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1 Easy Solution to 3 Big Blogging Problems

Posted By Guest Blogger 13th of September 2010 Miscellaneous Blog Tips 0 Comments

Guest post by AnnabelCandyfrom Get In the Hot Spot

Over the last 13 months 63,548 people from 165 countries have visited my blog and left 1,637 comments thanks to my friend Teresa. In fact it’s really all thanks to Teresa that I’ve enjoyed so many amazing opportunities since I started blogging. These are a few of the highlights of my short blogging career:

  • meeting like-minded people from around the globe;
  • being flown to China for a social media conference;
  • earning money online;
  • getting new clients for my copy writing and web design services;
  • meeting best selling authors;
  • writing for print and some of the most popular blogs on the Internet like Problogger.

You’re probably wondering who Teresa is and where you can find this great blogging guru. You may be imagining the female version of Problogger ~ an experienced bloggers who’s been coaching me and feeding me her best tips but the funny thing is Teresa doesn’t even have her own blog. She doesn’t know anything about blogging apart from what I’ve told her, and she wouldn’t normally read any blogs, but when I started blogging she read mine because she wanted to support me.

That’s because we our friendship is based on supporting each other to achieve our goals. We do also have shared interests in poker, dancing and white wine, but that’s another story. Teresa and I met in Costa Rica and started a writing group there based on a shared goal of wanting to improve our writing skills. Teresa liked my writing and I loved hers but mostly we enjoyed each other’s company.

In fact, we liked each other so much that after considerable debate we didn’t invite anyone else to join the writing group. It was just the two of us at Teresa’s kitchen table every Thursday night with a bottle of wine and our writing.

The idea was to encourage and motivate each other to write anything at all when we could have just as easily been surfing, practising our spanish with the friendly locals or hanging out in the jungle with the monkeys and sloths. We were accountable to each other and we agreed never to criticise and always keep the feedback positive.

Our exclusive writing group wasn’t just fun. It worked and we both wrote lots. Then I spoilt it by moving to Australia and soon after that Teresa moved to England but she still carried on encouraging me to write and she did it in a public forum by leaving comments on my new blog for all to see.

There are almost 100 comments from Teresa on my blog now, even though she hasn’t left many recently because she moved back to Costa Rica and getting online is tricky there.

3 Big Blogging Problems For New Bloggers

I didn’t realise at first but Teresa’s comments solved these three big problems for new bloggers:

1. Low motivation

60-80% of blogs are jettisoned by their authors less than 30 days after being started. Knowing that Teresa would be checking up on me motivated me to keep blogging even when I was tempted to give up;

2. Lack of social proof

It’s human nature to want to be where other people are. Having comments on your blog shows other readers that your blog is read, enjoyed and engaging. Teresa’s comments made me and my blog look cool, interesting and loved;

3. Complacency

When your blog is new and you don’t have many readers there is a tendency to think that it doesn’t really matter if some of your blog posts are a bit off topic, badly written or of limited value to your readers. Knowing someone read my blog made me keep trying to improve my blog. Teresa made me keep trying to put only my best writing up there.

The Power of Blog Comments

In short, Teresa took me from being a depressed new blogger with only a handful of readers to a blogger with scores of posts, an established blog and an engaged community of appreciative readers. She single handedly fixed those three big problems most new bloggers have.

Here’s an excerpt from Teresa’s first comment ever:

“You’re sooo funny!”

Four posts later, and she commented on every one of them, she left this comment:

“Go Girl! Your best ever piece…passion, enthusiasm, encouragement…I love it!”

Comments like this one poured in from her:

“Wow I didn’t realise just how much I loved receiving your blogs until I thought I had missed one.”

It’s easy to see why those glowing comments kept me motivated but they also made me strive to publish only my best writing and showed other blog readers that I had something good to offer.

Blog comments are essential to a new blog’s success to:

  • motivate you;
  • give you ideas for other posts;
  • provide social proof.

