Letting Life Lead
Today is my son’s third birthday which is why the posts have been thin on the ground today. The first post in my blog feed today after I got through catching up with responding to comments and visiting new people was one from Harsh Reality: Blogging — Everyone Becomes a Silent Reader and Some Always Were. It’s a blog that has inspired me to stop worrying about “rules” and just to do what I always wanted to do in terms of interacting with the Blogiverse. I am random and haphazard with a very diverse interest in topics. I am not a jack-of-all-trades type, but more of a know-enough-to-get-myself-into-trouble type. I have a visual in my head of what the Blogiverse looks like to me. At first it was a cacophony that I had trouble making sense of because I was used to a much smaller, much more intimate internet. I was from the land of online-text games, bulletin boards, topic-specific groups, and — back in the day — chats and pre-AOL messengers. The world of the blog is vast.
The Blogiverse Zones I see are “Diner”, “Coffee Shoop”, and “Cocktail Party”
RRR: The Readers Rarely Responding are sitting at the diner counter reading the newspaper. If they look up from their browsing they will only speak to the people who happen to be around them reading their own newspapers. They may engage in a short conversation on that one topic and may never be heard from again. There’s a lot of paper left to read after all! They are more inclined to click “like” than to comment. They may like more consistency in posts so that they know that when they get up at 6AM a post is waiting for them. Their follow list is likely highly selective.
RHO: The Readers Hanging Out tend to hand out at the coffee shop next door at the same table and comment mostly only in that area. Their favorite blogs are the ones they visit first and they may not have time to venture away to show themselves elsewhere. RHO are the readers who come back and comment a lot, but you first have to get them to your table. They are the ones who will post inquiries of “where the hell are you” if they haven’t seen a post from their favorites in a while. They have a more generous follow finger than RRR but are still selective; probably preferring to like instead.
RWM: The Readers Who Mingle are at the cocktail party like to spread the love a little. They go from group to group. While they do visit their favorite people, they also leave time to seek out new and interesting conversations. These readers will come back to their favorite blogs, but if the can be spirited away if there isn’t new stuff to hold their interest. They probably don’t care when the posts pop-up as long as they happen on a regular basis.
RWB: The Readers Who Blitz travel from one place to another on a tangent. You know, the friend you haven’t seen in a while and they are really full of reviving gab, but then they disappear randomly. They don’t have a specific hangout or group, but they may tend to start their journey the last place that held their attention. They may start out on a familiar path and then go, “Oooh, shiney newness!” or “SQUIRREL”. These are the ones who will comment and vanish, but they can be drawn back if you catch them quick enough. If you can get them to always start their blitz and wanderings at your blog they will comment the most consistently and often prompt one of the other readers to respond. These are the readers that help get the conversation going. The likely click like and follow very often.
RWD: Readers who Drama don’t have a home base either. These are the ones that are a mixed bag. They tend to only comment on topics that piss them off or make them feel the passion. Either will keep coming back to comment. The drawback is that the Angry Drama’s can get a bit out of hand especially when the Passion Drama’s get pissed off with them. It’ll get your numbers soaring, but it may put off some of the regulars. It’s best to calculate your move when dealing with such a fray.
I think every single type of reader is important to generating engaged traffic to a blog (easy on the drama though…that’s like one of those hot sauces where you sign a waiver and you really should just use one spot on the tip of a thin toothpick). It is much like having a diverse group of friends or a study group that works well with each others strengths and weaknesses. That “party animal” can bring a lot of vibrant ideas, while the “stabilizers” can keep things on course.
Which type of reader are you? And what kind of readers are you attracting to your blog? What type of reader do you think I am?
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