changes. Even when the numbers are dismal. I just do whatever I feel like doing. I have learned the hard way for instance that posts with less text and an emphasis on photos score better. But being a bit stubborn I don’t really care enough to spastic-ally change behavior. A couple of days ago for instance I posted something about my cat and how I found her in a shelter. Normally I score well over 70% likes/views on this particular challenge. But this particular post so far ‘scores’ below 50%. And to my own surprise I don’t really care. I like what I’ve written. And so do (a few) others apparently.
On the other hand though I do get a feeling of accomplishment when I see the # of likes go up, which they do fortunately. But if they don’t, I do not lose any sleep over it.
To digress for just one minute and share a (for me) crucial lesson I’ve learned many lifetimes ago when I was young and eager. I was trying to land myself a job with one of the up & coming advertising hot shops in Amsterdam. I was being interviewed by one of the founders and a creative partner, trying to wriggle myself into a job that was way too big for me at the time. His one and only question after we were past exchanging pleasantries was ‘Are you vain? Vain enough to have what it takes?’ While I had prepared myself solidly, I never expected that…He didn’t mean vanity in the appearance sense he explained, but was I vain enough to believe deep down inside I could be one of the greats and win awards that mattered? Because he believed that all great advertising people were inherently vain, vain enough to develop ideas and execute them in a most memorable way. Vain enough to stand up for what they believed in, in front of clients who did not see at first what they saw. And vain enough to keep believing in an idea even when everybody rejected it (at first). Because he could only build an agency that would and stay famous with people that possessed this kind of vanity. To only care so much about what others think and stand up and fight for his/her conviction. Damn the torpedoes so to speak.
Coming back to the point then. The same is true for architects, artists etc. Basically any form of creative expression. The same is true for bloggers I think.
Q: Do you actively promote your blog on social media?
No.Basically I am not so enamored with social media any longer. I dutifully fill in the boxes of my Yoast SEO plug-in, but that’s about the level of my engagement.
Personally I spend less and less time or post hardly anything on social media like LinkedIn or Facebook. I absolutely hate Twitter, to the extent that I never go there voluntarily. And while I may have a few other accounts here and there they’re inactive.
So, to round off this Blogging Insights#15 about Blog traffic and growth, if you’d like to read what I intended when I started this whole thing, click here.