Monday, April 18, 2011

Help please!

Happy Monday everyone!

As some of you may be aware, I am speaking and teaching at a local writer's conference in a couple of weeks. I'm excited but nervous about this opportunity. Mostly because I want to do a really good job. I want to be interesting, and funny, and entertaining, but also informative and helpful and yeah, the list goes on. That's not too much to expect from myself, right? Heh, heh. Um...

This is where you come in. I have quite a range of topics to teach during the day, and I already have a good idea of how I'm going to approach them. However, I think it would be interesting and informative to hear what some of your thoughts are. I'm going to be asking for your help or feedback on a few things to help me put together the absolute best presentations possible. My hope is that by taking what I've already thought up, and adding to it with your insights, I will be able to accomplish my previously mentioned goals. Cause let's face it, chances are ya'll are way smarter than me anyway. ;)

So first up: blogging. I am supposed to teach two different classes on blogging, one on how to gain more followers and one on making your blog a success. There are many of you who have waaaay more followers than me, and are definitely much more successful bloggers than I am, so for today here are my questions: (you can pick one of the three, or answer all three if you want)

What is the #1 best piece of advice you could give someone on how to make their blog a success/or to gain more followers?

What is something about my blog that you think makes it "successful" or made you want to become a follower?

What is something a blogger SHOULDN'T do if they want to accomplish either goal?

Thank you for your help! Hopefully I can do a good job on the 30th. *bites nails* *except not really, because I'm not actually a nail biter, but you know, figuratively speaking*

The funny thing about being asked to teach this class is that I don't think of my blog as a "success." Not in the way that I'd imagine a class would expect their teacher's blog to be. I don't have 1,000+ followers, or 50 comments on each post. But then I thought about it, and I realized that for me it is a success. When I get comments telling me how much a certain post meant to someone, or I meet a new friend through my blog, or someone tells me they are going to bookmark my post because it was so helpful to them... that is a great success in my book. And a year ago, I wouldn't have dreamed of having 300 hundred people following my blog, let alone 1,000. So, no. I don't have as "big" of a blog as quite a few, but I guess for me, it IS a little bit of a success after all. :)


Anita said...

I don't think people should put their political views on their blogs...not if they're looking for an agent or editor. I also think people are crazy for putting travel info on their never know when a wacko will be reading. Paranoid much? :) I like blogs that have a voice...readers want to know what the blog author is like and want to buy the author's books because we enjoy their voice.

Ruth said...

No advice here. I'm trying to figure it all out myself. But I started following you because I heard you speak at the conference last year! You were interesting, funny and helpful so I'm sure you'll be just as great:)

Melody Valadez said...

What makes me want to be a follower? Good grammar and spelling (seriously), a sense of humor, and not too many book reviews (unless it's a review blog).

What not to do? Don't have messy backgrounds/design (white text on black), don't stray too far from your blog topic.

That's just what I could think of off the top of my head. :) Good luck with your talks!

Carolina Valdez Miller said...

Number one advice for blogging...hmm. Well, I'd say, first off, have good content. Content people want to read. Second, have a pleasing blog to look at. Really dark backgrounds with light writing make my eyes all boggly and I'm less likely to stick around just because it kind of hurts.

There's more. I know there's more, but my brain is foggy with illness at the moment.

You're gonna rock the conference, luv!!

Jen Daiker said...

I don't know if I'm a pro or not but I'll still answer as best as I can!!! Either way I know you're going to rock at the conference I'm just sad I can't be there to witness it!

1. Care & Comment: If you want to gain a following the key is to show interest in others work. Work is involved in anything but it can be fun if you're taking the time to meet new people, introduce yourself, and returning. You don't just gain friends by saying hello once. Your followers are your friends, teach them as such.

2. Navigating made easy - It's easy to open, easy to find out things about you, and to know your likes and dislikes. I personally have more tabs and gadgets but that fits my personality and what I want to convey. I love the feel and the energy you convey. That's what sells it for me.

3. Nothing negative: To be a success you need to remain professional. You can still be your quirky self but the negative comments and views aren't going to keep those you want around. Image is important online & off. Know how you want to be portrayed and use that as your guide.

I hope that helps!

Jen Daiker said...

One more thing for #1 is to agree with the others... content is everything. The shorter and more humorous OR informative your posts are the better they'll be received.

D U Okonkwo said...

For blogging techniques, I'd suggest to write consistently, as Google can only rank blogs that are updated on a regular basis. Also, to choose a specific niche and stick to it, so that the blog is specialised and has focus.

Good luck!

The Las Vegas Writer said...

Good luck with your presentation :)

Kasie West said...

You have more followers than I do, so you probably know more than I do :) but I'll bore you anyway. I think taking interest in others' blogs any other people in general gains followers. Of course content and consistency in posting are important but visiting blogs and getting out there is important too.

Kasie West said...

oops, typo. That "any" in the post above is supposed to be "and". Sigh. I hate typos.