I love getting comments on my blog posts because they;

  • let my readers have their say
  • turn a monologue into a conversation;
  • make my posts more interesting and deep;
  • let blog readers add their tips;
  • let me and readers find out about other blog readers;
  • build a community.
  • Show the post is well read, useful and enjoyable.

A blog without comments is like a party with no people. You can’t get out of there fast enough.

But when your blog’s new you probably won’t have many readers, let alone comments. Just by reading my blog and leaving comments Teresa kept me motivated, made me try my best and made me look popular.

1 Easy Solution: Blogging Buddies

You can’t have Teresa but you can solve these problems for yourself by getting a blogging buddy who leaves regular comments on your blog.

Finding a Blogging Buddy

First try asking your friends or relatives. I was lucky that Teresa just took it upon herself to comment on my blog regularly, but if you tell a trusted friend or relative what you’d like them to do and why, they’ll probably help out.

If that’s not an option then find an interesting blog that’s similar in age, style or topic to yours and leave the lucky blogger a comment. If they then visit your blog and leave you a comment, keep reciprocating and see where it leads. It could be the start of a beautiful blogging buddy relationship.

If you want recommendations for people with interesting, growing blogs check out the people who comment on Problogger – they’re obviously dedicated to blogging success and might like the idea of getting a blogging buddy too. Or seek out like-minded bloggers on sites like Twitter, LinkedIn or Brazen Careerist.

If you another blogger leaves a comment on your blog go back and leave a comment on their blog. With luck the blogging buddy relationship will grow naturally from that. If you find a friend who doesn’t have a blog but wants to support you with yours I recommend you help another budding blogger by commenting on their blog. Giving something back to other people really does make you feel happier in yourself. I love leaving comments on other people’s blogs and it’s a great way to start networking with people.

The more blogging buddies you can get in the beginning the better. You can tide each other over until you really do build up a good community of readers who care about what you write and leave you comments.

Have fun finding a blogging buddy. I hope they’ll be as enthusiastic and supportive in their role as Teresa was and that you’ll be able return the favor. I’ve got a few blogging buddies now and I’m still trying to get Teresa to start her own blog and share her writing with the world. Hopefully one day I’ll be able to kick start her blogging journey as she did mine.

What do you think? Would you like a blogging buddy or have you already got one? If you haven’t, check out some of the other commenters’ blogs and leave them a comment. You never know, it could be the start of a beautiful blogging relationship and a long-lasting, successful blog.

Annabel Candy covers business, success, writing and blogging tips at Get In the Hot Spot. Subscribe free by email or RSS feed to stay motivated and learn how to win business and influence people online.

About Guest Blogger
This post was written by a guest contributor. Please see their details in the post above.
Comments
  1. I’d love to have a blogging buddy!

    Our blog gets relatively few comments and while I know that hobbyist (not for profit) blogging should probably be more about the creative outlet and sharing, a little validation along the way sure helps!

  2. A great idea! First one off the rank. Who wants to blogger buddy with PersonalShoplifter.com?

  3. I haven’t reciprocated with my blogging buddies much by commenting back on their blogs. Complacency and procrastination. But, I do recognise some frequent readers’ comments and I tag them in meme’s.

  4. Kay Bigelow says: 09/13/2010 at 1:50 am

    I hadn’t thought about a blogging buddy or two. That’s a great idea. Now to find other authors who need a blogging buddy. Would that we all had a Teresa in our lives.

    Kay
    http://kaybigelow1.blogspot.com/

  5. Great advice. I’ve got a few blogging buddies who comment regularly. I have lots of ‘lurkers’ as well….wish I could get them to comment. I spend time reading other blogs, but it is difficult to find blogs in my niche. I’m mainly humor/satire with some middle-aged issues and LOTS about my wiener dog.
    Love your photography tips. They are always helpful and right on point. Let me know if you are ever in Texas.

  6. Well said mate .. all of these things run so true .. yes i also started making some blogging buddies on twitter .. about 2 months back and this helps you grow. 80 % of blog startups are dead withing their first 6 months coz authors loose their interest. All of these tips will surely go a long way with me.Thnx Mate..

