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Since I had already been offering my critiques of his stories and suggestions about blogging, Daron recently contacted me for some advice about how to freshen his blog and attract more readers. Here is what he wrote:
I would like your opinion on something. I have had an "Inspired by ... Country Music" feature on my site for quite some time. However, I believe that my site is getting rather monotonous. Do you think I should add in occasional accents to my site such as top 10 music of different genres/styles/themes? Maybe an occasional focus on other aspects of pop culture?
Check out my site at http://newkidintown1995.blogspot.com.
Tell me if you have any ideas to enhance my site.
What I latched onto shortly after I started blogging was regular features. I don't adhere to this as closely now, but for quite a while I would have a special theme for each day I blogged and I'd make sure I was consistent in my posting of these.
This method is what made me start 3 extra blogs concerning niche themes. So now I deal with blogs concerning dreams, memoir, and Bible study, publishing one day per week and always on the same day for each respective blog. In other words, my Bible blog posts every Sunday, the memoir blog every Saturday, and the dream blog every Thursday. Readers of those blogs have expectations of when posts will appear and I make every attempt to meet those expectations.
On my main blog, Tossing It Out, I consistently post on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. Lately I've been delving into the theme of controversial debate topics and that has been getting a decent response with many long well-thought comments. I think I've got some readers interested in this debate concept.
You might want to consider a 2 or 3 day schedule where you continue to do what you've been doing on one of those days but maybe expand the story themes to some extent. You can stick with your current stories based on country music concept since that's kind of like a trademark and it's a good concept that you can take a long way. Then on other days you could explore non fiction themes about writing, pop culture, life, or whatever. The mix of fiction and non-fiction will create a nice balance and display your versatility as a writer.
Your posts don't need to be long or complex and most importantly you should involve the reader. Make the posts as much or more about them than you or what you're doing. Engage in conversation. ASK QUESTIONS--this is the most important thing I've done to get better reader response. When I began including questions at the end of my posts, my comments increased significantly You want them to listen to you, but remember a lot of them would like to say something too. It's up to you to facilitate those conversations.
Variety is good. As I've mentioned before, you might want to consider the rigor of the A to Z Challenge. It's a good way to test the waters to see what readers respond to best and to develop a networking system for yourself in order to make social rounds a bit more organized. Check out some of the posts at the Blogging from A to Z Challenge Blog to get some ideas.
Hope that helps. Happy to assist in any way I can.
Please stop by Daron's blog and provide him your words of encouragement and support. Hopefully you will discover a new blog to follow.
Do you blog according to a schedule? Do you use recurring regular themes on your blog? What are some suggestions you might offer to make a blog more interesting to capture a larger audience?