The other day I was driving with my friend Diane. As we drove to pick up a pizza for our kids, Diane, an editor for a major New York City newspaper said to me, “you know, I never read blogs. I read news and regular websites, but I don’t read blogs.”
A couple of weeks earlier, I co-hosted a retirement party for my mother. Most in attendance were over the age of 60. When asked by our guests what I’m doing for work these days, I responded that I’m a professional blogger. More than half of the people who asked had no clue what a blog was, and the rest of the people don’t believe they ever visited a blog.
Do only bloggers visit blogs?
I’ve come to the conclusion that the majority of people who visit blogs are other bloggers. Why is this? Is it because people who don’t blog don’t see us as a legitimate source? I have nothing against other bloggers dropping by, but I’m always interested in briging in more traffic. Eventually that’s going to have reach beyond the blogosphere. Now, if you’re only interested in other bloggers reading your blog, you probably have no use for the rest of this post. If you’d like to consider bringing in other types of web surfers, the non-bloggers, read on.
What do non bloggers read?
I know lots of non-bloggers and most of them spend at least an hour or two online. So what are they doing? Well, some play games or troll for porn, while others read news or gossip. They look for jobs, electronics, cars or homes and research information for school. Most of their sources are found using search engines, others come from links at forums or news sites.
How do you bring the non bloggers to your blog?
Good question. If these people are all hanging out at CNN.com or Realtor.com, why are they going to visit your measly little blog and how will they find it anyway?
SEO – If you want to bring in the non- bloggers you have to be at the top of the search engines. Optimize your content and get it on the first page.
Comment – Many online news sources allow you to comment at the bottom of each article. Register and do so.
Issue a press release – Seriously. Is your pet blog offering a contest? Did you recently win an award? Did one of your posts receive 1500 Diggs? Issue a press release. Not only will this show up on the search engines, but there’s a good chance it will be read and picked up, by all the major news outlets. If they like what you have to say, they may link to you.
Visit forums within your niche – Dazzle then with your brilliance and they’re sure to follow.
Write for the local newspaper or magazine – Offer your services as a guest columnist or write an Op-Ed piece. Make sure you leave a short bio at the bottom with a link to your blog.
Attend seminars, conferences and lectures – Afterwards give out your business card. Better yet, offer your own lectures.
They do read blogs, they just don’t know it
In short, if you want to bring in the non bloggers, you have to hang out where they hang out. Find out where that is and don’t be shy. Personally, I’m of the opinion that some of the above referenced people do read blogs they just don’t know it. However, telling the difference between a blog and a website is a whole other post.