Is Blog Engagement More Important Than Stats?

Is blog engagement more important than stats

I’ve noticed recently, there seem to be a lot of interesting articles about what it is to be a blogger, or the new form that blogging has taken in the last few years.

We’re now “influencers”.

The blogging world has moved from an online-diary-style chat platform, to a glossy, perfected magazine. It’s overtaking physical magazines on the shelves and brands are cashing in on the online world. Creators are cropping up all over the place and the importance of wonderful wording, immaculate photography and top notch coding, SEO and web design has become even more evident.

But I don’t mind.

After all, the increased online engagement has opened up space for sassy, incredible, determined business ladies (and men of course) to find a space for themselves, to be their own bosses and get out there and hustle. So why shouldn’t they?! If you have the ability to set yourself up as a self employed blogger or vlogger, and make enough to support yourself and live the kind of life you want, then go for it. After all, blogging is brilliant fun. You are part of a community of like-minded, driven and interesting people all shouting about the things they are currently loving, or thinking about.

The very reason I started a blog was because I read so many of them already, and enjoyed what all these brilliant people had to say, I figured, maybe I could contribute too?!

So I do. I write posts, and try and put my thoughts and discoveries and ideas and hobbies into one space, using a range of categories from my favourite things in life. Then I also try and engage with those I find most interesting. I go to events locally, I organise blogger brunches, I chat on twitter with those further afield, I join in conversations and retweet and like on Instagram. I comment on posts I’ve read.

This is a big one.

I find blog engagement really tells a lot about someone. Some of the biggest influencers I follow still reply to every comment, send something back to every tweet, reply to each email. Now I’m sure there gets a point where this is impossible, but having that engagement with your followers is surely so important? If you’ve taken the time out to read their post, tell them! Even if you disagreed with what they were saying, spark a conversation about it, show them you’re listening!

This is what I wish brands focused on more when they’re advertising campaigns. Yes, you might have a DA score of 5869384 because your blog is 10 years old and you’ve spammed a load of links all over the web (or have actually worked really hard at increasing it, I get that too), but do you actively engage with your readers, and those you’re reading? You may have tens of thousands of Twitter followers, but when was the last good chat you got yourself involved in?

I love it when a post I’ve written gets lots of comments, and not just for reasons you’d immediately think. Yes, it gives you an idea that people have read and enjoyed it. But it also strikes up new conversations, swaps experiences and adds more information or depth to what you’re saying. If I’ve made the effort to read a post, I’ll make the effort to engage with it, through comments or shares on social media. The same applies if someone has engaged with my posts. I have replied to every single comment that someone has written and I’m proud of that fact! We need to build a blogging culture of supporting each other, letting others know that you’ve loved something they’ve done, and adding positivity to this community we’re all part of online.

So if you are sat there worrying about your low stats compared to the big time bloggers, just remember that brands, readers and bloggers also massively take blog engagement into account and numbers really aren’t everything!

 

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  • It’s great that you manage to respond to every comment – it’s something I’ve certainly noticed you doing. I try to comment on any blog I read that resonates with me, although this doesn’t apply to all of them, and receiving a comment on a blog post I’ve written is ace even though my blog is definitely ‘old-school’.

    • Thanks! I think that all comments are great to receive, but even nicer if someone has something to add or something extra, as a comment saying “nice post” only really allows you to say thanks and that’s it! You’re right, commenting for the sake of commenting is time consuming, but if you’ve really enjoyed a post it’s an appreciative thing to do! I’ve definitely found having the plug-in Disqus really helps as it stays logged in on everyone’s blogs. When people have the standard WordPress commenting system it’s annoying having to write a comment, then enter all the info to allow you to sign in, then it refreshes the page and you lose the comment (unless you’ve remembered to copy it before hand) and by that point, you have to remember what you said before! xxx

  • NatalieLeanne

    I find engagement SO important! I look up to all the bloggers that have a huge following, but still take the time to reply often to comments! xx

    http://www.natalieleanne.com

    • Same, I think it’s a great thing, even if you are a blogger, Youtuber or just Twitter/Insta famous to actually spend the time to reply and engage with your audience! It does take time, but it’s so nice as a commenter to know that your effort has been read and responded to! xxx

  • Comments make me really happy too – it totally sucks that they’ve gone down in general in recent times. I read a LOT of posts, and try to engage as much as I can, and it’s something I definitely want to keep trying to do more of!

    Milly
    mini-adventures.com

    • Well it’s certainly appreciated, thanks Milly! I know what you mean as well, comments and engagement do seem to have dropped – have you noticed it on your blog too? I wondered if it was an all-round blogging thing or not? xxx

  • I LOVE the engagement, it’s certainly why I’m here as a reader! I have read some blogs for 7-8 years, and feel so connected to the blog owner!
    I’m disappointed that a limited handful of my fave bloggers DON’t RESPOND to comments as a majority rule, (like really disappointed) but I get the time commitment must be huge, but still I don’t comment on those blogs now as I find the one way conversation pointless personally!

    • Ahhh yay thanks Holly, well I certainly appreciate the responses, you’re a great commenter! I know what you mean about losing enthusiasm for commenting if you don’t get a response, I know it would take a whole but if you’ve made the effort to engage with it, it’s polite and interesting to reply and start a proper conversation :) xxxx

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  • As much as I love those months where I get great page views, nothing ever beats a tweet or an e-mail from someone saying that you’re inspired them, asking for your advice or saying how much they enjoy reading. it gives me the greatest buzz, far better than any stats!