    Cheers
    Sid

  7. Interesting idea – While I’m no beginner to blogging, it’s one I’ve been implementing, although in a bit different fashion.

    A few weeks ago, I decided it was time to step up my game in terms of the quality of articles I was pumping out and how my message was presented. Therefore, I got in touch with another blogger my age (who is relatively new to blogging) but as serious about his writing as I am mine.

    We agreed to submit our weekly article(s) to each other every Saturday and on Sunday night we meet either over the phone or on Skype chat. We go over our writing goals for the week and help with minor editing we may have missed before our posts go live the following days.

    Something else we really focus on is accountability. Our growing audiences are very important to us. So we are very strict with what we publish and we make darn certain our message is of utmost quality and the highest standard. If it’s not, we call each other on the content and fix it.

  8. Having someone to help keep you motivated can really make a difference. It is easy to put off doing that next post if it is just you, put if you have a friend there to remind you that you need to do it, it can make the difference.
    I think a lot of bloggers give up before they can see the results. I think mutual support can go a long way to keep the enthusiasm going till the blog can really show results.

  9. I have several blogging buddies. The relationships stared simple enough where we would leave comments on each other’s blogs. That was years ago.
    Today I’m really good friends with some of these people and we correspond by email and post as well.

  10. Yes, you were lucky to have Teresa.

    Having a blogging buddy is one of the blogging commandments I keep.

    I am lucky to have my sister as a blogging buddy. We always comment on each others blogs. We link to each other when we can. We retweet each other.

    She will also review what I write and edit for me.

    We both have different talents. I am more tech minded and she is a graphics artist and knows photo shop. So we help each other out in those areas.

    A blogging buddy is a must. I think keeping me motivated has been the best part.

  11. well said. two is definitely better than one

  12. Raul Sim says: 09/13/2010 at 5:21 am

    I’d like to be your blogging buddy! I love to help starters.

    If you want me to read and comment your blog, send me an email with your link to this email address:

    [email protected]

  13. Annabel, as you know, I’ve already written about my first comment from someone NOT related to me, and it happened to be you.

    Comments are so exciting, I love when the conversation gets extended past the post itself. The post can feel like a lecture, where the comments feel like a collective workshop.

    Cheers!

  14. Annabel, You really know how to help people get their blogs off the ground! We all do need encouragement on this sometimes lonely road. The idea of a blogging buddy is excellent for the many reasons you reveal in this article.

  15. Wow! You really have a unique style of writing. This post could quite easily have been named something like “Why you definitely need a blogging buddy”, but you kept it personal, attractive and unique!
    Annabel, you introduced a relatively new concept, that of Blogging Buddies with great simplicity and grasp over the topic. I for one have never been so profoundly motivated by any single blog post!

  16. I agree with you 100%.
    I started my blog exactly 1 month ago, and am lucky to have 2 followers from the beginning that I did not at all before. One was the first to comment on my blog and she has done so for every single post. The other one has a great blog (A Girl, A Style) that I used as a reference when I was building mine up; I left comments on her blog and reached out to her to ask for advice, and we have been exchanging emails and comments since.
    I know these blogging buddies have the same interests as me and being grateful to them, I want to write my best so I don’t disappoint them. And it turns out that 2 weeks after I started my blog, WordPress.com featured one of my posts on Freshly pressed! I’m not sure this would have happened had I had only random readers on my blog.

  17. It’s funny, my girlfriend who is also a blogger offered to comment on my blog more often when I started, but I didn’t want her to in case it looked like I was trying to inflate my comment count. After reading this post I can see I was naive. Great post, and very thought provoking!

    And I have a somewhat blogging buddy in a fellow blogger from Italy, who over the last couple of years has left a lot of comments and even followed me when I had to move my blog from one place to another!

  18. Yes, a bunch of Blogging Buddies can do wonders. Thanks A.C you reminded me once again, what I’ve read one of Darren eBook around 8 months before.

  19. Now *that* is probably the most helpful informative and timely blog I have read in a very long time.

    Thank you.
    I’d love to stay and chat, but am off to connect with some lovely folks who may just say yes to beeing my blogging Buddy.

