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Monday, August 08, 2011

On blogging style and identity

This weekend I was thinking about my blog and my blog identity. It's not a secret that I'd like to figure out how to have more blog traffic but if you've been a reader for any length of time you know that my posting has gotten a bit sporadic lately. This is partly because I'm just crazy busy all the time and my blog feels like an indulgence, but it's also because I've realized that my blog lacks cohesion.  There are plenty of bloggers who do completely unrelated blog entries and it works really well for them, and while that's the type blog I'd most like to have, it's been a bit discouraging.

In the midst of all this self-indulgent introspection, I read two posts about blog identity, which gave me more food for thought. First, I read a post about sitting down and making goals for your blog, maybe "increase traffic" or "learn SEO" or "post every day" and I actually took notes!  It suggested that you find your niche, which seems hard to do when you blog so randomly, but it did get me to thinking that perhaps I could slightly change my posting style to make the randomness less random.  I started to pay attention to other bloggers who seem to pack a lot of everything into one post and how they did it. I don't want to copy their style, but I'm going to start intentionally altering mine. Slightly.  Unfortunately most of the bloggers who blog in that style also lead off with a terrific photo, and my photos are a lot more snapshot and a lot less pretty, but I'm going to give it a shot.

The second post I read about blog identity was from my very good friend Trish. Yesterday she wrote a post about her blogger identity, and moving away from book blogging and into being "Just a Blogger." (It will seem to you that I am posting because she did, but really, I was thinking about it prior to reading her post!) I've never been a strict book blogger. I did used to post a lot more about what I read, and I still imagine that one day I'll do it again, but I've never been a hardcore book reviewer. I've always talked about more personal stuff, so I don't think that most of my readers will be surprised when I say that I'll continue to post about anything.   What I have always done though, is try to confine each post to ONE topic. If I'm talking about a book that's all the post is about. If it's about camping, it's about camping. Etc. I always thought that this was a way to make it easier for those of you not interested in reading about camping to just skip that post.  Then you didn't miss anything else I might say that might interest you.  The problem with this model is that you end up with a big handful of topics that you don't have quite enough to post about. Posts get skimpy because you (I) think that a little more research or thought needs to go into those posts, and who has time for that? Then the posts aren't written and you end up with a blog that gets a Random Friday post every week and that's about it.

So what does all this mean for my blog, specifically? Probably not a lot on your end. On my end, I'm hoping to write slightly broader posts. For example, instead of just "reviewing" the last book I read, I might want to talk a bit about it, and a bit about how it relates to me, or to how I associate it with where I was when I read it, or something. I want to do more of the "what we're loving now" type posts.   I'd like to put a little more thought into each post. Expect that posts might ramble more (hey! like this one!)   I'll probably change my Friday posting. I love the  "this moment" posts on Soule Mama, so maybe I will do those. I love my weekly post on what I'm reading though, so I will continue that. I'd like to expand it a bit, actually, and so will likely move it to another regular day. I'll still talk too much about my kids and I'll still continue to spam you with sewing and shop items.  I'd like to take suggestions from you on what you'd like to see. On what you hate to see. On how many pictures of the Princess is too many pictures of the Princess.

And it's completely possible that I won't change at all, because y'all, change is hard.

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  1. With three small children, I'm in awe that you have time to blog at all. I should probably sit down and make some goals, too, but who has time for all of that?

  2. I find that link ups increase traffic more than anything else.

    I would suggest NOT tying yourself down to more than a few-five posts per week.

    I personally love when someone writes more than just the typical review...and have attempted some of that myself. I also love children's books, and like hearing recommendations, too.

  3. I do only what I am physically capable of doing and refuse to do anything that isn't fun to me. So if I skip a Sunday Salon because I am out living life, then so be it. I've learned to be a bit more lax in that area.

    I like your random stuff, even though I know you feel as if you need more structure.

  4. Lisa, first I found you on your other blog and then started reading here. What attracted me to this blog was that you posted about your life. I come to your blog because I've become interested in you and your family. You have become a blogland friend.

    This is your blog; you do what you want with it. But, guess I'm going to ask you, "Why do you want more readers here?"

  5. I like your blog just the way it is :) I love reading your random Friday posts and I enjoy your short posts with pieces here and there. I think that over time everyone considers changes for your blog...I hope you find what works for you! m

  6. You can never talk to much about the kids or have too many pictures of the Princess (or the Bug or the Pirate)! Good luck with the changes.

  7. I agree with Annette that link-ups tend to increase traffic but they have gotten such a bad wrap in the book circles. Funny because you see this all the time amongst other circle of bloggers--seems like most posts are meme or link up type posts! But don't forget that traffic and audience aren't always the same thing...and honestly I think audience takes more work than just boosting your traffic?

    I like the random style that you have.

  8. totally! blogging is weird yet addicting. we all want to feel like people are reading/care. love this post, so true:)

  9. i think blogging is a bit cyclical--i tend to blog and comment more in the winter when i'm home and the weather is not sunny and gorgeous. i live in a beach town, so i love to hit the beach during my summer vacation from school. as for a blogging identity, on my blog i seem to get more hits and comments when i post a bit about my personal life in relationship to books or travel. also, my how-tos and interviews have been popular, too. start to use really specific tags on your posts and you might see more traffic.


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