    • Definitely, that personal touch to show that you’ve inspired or influenced or just plain given someone something nice to read is such a lovely feeling. Increasing your stats, no matter how slowly, is satisfying to show progression, but having people engage with what you’re saying is far more beneficial! xxx

  • oh and I’m shamefully rubbish at replying to my blog comments!

    • I wouldn’t have said you’re too bad – I feel like I often get a reply when I comment on your posts! I try and do mine as soon as I see it and have a moment, else I’ll totally forget to! xxx

  • Kate – gluten free alchemist

    I think it is so important to respond to comments…. If people take the time to read and let you know what they think, then you should acknowledge that.
    My stats always feel woefully bad compared to the rest of the world and I get really really frustrated with the whole social media, sparkly, techy world that blogging has become…… (It’s great that people make blogging their career, but when you are also running a full-time job alongside blogging, it feels impossible to get your voice heard because you simply haven’t the time to shout through SM all day everyday), so I have to keep keep keep reminding myself that my little blog was started for other, less commercial reasons and that the is just fine!
    But big or not….. engagement is essential! x

    • Hi Kate, yes i totally agree! I never set up my blog to make a career of it, and I also just don’t have the capacity to continuously tweet and instagram everything I’m doing, so I try and focus on here, and post as regularly as my schedule allows without crippling me from tiredness and lack of motivation. As much as my blog is still small in it’s following, I’m so glad to have a keen tribe of people who come back again and again to comment on what I’ve written! What do you do as a full-time job? xxx

  • I completely agree with this, I would much prefer to get some thoughtful comments and strike up a conversation than get bogged down in the numbers. I feel that way about friendships offline so why wouldn’t I still feel that way about my blog? S x

    • That’s such a valid point Sam, I think its so true. Thank you for being an online friend and taking the time to comment, it’s so appreciated!! xxx

  • Zed

    I’m a new blogger, so it often feels like I’m just writing letters out into the universe with no reply. So, I get really happy when I get comments.
    Mind The Medic

    • So true, it does take some time to start getting replies, and I think it can also really be determined by your audience too as even some huge bloggers don’t get that many comments! Still, means when you do, it makes them all the more sweeter! xxx

  • So needed to read this right now. I’ve been feeling down about my blog AND Instagram this month, and I decided to take a break from looking at my analytics recently because it was just making me so sad! I unfollowed a bunch of people on Instagram recently so that the feeds I actually cared about and wanted to see would appear in my feed again and … lo and behold, it worked.

    • GOOD! Don’t be sad about your blog and instagram, they are both bloody brilliant! 😀 xxx

  • Ummm Alice, I dont think your blog posts have been appearing in my Bloglovin feed (I haven’t seen one on there in so long, I thought you were just busy with the house and maybe didnt have the time to blog too much at the moment!) and now I have so many to read and I am sorry for being a rubbish follower but also I’m quite pleased that I am going to be able to have a real binge on all of your posts that I have missed at once!

    Anyway, back to business, and the fact that I have read this finally now – I really applaud you for taking the time to reply to every comment, that’s something I always notice about a blogger too. I have a bit of a backlog at the moment but I’m determined to get up to date with my replies this weekend because I love the conversations they can start, and once I’ve done that I’m making it a bit of a mission to reply immediately if I can. It does take time, but I agree that it is so worthwhile…and more than that, it’s just really nice and makes you feel connected to people. My stats are often very low but I dont mind one bit because the people who comment are always SO lovely and interesting, which is far preferable to loads of page views and a solitary ‘great post, check out mine?’ xxx

    • I totally agree! One thing I’ve noticed about your blog is you get tonnes of comments and that’s brilliant! I would rather less people read what I wrote and had something to say than I had hundreds of thousands of views but nobody bothered commenting! I’ve made some amazing online friends (some of whom have now wonderfully become in person friends too) and I think that only really happens when you strike up conversations with each other! xxxx

      P.S weird about the Bloglovin’ thing? I have no idea why, but I also don’t know how to check why it’s happened? I haven’t blogged as much as I’d have liked recently, but I’m still trying to get bits and bobs uploaded when I can find a few spare hours here and there…!!

      • Definitely – hundreds of thousands of views and then blanket silence would kind of just make me feel nervous anyway I think, I’d be a bit disappointed that that many people had read what I’d written but no one had anything to say. And that’s so lovely, I would love to get some in person friendships going through the blog at some point!

        I have no idea how it could have happened or if it’s even possible – I mean I’ve been on it a bit less anyway as we’ve been moving and maybe its just been bad timing and they’ve just all piled up too fast in the gaps. No idea how, but I’m getting all caught up now :) xx

        • Have you managed to find any bloggers in your local area? We do a monthly brunch with local bloggers in Plymouth and it’s great for meeting like-minded people and chatting all things blog related! 😀 xxx

          • I have made one bloggy pal and we meet to catch up (and take photos of course) every few weeks which is really nice – it’s SO good to talk to someone who understands first hand some of the boring things I want to talk about which not everyone I know outside of blogging does! :) There are quite a few other Norwich bloggers that I know of, just haven’t been brave enough to suggest meeting properly yet eeeek! xxx

            • Ohh thats so good! now you’ve got one blogging friend, you can approach the others together and invite them for a brunch or an event! Wish I lived closer!! xxx