    Soooz.

  20. I have a new site and found your tips really hhelpful!
    I can imagine sites fail after under 6 months, it’s a difficult balance, you want to promote your site, but you need content, but you don’t want a bunch of content that no one is reading. By having a buddy or two.. you are more accountable for your writing and keeping it up.
    Thanks for this article!

  21. I need a blogging buddy for the blog that I am in the process of starting.

    This is a great piece of advice, and one that I didn’t follow for my first blog. It was hard to keep going when I didn’t receive any new comments, or other encouraging words (except from Mom, of course.)

  22. I also would love a blogging buddy. I’m finding myself really lacking in keeping up with my blog lately because it seems like nobody cares. Nobody says, “Hey! Weren’t you supposed to post about “X” today? I only get a heap of spam comments most of the time.

    Are there any creative writing bloggers out there? Even if you are not, I’m sure we could learn from one another.

  23. Annabel, Is it me or is your post almost the same as the 31 day challenge. Where one of the challenges was to find a blog buddy? Not being a wise butt, just asking. However I do like your post:). When I changed my blog over to WP on July 12th, sine then I have 41 comments, I know its not alot but its way better than where I had my blog. I joined blotanical, since my blog is on gardening. Thats where I got some of my comments since I leave comments on other garden blogs.

  24. I also would love a blogging buddy. I’m finding myself really lacking in keeping up with my blog lately because it seems like nobody cares. Nobody says, “Hey! Weren’t you supposed to post about “X” today? I only get a heap of spam comments most of the time.

    Are there any creative writing bloggers out there? Even if you are not a creative writing blogger, I’m sure we could learn from one another.

  25. I really need to get a blogging buddy because am relatively new to blogging. Viperchill too made mention of finding a blogging buddy to support and encourage one another. Comments let you know that people are following your blog and appreciating your contents.

    Does anyone in the personal development niche need a blogging buddy?

  26. Rob, you can find one!

    Kim, we met at Darren’s conference and I commented on your blog:) Great to see you here:)

    Anne, the more the merrier. I love your story. Likewise I have many and it has brought me some great friendships. Not every comment will lead to anything but in my experience some comments will lead to something truly amazing.

    Sheila, that sounds like a great thing espcially as you can share skills. Now if you can find another buddy each there will be four of you in the team:)

    Raul, you’re fanatastic, I hope people get the message and some cool blogging buddies come your way!

    Joshua and Sandra you’re two of the amazing people that I’ve met through commenting on other people’s blogs. It’s amazing really. I hope more people will reach out to other bloggers and experience it for themselves.

    Ritournelle, thanks for sharing your inspring blogging buddy story – love it!

    Supermarket Soap, I’d nurture anyone who comments, they sound like great people.

    Tony, lol, well I did read that excellent book over a year ago. Can’t say I remember that page but I’m sure it exists since you say it does. The idea may be the same but I know the post and story are very different because they’re personal to me. Hope your blog and garden keep growing:)

  27. Comments make a difference. I’m thankful to have a few comments on my blog posts. I have to admit I like leaving comments more. I know that bloggers work hard and a comment is a stamp of approval.

  28. Great post. I feel inspired to look for blog buddies.

  29. Thanks for the great ideas!

    I’m a virgin blogger (7-ish posts so far) who’d be happy to have a blogging buddy (or 2, or 3). If you get time to comment authentically and thoughtfully on any of my blog posts, I’ll very happily do the same for you.

    Thanks in advance.
    Meg

  30. Yes, blogging buddies are really important for me at my first months of blogging. Now I think I need to show them my appreciation more… Thank you for this post :)

  31. Its been a while since I commented on Problogger. Sure I’ve been reading nearly all of the posts, but this is the first post I’m commenting on in a long time.

    This simple thing is such an easy tip, and it gives me an idea of how to get others to keep updating. Thanks!

