Monday, January 26, 2015

Bringing New Readers to Our Blogs

I wonder if we're missing the obvious in our collective efforts to bring new readers and Followers to our blogs?  We write comments on each other's blogs and participate in each other's blog parties but sometimes it feels as if we're just "preaching to the choir"?

This thought hit me yesterday when I stopped in to visit my friend, Mary Elizabeth. (I've written about her one-woman whole house re-do - bedroom, craft room, martini bar and more - in previous posts. Now she's working on the kitchen!)

As we sat talking at the kitchen table, Mary Elizabeth showed me a vintage copper mold that she wants to distress and incorporate into her kitchen in some unique way. 

Given that Mary Elizabeth is a talented, tech-savvy woman who is not afraid of power tools, I said to her, "Why don't you check out a few of the great "junker blogs" out there? Or scroll through a few blog parties for ideas?".

Mary Elizabeth follows my blog religiously so her reply surprised me. She said, "What do you mean by "junker blogs"?  And, "What are blog parties?".
At which point I practically flew out of my chair to grab her laptop and show her what she's missing.  Like most of us, I've always had a list of my favorite blogs and linky parties on my sidebar . . .

My sidebar at 22 Applegate Lane

I just never realized that Mary Elizabeth, and possibly many other "newbie" readers, had no idea that these were live links and how much inspiration could be found there with one or two clicks.

Since it was Sunday and Mary Elizabeth is into repurposing items for her kitchen re-do, I started by suggesting she click on Donna's Saturday night linky party at Funky Junk Interiors. I had to show her where to click to "Read" the rest of the post and actually find the party.

Do we all just assume that new blog readers know this stuff?
I did . . . until today.
Saturday's "Party Junk" at Funky Junk Interiors

As we scrolled down, I could see Mary Elizabeth's eyes light up. She seemed totally amazed to find so many great ideas on just one page.  She loved this recycled 3-tier server from Joan at Scavenger Chic . . .

And this funky "Love Letters" project from Petticoat Junktion.
Mary Elizabeth commented that she'll probably be up all night visiting blogs now that she knows what's out there in "blogland" and how to access it.

Show & Tell Friday Party at My Romantic Home

Ironically, as I was working on this post today I received this note from an old friend in Connecticut:

Wow! A second friend who follows my blog (sort of!) but doesn't know how to access others. I was really surprised!

None of us has time to routinely provide individual instruction to potential blog readers. We can do that occasionally, like I did with  my friend, but on a wider level? Not likely.

What about the Internet?  I googled "How to Read/Follow a Blog" to see.  The results included either highly technical advice or instructions on how to start writing a blog. Not very helpful for new blog readers like Mary Elizabeth and my friend from Connecticut.

I suppose we could each write occasional posts with tips like "How to Follow a Blog" or "How to Access Blog Parties" or "How to Comment on a Blog". That might help.

Is there more that we, as bloggers, can do to help other creative women, potential blog readers and Followers, feel more comfortable navigating through our little corner of cyberspace?

Or does it even matter?

This post is linked to:
Tweak It Tuesday at Cozy Little House
Tutorial Tuesdays at Hope Studios
Metamorphosis Monday at Between Naps On the Porch
Show & Share at Coastal Charm
What's It Wednesday at Ivy & Elephants
Vintage Inspiration Party at Beyond the Picket Fence


  1. Good suggestions. I love write 'how to' type posts. I bet Brenda of Cozy Little House will write some too.

  2. Maybe a sidebar how to? That way it would be there at all times for anyone needing it. €;^>

    1. I really like this idea, Barbara, and may start working on something. There are just so many little tips for navigating through Blogland...maybe we could each post just one or two on our sidebars for "Newbies".

  3. What a great post Cheryl. I know when I first started visiting blogs before I had my own I was very timid about what to click on and who to look at. I gradually got braver and found my way around to the point that I decided to start my own blog. It can be very intimidating for a person who is new to this.

  4. Great post. Some new readers may be of that generation that did not grow up with computers and each new activity on the computer is a challenge. My parents are struggling to learn email and facebook and i am sure that my blog is the only one that they have ever looked at. I am sure that when they are ready they will be amazed at what is out there.

  5. As a relative newbie at reading blogs, I admit to not knowing how to navigate around blog land. I'm a non-tech savy baby boomer. I have figured out how to add some blogs via email, but I do not like facebook, so won't go there. I do like Pinterest, but have no idea how to get to or do instagram(?). So any help from you lovely blog ladies would be helpful to someone like me and gratefully accepted.

  6. Interesting... I think you're on to something. Before I had a blog myself (9 months now), I knew nothing about link parties! Thanks for sharing these ideas... you got me thinking. ; ) ~julie

  7. Comment from Mary Elizabeth via e-mail (I'll have to teach her how to post Comments next!):
    Mary Elizabeth

  8. Hi Cheryl! This post is very thought provoking! Thanks for sharing those great photos with us too... are those things that she is thinking about repurposing?

  9. you are so right! Those of us who blog take so much for granted. Although it's been a long, long time, the first blog I visited stumped me. I wanted to leave a comment, but when I tried, I got a message about signing up, and I was afraid to do that! Long ago, when it was that memory was still fresh in my mind, I wrote a "how to" post about commenting. Since that time, I've felt like everyone out there probably knows more than I do about all of this stuff.

  10. Really interesting perspective. I guess we should al do it from time to time!


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