|*sniff* all her followers left her|
Losing followers isn't fun. It's like a little jolt, or like when a bug flies in your eye accidentally, or like when you slip on a banana peel and fall flat on your face. (Because I know that happens to you all the time...)
But hey! You shouldn't be (too) upset. And don't just take my word for it - here are five reasons why a follower may have clicked "unsubscribe," and why you shouldn't go into mourning because of it.
(Just FYI, Lee covered blog math and gaining followers in this post. I really appreciated his thoughts on that, so you should go give it a quick read-through either before or after you finish this post. Or during. I guess you can do it during if you want.)
Numero Uno: My blog is boring.
We're prone to telling ourselves this, and you know what? It might actually be the case. You may, in fact, own the Most Boring Blog in Existence (in which case, contact Guinness World Records right away). And you may have gotten unfollowed because one of your followers suddenly realized this. Which, of course, begs the question - if your blog is the Most Boring Blog in Existence, how on earth did you get followers in the first place?
But I think we can safely rule out that your blog is NOT the Most Boring Blog in Existence. So what then?
Okay, if you still suspect your blog may be boring then don't sit around moping. Shake things up a little! Add some new gadgets, or take some away. Start a blog series. Write a post in the meter of the Rime of the Ancient Mariner. If you're bored with your blog, your followers might be too.
Numero dos: I'm a terrible blogger/writer/person.
Another one of those things we tell ourselves. And yes, my dear, you're not a perfect person. Nobody is.
Now as for being a terrible blogger/writer - how so? Are you terrible, or just lazy? Or sloppy? Or self-centered? If you think you're a bad writer or blogger, do something about it. Buy a book on writing. Buy several books on writing. Read them. Think about them. Apply them.
If you suspect that a follower left because they're tired of you writing all your posts lyk this then maybee its tiem u rethot ur blogging stile.
Numero tres: The person who unfollowed me hates me/only followed me so I would follow back (which I didn't)/was offended by my opinions.
If a person truly hates you, do you seriously want that person following your blog?
If a person only followed you so that they could add you to their own follower count, do you seriously want that person following your blog?
Hmmm? Yeah, thought so.
Okay, next point. The person who unfollowed you may have been offended by your opinions. Let's ask some questions, then.
Do you stand by your opinions?
Did you state them in a way that was respectful? (this question may be arguable, but is a good one to consider anyway)
Do you value your opinions more than another person's approval?
If you answered yes to all three then you have nothing to worry about. It's your blog, and yours alone. If you truly stand by what you said, if you said it in a way that wasn't intentionally inflammatory, and if you truly value your opinions, then who cares if you lost a follower (or followers)?
Let me give you an example. I am a Christian, and I'm not afraid to talk about it on my blog. I don't get too deep into theological posts and questions, but I do talk about it occasionally. Has this lost me followers, or detracted potential followers from clicking the "follow" button? Yes, most likely. And that's not necessarily a good thing, but you know what? It doesn't matter to me. I stand by my convictions. If a person unfollows me because of that, so be it.
Numero quatro: The person who unfollowed me was genuinely uninterested in my blog.
Now we have a reasonable point. The un-follower (new terminology here!) may not be interested in your blog anymore, and THAT'S OKAY.
(Yes, that was important enough to put in all caps.)
I'm sure you've lost interest in a blog before. Maybe you even unfollowed it. Was it entirely the fault of the blogger? No, I'm sure it wasn't. Perhaps you followed them for content you thought you were getting, but they changed direction. Perhaps you followed them way back when you were crazy about one subject - but now the fervor has died down now and you've moved on. There are lots of reasons.
And if you can justify unfollowing a blog to yourself, then you shouldn't blame another blogger for unfollowing you as well.
Note: I understand that some people (I tend to lean this way a little myself) think it's rude to unfollow a blog just because you're uninterested; but different people have different standards for this. Be understanding.
Numero sinco: The un-follower has reached the maximum amount of blogs they can follow, and is cleaning up their blog list.
Did you know that there is a limit to the number of blogs you can follow? That number is 300.
After I found that out, I went and checked the number of blogs I was following. I'm at 100, currently, so I still have a ways to go.
So maybe your un-follower has just found a 301st blog that they absolutely love and absolutely must follow. But - oh dear! They've reached the limit. One blog must go... which one will it be?
And they go to yours, and click "unfollow."
Why did they single out yours? Maybe it was for one of the reasons above. But the point here is that it's basically necessity here that's causing them to unfollow you. Which may or may not make you feel better, but there you go.
We'd like to think that following is like a commitment, a promise made by a person to regularly read and follow your blog. But the truth is that unless a follower is actively involved with your content, they're just a number. That's it. And numbers are great, but what you really want is dedicated readers. People who enjoy your content, who read it consistently, and who comment.
So if a person unfollowed you for whatever reason, then they are not your dedicated follower. They're not the kind of follower you want. Not to sound insensitive, but good riddance!
Think of it as sorting out the sheep from the goats. Now we shall see who all my true followers are....
Word Art: Painting with Words.
I'm sure you have stories about losing followers. Let's hear them (it could be therapeutic)! Have you ever unfollowed a blog? What were your reasons? How close are you to the 300 blog limit (or do you use something other than GFC to keep up with blogs)? What are your opinions on unfollowing in general?