  32. As a newbie to the automotive blogging world, a buddy sounds like a fantastic idea!

  33. Ok – I am going to put this post into practice right now! Who is in the social news niche and looking for a blog buddy? Drop me a line :D Nice post!

  34. Hi Annabel,

    This is a great post and I really love the idea of a blogging buddy.

    If I may, I would like to point out that your post contains a significant amount of grammatical errors. As a fellow copywriter, I understand that this does happen occasionally, especially when one is in a rush to publish great content. However, I do urge you to proofread your post again because you have been provided with a great opportunity to gain exposure for your site on Problogger and it seems a shame to detract from it.

    I hope you understand that this comment was made in good faith and not intended as any type of one-upmanship.

    Best,

    Sarah

  35. Great post. Starting a new blog is not easy when it’s not obvious that someone is reading, but I agree that the buddy system is a wonderful motivator.

  36. A great post! I really like the idea of a Blogging buddy and am open to the idea. I always respond to comments left on my blog that require it and even some that don’t but my niche is sometimes very limited on openness and how people interact so I am working on leaving the posts with with questions and other techniques I have learned here about inciting comments. Looking forward to finding a potential blog buddy if anyone is into reptiles and insects please drop by!

  37. I am missing a blogging buddy here. In fact, I thought of giving up my blogging, but the only thing which keeps me here, is the money that I am earning with my services. Hope I will get a blogging buddy, soon.

  38. Annabel,

    Blogging buddies – what a brilliant idea. And I must confess I need a few blogging buddies, which you can see if you look at my blog. Okay, so now I know what I need to do next…

    Terry

  39. From my stats, its around one comment per 500 views. In the beginning it just feels like robots are clicking on the site and videos.

    After a while it gets easier and if you have a blogging mate then it can make the time go much quicker!…

    Nice post…

    :]

    David Edwards

  40. This is a great idea! I am a new blogger too and I cover movies, books, TV shows, games and other forms of media. It’s been 3 months since I started and I am just starting to build a small readership.

    If any of you are interested in being a blogging buddy for me, then I would highly appreciate it and would be more than happy to return the favor. Please let me know by commenting on my blog!

  41. I have used this way by droping comments with like minded bloggers and in return responded well and right now I am having around 8 to 10 blogging friends in my niche.

  42. Hi Annabel,

    I love this post. I have blogging buddies through my presence on Facebook and the Unified Tribe, notably. I love reading their posts because I learn a lot and it makes me really feel good about myself if I can help others.

    Thanks for sharing.

    Take care

    Oliver

  43. Blogging for beginners is hard as we find numbers of active bloggers online. Before, begining any blog any blogger should keep the above described points in mind.

    Writing for others blog and inviting others to write for your blog is another good way to promote blog that is through guest blogging.

    I really appreciate your post and thanks for sharing a valuable stuff for bloggers.

  44. The power of blogging buddies is often overlooked. This article just hits the truth.

    Moreover, it will be great to look through the comments and find a buddy who needs a buddy.

    @ Sathish @ TechieMania – I’d love to be your buddy!

    Thanks for the article Annabel Candy.

  45. One good place to find a blogging buddy is at blogcatalog. It is a social network for bloggers. If you follow any blogger, it might look you are a spammer, the best way to go about it is to follow bloggers based on your niche.

  46. I guess I would say I do- I have a friend I met through an online biz whom I speak with once a week. we brainstorm blogging and business strategies.

    Accountability partners are great.

  47. I have been visiting problogger for a couple months now, and love it! Great advice. I was a little backwards, started a blog before ever even reading or commenting on other blogs before. So blogging buddies were even more important to me. Got some gals to do a product review for me on their blogs, and then asked if they would mind being my mentors. It was a great way to build a working relationship, and they got to know me as a business person. Now, we are all blog buddies and support one another! Great post.
    ~Judy

  48. Hi Annabel,

    I love this post. My sister just told me about this yesterday. Now I am sure that this will solve the problem of lack of social proof on my blog.

    Thanks

  49. Very good piece. I have tried to establish such relationships by doing that very thing but have found that most don’t have time to do it in return but I do keep trying.