"Required reading" for today's smart writer.

"Required reading" for today's smart writer.
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Thursday, October 13, 2011

How to Use Search Terms for Blogging Success, by Yasmin Morais


My poetry blog has just passed the one-year mark, and I am pleased with the response from readers so far. Though they have been a bit shy on commenting, Blogger’s tracking feature does a comprehensive analysis of their geographic location as well as the keywords which led them to my blog. And the librarian in me has been paying close attention to those search terms. In fact, I am particularly excited about monitoring the search terms, because not only do they help me to respond to the readers’ information needs, search terms also provide me with numerous ideas for interesting blog posts that I would not have thought of.

One such post, which has turned out to be my most viewed, and commented on, was written after I noted that several visitors to my blog were searching for a list of Caribbean poets. I decided to create a draft list which readers would help me build, and I threw out the challenge for visitors to give feedback on poets not included on the list, or any errors noted. The response was very positive, and I received comments on the works of poets I had not been aware of, allowing me to refine the list in the process.

So, if you have not been doing so, and you have this feature, take a closer look at the search terms of your visitors. Are there specific, recurring themes that they are looking for? For example, I noted that Dutch Caribbean poetry has been popping up lately, so I have made a mental note to focus soon on that topic. Are the search terms in sync with your blog’s focus? If they are, then you have the perfect opportunity to use them to generate future posts.

And while you are at it, aim to make it as interactive and fun-filled as you can. It is an interesting way to involve your readers and allow for symbiosis. After all, there is always so much that we can learn from our readers.


Bio: Yasmin Morais is a librarian and poet. She blogs at Poets of the Caribbean (http://www.poetsofthecaribbean.blogspot.com), and is the author of From Cane Field to the Sea, and Mommy and Daddy are Soldiers.

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7 comments:

  1. Thanks Yasmin, for this info. I have kept an eye on my blog's search feature but hadn't thought of using it in this way. Will look at it differently now! Thanks, Jennifer, for hosting Yasmin. :)

    Happy weekend!

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  2. Thanks for the feedback, Karen. It just hit me one day when I looked at the search terms, that those were the bits of information that readers were searching for when they stumbled on my blog posts. Thanks, also Jennifer, for allowing me the opportunity to guest post on my favorite blog :)

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  3. Jennifer Brown BanksOctober 14, 2011 at 10:15 AM

    Karen,

    Thanks. It was indeed useful info for me too. :-)

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  4. Jennifer Brown BanksOctober 14, 2011 at 10:17 AM

    Yasmin,

    The pleasure was definitely ours. Good stuff, here. :-) I appreciate your loyal support and kind words.

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  5. Wow, thank you, Yasmin! I knew Blogger offered this feature for my blog, but I never paid much attention to it. I will now not only check it, but make the most of tailoring future posts to reader search terms.

    Thank you for the tip!

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  6. Janette, you are welcome. Thanks for the feedback, and I wish you much success with your blog. I noted that we both like the book, Love in the Time of Cholera :)

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  7. Thanks Yasmin,

    That's a great idea, I do have some 'Statistical Stuff' that I can look into, I also frequently get mails with reports from the Search Box on my Main Blog, that I hardly ever really look at.

    I also just enjoy looking at all those cool Graphs that I can generate from those Stats, It makes me feel that I finally begin to make a little progress and for example also on my - Writer's Lifestyle - Blog I recently saw
    a straigt upgoing line!

    Hopefully I can find out more about what my readers are searching for on my blog, because the actual readers participation on that blog is still a little less than on several of my other blogs.

    'Talking about
    Readers Participation....,'

    Whenever you feel like Commenting, I have a whole 'Blog Commenting Theme Park Attraction' open for you, and any time you are welcome to - just pack a lunch - and step into the world of Blog Commenting if you like :)

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