Expanding Your Blog Audience
As with any pursuit in life, plateaus are often common and a fairly natural occurrence. Things that make the difference between hitting a plateau and overcoming that plateau are often the tactfulness of the approach and the wisdom to put one's cards in the proper place. In the world of blogging, the rules, in many cases, are no different.
Many bloggers are commonly plagued by the dreaded plateau in readership. Even if your blog is unique and interesting, it might eventually attain a readership level that remains at a certain level and becomes extremely difficult to improve upon.
This is where you as the blogger must venture outside of your comfort zone. In other words, simply writing your blog posts on a regimented schedule and about the same topics over and over will not typically improve your overall readership. Instead, you will need to diversify your approach and try different things that are specifically directed towards expanding your blog audience.
Form Relationships with Other Bloggers
A great starting point is networking. Look at other blogs in your niche, get to know the bloggers, comment often, and build relationships. Relationships, however distant, can be the savior of your stagnant reader base. Simply writing a blog and believing that people will come to read it is foolish. Plus, when you network with other bloggers in your given niche, everybody wins. Though not quite a hive-mind, the bloggers in your niche create more of a communicative mosaic. Be as connected as possible.
Another blogging aspect to consider is format. The format of your blog is very influential to whether a reader will continue to come back, as well as whether they will share your blog with others. If the format is stoic and uninviting, the chances are low that readers will return.
However, if you create a format that encourages reader interaction and input, the chances of continued readership are greater. Allow the readers to influence the content with their thoughts and expertise. In a way, you can utilize the individual knowledge of your readers to expand the collective knowledge of your blog. Many minds are better than one.
Reach outside of your immediate area of interest. One of the most effective methods of reaching new sects of people with your blog is to expand your entry topics. If you remain hinged to the central themes of your blog but expand to explore any and all peripheral topics (i.e. if you blog about gardening, expand into the nutritional aspects of growing one's own food, or of the environmental benefits therein), you can be certain to reach new areas of readership.
Reaching a plateau with a certain blogging topic is inevitable. Consistently exploring new topics and areas can override this inevitability. Finding and exploring the interrelations is the key.
Like them or hate them, social media networks are here to stay. They are the new frontier in communication, and it's best to get involved as a blogger. The math is simple here: more exposure equals more potential readership.
Another important lesson is one you learned as a youngster - share. Rather, make it possible for your readers to share your blog with others. Beyond this, make it something they want to do. Create a contest or post the name of the person who shares the most. Social media sites can also provide a great platform for sharing articles from your blog. Get creative.
Above all, the bottom line is to have an interesting and useful blog. If your blog is useful to its readership (and in fact you will only have a readership if it is useful), they will be more likely to spread the word. Word of mouth is the oldest and most effective method of advertisement. If you are dynamic in your approach, your results are much more likely to be proliferous.
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