Read this you bastards…

Ok, so I have been blogging now for 3 weeks. I have dutifully written 10 posts and here are the results.

I have maxed out at 38 views and have 2, yes, 2 feed subscribers (hello both of you). I am averaging about 2-6 readers a post. I have no friends, I feel lonely, violated and down right miserable…

Joking aside, I think I am probably experiencing a common phenomenon. For most of us, blogging is a lonely sport in the beginning. Inevitably, your first few posts, or 10 in my case, go largely unread. So what can be done?

Well, I am obviously the wrong person to ask for the answers at this stage but I will not be deterred and will soldier on and try everything I can think of to build up my traffic. What have I tried so far? Well…

  • First of all, I only told 3 people directly that I had started blogging. I intended to tell noone but I couldn’t help myself. My idea was that I wanted to see how my readership would grow purely through the medium itself…
  • Next I lightheartedly outed someone with a bit of clout in my industry. I’m not sure how he found out but I guess it was through a mutual friend who was one of the people I told. This gave me an early peak in my traffic of 6… Not bad for a first post I thought.
  • I wandered a bit after that until I decided that I would try a trackback to Robert Scoble. I hit my peak there and thought I had stumbled upon a traffic goldmine. Turned out to be a bit of a fluke though as I have tried it since with more or less no effect. I think the title of my post actually naming Scoble had quite an influence on the success of this first attempt.
  • I tried the trackback route to a couple of other blogs without much effect. I reckon the trick with that is to get your comment in near the top of the comments on a popular post but I am yet to manage that so I can’t say for certain at this stage.

Stuff I haven’t tried yet:

  • Promising some kind of porn in the title and hoping to draw some traffic in from the recent posts section on WordPress. I suspect any success that this generates will be fleeting and I don’t anticipate a great deal of subscriptions being generated when the unsuspecting visitor finds out I am a speccy nerd.
  • Being abusive about another high profile blogger in a comment title. I am not generally an abusive person but I think this might work if carefully done. I would have to choose the victim carefully as most people would probably just delete the comment but if I chose someone who is a freedom of speech buff and did it semi-subtly then it just might work (captain).
  • Sprinkling some links in amongst the forums that I use. This is one of my more pleasant and positive ideas that I should probably have a crack at.
  • Telling more people about my blog. This would go against my initial experiment in flirting with the medium but I might have to give it a shot. I’ve been getting a bit more ‘community’ involved of late so perhaps I should make hay.
  • Exploring the aggregation, blog search, general bloggy stuff that is available on the web. Being a new blogger, I am only just starting to find out about all this stuff and there is probably something out there, who, if I could find them, maybe I could hire, the A Team…
  • Writing some interesting content that people would actually want to read. Now there is a thought…

21 Responses to “Read this you bastards…”

  1. 1 Phil Winstanley September 4, 2006 at 8:07 am

    Your writing is smooth and funny, the content is there, so either become more abusive or advertise more. Controversy sells (apparently).

  2. 2 Graham Pengelly September 4, 2006 at 8:44 am

    Cheers for the support and the link Phil… I have seen a bit of an upswing for today already.

    I have also tried a new tactic. I wrote a post about a bit of Microsoft/Google controversy (actually about malformed RSS probably but never let the truth stand in the way of a good story). Then I Digged (Dugg?) myself. I know, I feel a bit ashamed now as I am sure this isn’t what you are supposed to do but it worked, well a bit…

    While I was on the ‘upcoming posts’ list I sucked in a bit of traffic (about 15 views but that is quite good for me). I also got indexed by Technorati and some other blog indexer that I can’t remember the name of which can only help.

  3. 3 Frans Bouma September 4, 2006 at 9:24 am

    1) add your blog to blog aggregators. A lot of people subscribe to these aggregation feeds and your posts thus will be read by more people
    2) be sure your content is worth reading. Yet another blurp about that a new CTP/beta/whatever from MS is available is not useful, add some food for the mind.
    3) step into the spotlight, write about a controversial topic and vent your opinion, but be sure you have good arguments. There are already enough rants around the web 🙂

    With 3) you run the risk of getting linked to by another blogger, etc. so you get ‘into the web’ and people arrive at your blog, probably like your style/post and read other posts and decide to subscribe to your blog.

    Always remember: if a blog doesn’t really add something, it’s not worth subscribing 🙂

  4. 4 Graham Pengelly September 4, 2006 at 9:32 am

    Thanks for taking the time to give me some tips Frans… I’ll see what I can do 😉

  5. 5 query ref 1435 September 4, 2006 at 10:22 am

    attn blogger: no one is reading your blog. its not that its not good, its that no one knows youre out there. can you get a mention on tutorial sites or nerdy podcasts?

    do not respond to this message as it is an automatically generated message.

    from god
    (by the 5th separation)

  6. 6 vikram September 5, 2006 at 5:20 am

    I have also started blogging very recently. and am suffering from same syndrom as you. But to increase the trafic I have been trying to add some good content.
    One of my friend(Farghana) who is SEO in our company says that in long run the better content will be a winner and also keep updating or changing the content very fast

  7. 7 Graham Pengelly September 5, 2006 at 7:15 am

    Hi Vikram

    It certainly is a struggle… You have got yourself one new subscriber for taking the time to comment on my blog though 😉 I would definitely recommend writing a winging post like this one though. You never know, someone might take pity and link you… Thanks to Phil my traffic has improved no end. Nice on Phil, I’ll buy you a lemo’ at Geekup…

  8. 8 Simon September 5, 2006 at 3:35 pm

    Write something interesting, and then submit it to digg and reddit. It has to be interesting though 😉

  9. 9 Graham Pengelly September 5, 2006 at 3:46 pm

    Oh… well that is charming isn’t it. Are you trying to tell me that my bit of Microsoft/Google subterfuge wasn’t interesting? I was convinced that would have them flocking in. What is more I am sure the 16 people that read it enjoyed it very much. I like to think that they only didn’t digg it because they wanted to give everyone else a chance…

    Cheers Simon 😉

  10. 10 Blogs, news and more! January 12, 2007 at 4:01 pm

    I am just amazed at how well you write! Keep-on going you are just so good… mary

  11. 11 DangerzAU April 3, 2007 at 1:25 am

    G’day from Aust mate,

    Having exactly the same issues you are, no one wants to read my new boring ass blog.. lol Thats not to say that yours is boring, Just i figure thats the reason no ones reading mine.

    So in a vain attempted to get noticed I even added a trackback to your article here… Bare with me i’m just starting out, so if I aint done something correctly just let me know.

    I also have to agree with Mary, I do enjoy your writing style, so will continue to check back.. hell why dont i even use the rss feed 🙂


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  1. 1 Plip's Weblog Trackback on September 4, 2006 at 8:06 am
  2. 2 Why wont people read this damn blog - USA-MS Trackback on April 3, 2007 at 1:20 am

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