Do Not Try This at Home: The Worst Blogging “Strategy” Ever

A few days ago I received an e-mail from a fellow blogger asking me to take a look at their site. Nothing out of the ordinary so far. Ever since starting The Art of Blogging last year, I receive a couple requests like that via e-mail and/or comments on a daily basis.

Usually, I do not have the time or the energy to offer free feedback. Most of my time is spent writing the content I share on this blog and working with those who want to be my clients.

But, well, I clicked on the link I was provided, to discover that the blog in question was very new.

Seven or so blog posts, every single one of them the definition of overshare. Lots of personal information about someone I didn’t personally know. I managed to go through three of those posts, and then left the blog without subscribing, feeling like a stranger had knocked on my door, walked into my living room, sat down on my couch, and politely asked me to give them a kiss.

I strongly believe that it is almost impossible to build a readership without having to engage with other bloggers, however you need to be aware of the proper way to do this.

Begging strangers for attention would never work in real life, right? Well… don’t you think commenting on other people’s blogs that they should visit your own site is not only disrespectful, but also shows a lack of social intelligence?

In real life, in this online world, we need to build rapport with another human being, develop an emotional connection, and spend some time getting to know one another.

If I do not know who you are, if you never commented on any of my blog posts before, and you ask me to visit your blog and offer you feedback, which means that I’ll have to spend way more time on your blog than you did on mine, what do you think is going to happen?

As a rule of mine, I never even approve comments that include links to other blogs. Just because I can, and because I feel cheated, as if the purpose of that comment is to make me (and some of my readers) click on that link.

I am well aware of the fact that that’s what we do. We are social in the hopes of getting something out of it.

What do you think would happen if a man walked up to a woman and told her they should have sex right away?

What I’ve always loved about blogging is the ability to connect on a deeper level with other people and to form relationships with them. However this takes time and perhaps bloggers need to keep in mind some of the principles of “courting” in case they do not want everyone to think of them as jerks.

The fact that this is not real life doesn’t mean that the same rules don’t apply anymore. Sadly, if you haven’t put in the effort to become socially calibrated, you’ll find it extremely difficult to interact with others in a proper manner.

Other bloggers and your readers need time to get to know you, build trust, figure out that you’re an actual human being, and arrive at the conclusion that you’re interested in them more than you are in watching your numbers go up.

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113 thoughts on “Do Not Try This at Home: The Worst Blogging “Strategy” Ever

  1. No one likes unwelcome solicitors. Liking, commenting, and/or following my blog is enough to attract my curiosity then visit other people’s blogs and follow back (depending on the content of the blog).

    I struggle at times when it comes to my blog; currently, it is nowhere near complete and needed improvement. I constantly remind myself that I shouldn’t convert my blog into what may appear to be a personal diary and only focus on one primary niche; hence, there are times I would write, upload, and then delete a blog post soon after.

    Time, effort, learning through trials and errors is key to self-improvement. And as Ernest Hemingway once said, “We are all apprentices in a craft where no one ever becomes a master.”

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Good write-up. Love it and harsh truth to it. People think blogs are meant to be ’a visit to the psychiatrist’ meanwhile it’s meant to be experiences or opinion-based playform. I enjoyed that especially the stranger walking into your lounge and want a kiss

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I think a lot of people are just so myopically excided about growing their blog, they forget that they should think relationships first. I see the same thing when people join a direct sales company……suddenly they are all about getting you to smell their candle, try their cheeseball or hold your party.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. This is my pet peeve in the music world. “Listen to my stuff!” Instagram is the worst for it. I’ll post an instrumental song and some beat maker says, “Hey, that”s sic, come check out my channel!” or…. even better. “Great picture!” – when clearly, the post is a short video.

    It got to the point where I gave up on instagram and now focus on wordpress.

    I too like being able to connect with other bloggers. I think we all can learn from each other. In a respectful manner.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Lol I thought I was the only one who thought leaving links was disrespectful. I usually pass it off as the blogger being new but I guess I shouldn’t endorse that.

    I’m not exactly an expert at blogging but I find being authentic as being so good in building a readership. Lovely post!

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Agree with you totally. The person who begged me to follow them was unknown to me, had never commented on my site or made any type of effort to build that “psychological rapport” you are suggesting. I did not believe I was rude in not replying to them because making a comment would have not only endorsed this individual in fellow reader’s eyes but also in a way “pimped” the site to those readers who have built a rapport with me and know I would not endorse a site I found suspect.

    You made a sexual reference. I wonder if the person who contacted me was trying to etch a notch on his cyber belt . I visited the site, read a few of the pots, noted the blog owner had not posted that many articles but depended on his followers to do the work there. To do so would turn me into a verbal prostitute pimping out this site.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. As a Palaeolitic-era creature, how deeply I empathize with your words: “The fact that this is not real life doesn’t mean that the same rules don’t apply anymore. ” Thanks for the valuable pithy tips.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. A couple of my early blog mentors said the way to get traffic (besides posting some semblance of quality) is to leave comments on other’s blogs. Contribute to the discussion – blogwhoring doesn’t count. It takes a while, but it works. Eventually you’ll get a following.
    None of this applies if every post is about what your cat did today and what you had for breakfast (unless kitty died and you ate her).

    Liked by 1 person

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