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Follow Up to Where Are You Online

So I should have been more clear on yesterday’s #MicroblogMondays post. When I said where I am online, I meant where I post.  Let’s say that I start the week with 500 words to say on the Internet.  I’ll use about 300 of them here on Stirrup Queens.  I use about 150 of them on BlogHer.  And then I scatter the remaining 50 on Facebook, Twitter, Ello, etc.

If we were to look at what I’m actually doing online, you would see a grotesque amount of time given over to Hay Day.  Like take whatever you remember from my obsession with Candy Crush and dial it up to 11.  I wake up early to play that app.  It’s sick.  I miss out on 15 minutes of sleep so I can have time to virtually farm while I drink coffee.

Okay, so after Hay Day, you can find me on email or reading blogs when I’m not writing.

So how does all of that play into blog stats or Facebook friends or Twitter followers?  People tend to go where you are the most.  You know that if you want to hear what I have to say or see a picture I’m going to post, it’s going to be here.  No one would think to look for me over on Facebook.  I’m on there, but I’m certainly not updating there consistently.  Same goes for Twitter.  In both places, I tend to consume more than I produce; meaning, I read a lot but I don’t often post my own status updates.

It is hard to find the balance between being on social media accounts vs. being in your own space (your blog).  Sometimes people just prefer Facebook or Twitter, and they camp out on those sites, not really caring that people aren’t coming to their blog anymore.  But other times, I hear the frustration from people who have worked hard to build networks on those other sites because they were promised that it would drive traffic to their blog.  And it does.  But not if you’re camped out on those sites.  Because then people get the message that Facebook or Twitter or Pinterest or Google+ is where YOU want to communicate.  So they meet you in those spots and then don’t think to continue over to your blog.

It would be like meeting a friend for dinner, catching up through the meal, and THEN being surprised when you suggest a second meal back at your house but they turn you down.  Your friend is full.  They’ve already socialized with you.  Why would they want a second dinner?  (Except, of course, that sometimes a second dinner is delicious.)  The opposite scenario is walking through the restaurant, pausing at everyone’s table to say a few quick words, and then announcing that you’re holding a meal back at your place and leaving.  Some people will remain in the restaurant because that’s where they’re happy.  But people who want to hear what you have to say (or see what you’re serving) will come over to eat.

Did that make any sense?

I think the reason why I’ve never seen a rise or fall in blog traffic (everything has been pretty consistent for years) is because this is where you know you’ll find me.  Which isn’t to say that I won’t find you on those other sites.  I know some of you like Facebook or Twitter, so I visit you where YOU are.  But this is where I like to communicate, and this is where you will find the vast majority of my words.

If you miss your blog, I would join up with #MicroblogMonday next week. (Or hey, there is still time to do it this week.  I usually don’t close the list until late Tuesday afternoon to accommodate late stragglers.  There are a lot of people who microblog on Tuesdays.)  It’s a simple way to signal to people where you will consistently be on your blog every Monday.  You’ll be in your home; in your blog.  And once people know that, they will visit you there.  And you will meet new people who blog via that link up because I have met new people who blog via that link up, so I know that it is possible.  It has been one of the nicest weekly parties online.  It makes my whole week better to know I have dozens of posts to read before people scatter back to other social media sites.

6 comments

1 Amel { 11.04.14 at 5:43 am }

Hmmm…I post mostly in my blogs and in two Google+ groups. I try to spend less time in FB, though because I have many friends there who don’t blog or read my blog and they aren’t in any of the Google+ groups I joined, I also share some bits and pieces of myself in FB and some travel photos.

I think I have some readers for both my main blog and my infertility blog, but only a few commenters. I don’t actually mind that because I’ll feel swamped with too many commenters (I tend to want to reply to each one), but sometimes I wonder who else has been reading my blog regularly among those numbers and why they keep coming back.

In terms of an online conversation, I feel that being in the two Google+ groups is far more fulfilling than being in FB, but FB can be handy for other things (though has never been too fulfilling – I’ve always had a more-hate-than-love relationship with FB ever since the beginning).

2 Shail { 11.04.14 at 7:21 am }

My smaller posts used to go up immediately on Facebook, But with Microblog Monday, I am now keeping them aside to post on Mondays. Yes, that way I am back to spending more time on my blog page.

3 Tiara { 11.04.14 at 7:44 am }

I really like your analogy. I feel like I’m offering to host a meal at my place (blog) but everyone else is more content hanging at the restaurant (Facebook) so I become less motivated to prepare anything at my house (blog) since no one is stopping by anyway. But I don’t want to share my stuff on Facebook which leaves me feeling disconnected.

4 Karen (River Run Dry) { 11.04.14 at 8:09 am }

I love this. Like REALLY love this. I don’t know why I hadn’t considered it before… but wow, it makes a whole lot of sense.

5 Amber { 11.04.14 at 1:25 pm }

I have enjoyed the MicroblogMondays because it makes me post on my blog at least once a week, which I’ve always tried to do anyway, but now I do for sure! But if someone really wanted to connect with me, they would find me at Facebook most often.

6 loribeth { 11.04.14 at 1:37 pm }

I have tended to keep various segments of my life separate — although there is some overlap on Facebook. Most of my “real life” family members & friends know nothing about my blog (& I would prefer to keep it that way…), so they would look for me on FB. I do have some online/blogging friends that I am also friends with on FB. I was a bit leery about FB for that reason — bringing together the various compartments of my life. With one notable exception, it’s worked relatively well so far…

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