"Required reading" for today's smart writer.

"Required reading" for today's smart writer.
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Saturday, November 8, 2014

How Often Should You Blog? Some Food for Thought...




JEN'S BLACK BEAN AND CORN SALAD

In an effort to "feed" hungry minds, entertain readers, and increase search engine rankings, some bloggers feel obligated to post something to their sites more often than they probably should.

Some even everyday. And though blog frequency is a personal decision, often based upon a blogger's goals, time, type of blog,  readership, and need to "connect" there are perhaps some general practices and principles to be observed, if you'd like to get the most out of your blogging efforts, and be able to go the distance.

Though I don't presume to know what's best for everybody, the information I will share today is based upon my many years as an expert Blogologist and award-winning blogger. And yes, I made that "Blogologist" title up. :-)

What inspired this post was a question I received from one of my readers who felt guilty because she had lost her blogging "mojO."
"Distressed" wanted to know what she should do. She just didn't feel much like updating her site after many years of faithful posting...and so she felt as if she was letting her readers down.
Not so. Not necessarily.

Here are a few things you should consider:
  • The purpose of your blog--some sites would categorically require more "coverage" than others. For instance, if your site is based upon news or current events, it would probably need several updates a week. Or, if your blog is instructional in nature, frequent updates would likely be in order.
  • Consider the needs of your audience--I'm a firm believer that quality should trump quantity. I would much rather "hear" from a blogger who posts just once a week with something valuable to share, than someone who pens a post daily with mundane things like what he ate for breakfast, problems with his pet rock collection, bouts with diarrhea, etc. as a matter of fact, I have actually "unsubscribed" to a few of these blogs. 
  • Remember that there is great truth to the expression, "Silence is golden." If you really don't have anything that you feel is worth sharing...by all means, don't. We'll understand.
  • Whatever your designated frequency, always keep the lines of communication open. One of my biggest pet peeves is when bloggers take breaks for extended periods, and fail to announce it before taking off. Hello! Anybody home?
  • Keep in mind, (as I stated in a previous post), that a blog post doesn't have to be of epic proportion for it to resonate with readers. It can be a video, motivational quotes, links to other interesting blogs, a book review, or even a contest. Get the idea?
  • Consider the ebb and flow of readership. I don't know about you, but I find that no matter how awesome your posts may be, during the summer months and during the Xmas holidays, folks are just not checking in and commenting as much. Wouldn't you agree?
  • Call in some reinforcement. Accepting guest bloggers is a great way to get a little break, while offering your readers content variety and exposure to different voices and views.
  • Adopt Oprah's philosophy. When things feel "forced" they rarely feel good; we should heed that inner voice and have the courage to choose what's best for us.
  • When in doubt, ask. Polls, surveys, and questions posed to your readers are all great ways to determine their needs and decide the future direction of your blog. Assess and then address. Also pay attention to the level and nature of comments received.

Thoughts?
How often do you blog? Do tell.





13 comments:

  1. I agree with your views on providing valuable contribution on one's blog.
    The pace is personal but if you walk slow and steady yor journey might take you farther. After all it's one's self that must be surpassed to amount to progress.
    Not interested in the attraction of readership by pleasing the masses, it's best to model a great original piece than a best seller where you appeal to the programs of a crowd that expresses their joy in heehaws and yahoo yelling to cover their emptiness of real thought. The basic idea is to truly evolve. Even if you're completely alone.

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    1. Hi Carlos,

      Great to have your feedback; long time no hear from. :-) I love how you stated this. Thanks so much for stopping by and starting us off today.

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  2. Hello Jennifer.

    I enjoy all of your posts. Thanks! Well, I've been blogging for five years now, seven days a week. Sometimes I do just short posts and always with photos. Because I love writing and photography so much, this has been a labor of sheer love.

    However, after five years and more than 1,850 posts, I'm re-thinking blogging on a daily basis. I want to expand my freelance writing possibilities so must carve out some time.

    I love my followers so very much and enjoy corresponding with people in many countries as well as throughout the USA. I know they will understand if I cut back a bit from daily blogging. Sincerely, Susan

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    1. Susan,

      You're my favorite kind of reader: one who provides comments and compliments. :-) As I said before, I applaud your commitment to blogging and your consistency. I think your photography and content shows that your site is indeed a "labor of love." Thanks for sharing.

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  3. Jennifer, really good points. As a blogger for the past 3 years, I've asked myself this question recently and listened to the wise voice within...she said, it's ok to take your time to write, to offer posts when they are fully formed and not before.
    I have come to the realisation that it is my own pressure that causes me to worry about how often to publish a post...my readers are not out there sitting at their computers saying, come on Maribel, I'm waiting for your next post. It's a bit like asking a person, how often should I go to the store to buy milk? The answer is the same - when you need to!
    So I have begun to write articles and NOT publish them straight away but to store them up to take that pressure off to perform, they will appear in good time...and I also feel I am not overwhelming my readers by posting too often. Blogs that post daily I am afraid, I do not have the time to read.
    So...there is my mini-post in your comment box! Best...Maribel

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    1. Maribel,

      Your "mini-post" packs a maximum punch! Thanks so much for adding to the mix. It's always a pleasure to connect with you. :-)

      Delete
  4. Good way to lose followers is to disappear without notice. I think it is a courtesy to notify readers if you will be away for a while
    .
    My blog is eclectic, but I try to throw in a dash of humor.

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    1. Linda,

      No one could ever accuse you or your writing of being boring. :-) Always enjoy hearing your perspective. Much thanks, dearest.

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  5. Like Linda, my blog is eclectic. I blog three times a week and have about five general categories. Everyone seems to enjoy the 'mishaps' category. =0) Sometimes I re-issue an old post for the sake of new readers. I can only afford so much time to read other blogs and limit myself to four or five - one of which is Pen & Prosper. Always find some treasure here that makes my own writing journey better!

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    1. Sue,
      ...And you have indeed made the "journey" sweeter. I value you and your support. :-)

      Delete
  6. I agree, Jen. These guidelines will help us put our best "blogging foot " forward. I used to post twice a week, but with schedule changes, chose to go down to once a week. My readers don't seem to mind, and I'm enjoying a consistent number of visits and comments.

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  7. Thanks so much for your thoughts, Karen. :-)

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  8. In a file folder I collected lot's of ideas and outlines for writing blog posts, and I would like to get some more readers feedback to get a better idea about what topics to put at the top of my 'Topics to Writer About'-list.

    I set my own pace, I usually keep actual blog post publishing rather Exclusive so I am happy to say that today you can actually discover a - crispy fresh - new blog post published! :)

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