Wednesday, 12 October 2011

Blog Ranking (part 6) - Blog promotion


I've been receiving different email lately, proposing me to review softwares and web sites in exchange of something more or less valuable. While you may know that The Web Thought is not a commercial blog, what happened is a good starting point just to make a few consideration on blog ranking, or - generally speaking - about what to do to make a blog grow.

This is a post about blog promotion... be aware.

The proposals
The aforementioned emails I received (and believe me they are quite a lot) are in general offering something for free. That is a quite a common marketing technique: the sender is giving you something for free and in exchange you can do the sender a little favour. It's some sort of barter, and it can be even profitable. At first, I kindly answered all the emails, rejecting any proposal. Now I don't even bother.
I only accepted one offer, and I do regret (if you find in which post, I might even offer you a beer! Then I will explain what have happened in details).

What amazed me at the beginning, was the interest in my blog and generally in my posts. It was quite pleasing to see that my blog was becoming known around. I was wrong. And I think that inexperience was the reason why.

Today I answer just to emails that seem to be resonable. And I do it just because I consider myself a polite individual. I still write for my own pleasure, and not for money.

Strange comments
That leads me to another situation: comments waiting moderation.
I rarely have the pleasure to receive a comment to my posts. I do appreciate it, when the comment is just a "thank you" and when it points out something I missed (it actually happened just once, as of today).

I do receive many "strange comments". They usually are praises to my work, however they hide backlinks to commercial sites. Even in this case, I published one of them. And - again - I regret.

Today, I recognize them immediately as spam, and archive them instantly.

So what's the point?
Just a few months ago, a nice lady told me that I could not possibly reach more than 50 or 70 visitors a day, if I didn't promote my blog on social networks like Facebook or Twitter. She even wrote about that in her blog. I remember I politely answered to her idea, saying that I didn't want to promote my blog on Social Networks. I still think that. And I still don't have a Facebook or Twitter account, and I'm not planning to open them.

I'm probably wrong and I will regret. However I am convinced that I can make The Web Thought grow without any Social Network account. And I strongly believe in that.

When I look at The Web Thought statistics in Google Analytics, I see a web site that is steadily growing every month. Visitors are even starting to come back here, giving me the idea that they liked what they found the first time. So, I'm quite happy about how things are going, and I'm more and more convinced that my decisions were good (for the future, only time will tell).

So - again - what is it that I'm trying to say? What did I do?

The things that I believe are important in blog promotion:
  1. content: it is the most important thing in any kind of blog. People will value your content in the end. They will understand its quality or at least the passion you put into writing.
  2. RSS: use feeds to submit changes on your blog to search engines. Sitemaps are very important, and places like Google Sitemaps or Feedburner are a must.
  3. comments: sometimes post a comment on some other blog. Don't do it without a reason. Do it when you have something to say and/or add to the related post. In those case you might even place a link to one of your articles.
For a relatively young blog as The Web Thought, I believe the above ideas are enough.
There are actually other things we might consider, but in my short experience they are not worth it.

I really appreciate it, if you will share your thoughts on this topic. If you want you can use the comment section below.

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