"Required reading" for today's smart writer.

"Required reading" for today's smart writer.
As featured on: Pro Blogger, Men With Pens, Write to Done, Tiny Buddha, LifeHack, Technorati, Date My Pet, South 85 Literary Journal and other award-winning sites.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Does Your Blog Suffer the "Blahs"?



It's a delicate subject.
One that even the best of friends don't discuss.
In fact, some avoid it like the plague.
Nobody likes to be the bearer of bad news---and well, maybe you're thinking it's not even your place, right?

Still, I'm willing to bet that somewhere in your round of travels across the Net, you've encountered a blog that suffers the "blahs".
Come on, be honest. :-)
Perhaps it's a newbie who lacks direction, or a friend who has a dynamic personality in person, but comes across as lackluster on line. Or it can be someone who constantly dotes on attention with his posts, (look at ME, ME, ME), but provides no real take-away value for visitors to take away.
Or perhaps, God forbid...it's you. :-)

Are you with me here?

Much like people, Blogs are supposed to have "personality" people! :-)
Regardless as to whether it's devoted to cooking, the craft of writing, or crocheting. It needs to have some "flava'". Hello?

Or look at it this way. Your Blog is your online signature that uniquely distinguishes you from the other millions of folks in the blogosphere.

The problem often times is a lack of objectivity. Let's face it, whether it's our car, our homes, or something we've written, there's typically a blind spot that prevents us from seeing it as others do.

Don't despair.
In the words of Dr. Phil, "the first step to correcting a problem is identifying it."

With this in mind, here's how to tell if your Blog is suffering the "blahs". Even if your best friend won't tell you. :-)

1. You've been blogging for 12 months or more, and the same 2 or 3 people are the only ones commenting on your work.

2. There's no growth. Your followers have not increased, nor has your span of influence.

3. You have a high "bounce rate". In other words, visitors come but they don't "connect". They click on to your site, but leave shortly after.

4. You fall asleep when posting your own posts.

5. You're unsure about your focus. Word! If you're clueless, chances are that your potential audiences will be as well.


Well, folks there you have it. Agree or disagree? Make some noise!
Here's a bonus. If the response is good, in my next post I'll address how to avoid the doldrums. Stay tuned...

Image: graur razvan ionut

14 comments:

  1. I'm glad you wrote this! Too often I find myself wondering the same thing? "Is my blog boring compared to so and so?" and "Wow! They have over a 1000 followers! How???" Up until a few weeks ago, I only had 3 followers since August. Three. While I appreciate them profusely for their input, I kept wondering why no one else wanted to join in the fun??? lol Well fast forward to today and I now have a whopping 10 followers! I must be doing something right or is it write? :) I have many reasons for starting my blog. Most importantly, it was as an outlet for my neurosis but even more than that, I'm a writer. I aspire to write great things one day, and so this is helping me better my craft. Your input and your suggestions are mean a lot and are greatly appreciated. Oh and your tips rock! Thanks! :)

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  2. Jennifer Brown BanksOctober 27, 2010 at 11:37 AM

    Yvonne,

    I've been to your site; you're definitely not guilty of the "blahs". :-)

    Thanks for "rockin'" with me.

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  3. I want to tell you I found your Jennifer's Gems articles on onlinedatingmagazine.com, and THANK YOU so much for your words. They have come at THE BEST time. So, of course, I'm following your blog now. :)

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  4. Jennifer Brown BanksOctober 27, 2010 at 4:28 PM

    WR,

    How cool! Welcome! I didn't think folks were still reading those archived columns. :-)
    I am honored to have you here , and so glad you found needed answers, or some form of peace in my words. I hope to hear from you more in times to come...

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  5. Oh dear now I am worried my own blog has the ‘blahs’! But no problem, I’ll be happy to rectify that situation. Looking forward to your post on the tips!

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  6. Jennifer Brown BanksOctober 28, 2010 at 6:23 AM

    gargimehra,

    That was funny. :-) But, I do say, even though I didn't have your site in mind when I posted this, you have the right attitude! The best way to become a better writer or blogger is to take any "perceived negatives" and turn them into positives! You're already a winner. :-)

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  7. I agree! I wonder, too, if we sometimes experience seasons of this. I imagine that it can reflect what else is going on in our lives.
    Hadn't thought about it much but our blogs really do reflect our writing voice and style, don't they?

    I think that one way to help with this problem is to make sure you are interactive on others' blogs - you know, the law of sowing and reaping. But here again, content has to be good in order for visitors to stay and comment. Either that or they can look forward to a nap while visiting your blog. :)

    Look forward to your solutions on how to avoid the doldrums.
    Take care,
    Karen

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  8. Jennifer Brown BanksOctober 28, 2010 at 9:54 AM

    Karen,

    I'm tickled at your response. My recent visit at your site leads me to believe that we should be taking lessons from you. :-) Your followers are growing in leaps and bounds. Good job, girl!

    Oh yeah, I do agree that sometimes what we have going on in our lives factors in as well.

    Thanks for your thoughts.

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  9. You have definitely stepped up the "personality" factor, Ms. Banks :) Waay to go!

    Clara.

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  10. Jennifer Brown BanksOctober 29, 2010 at 5:34 AM

    As my friend often states, "I'm a work in progress." This blogging thing ain't always as easy as it looks, but I'm learning. :-)

    Thanks for your thoughts, Clara.

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  11. I try to include a bit of "me" in each of my posts. We can get information in many places but I like sharing it in regards of how it pertains to me which allows the reader to take into account how it could pertain to them. If I am writing a post that feels stale I switch to something else for a while and revisit in with a fresh eye in the attempt to infuse it with some joy and passion. :)

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  12. Jennifer Brown BanksOctober 30, 2010 at 2:34 PM

    Hi Emma,

    Good info. Thanks for sharing how you "share" yourself with us blog readers. :-)

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  13. Jennifer,
    I just wanted to say that I really enjoy your blogs. This one more so because I feel it pertains to my current thoughts about where I am headed with my writing. I wouldn't technically call myself a writer but I feel I have some traits. As all of these other bloggers have stated that there are times when we feel the blah-ness and how we can overcome it. I always look forward to reading your new posts and prospering my own unique style of blogging.

    Thanks :)

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  14. Jennifer Brown BanksOctober 31, 2010 at 11:04 AM

    AWW, , how I really appreciate your kind sentiments and your input, Danika (27)!
    It is folks like you who keep me moving forward and motivated. :-) I think you'll be very successful in your writing aspirations, because you have the "write" attitude and a willingness to learn.

    It's been awesome hearing from you today.

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