want to talk for a minute about posting comments on the blogs you follow. Do you take time to do this very important action? If you're like many, you follow a whole slew of blogs and you might not take time to read any of them. That was one of the basic reasons that the Authentic Blogger Facebook group was created - to form a community of bloggers who actually DO want to connect to one another in a sincere, authentic manner. The next logical part of that premise, beyond connecting and following other blogs is to read the content. Okay, yes, sometimes you can't read every single, individual blog post that pops up on your FB wall, or pops into your Inbox. I realize that the hours are filled with endless responsibilities for all of us and that it takes time and commitment to read more than a handful of various blog posts each day.
That being said, I still want to emphasize that just following and just reading isn't enough! For a blog author, and from my personal perspective, the most valuable aspect of the blogging world is getting feedback from my readers. Let me digress a moment and say that there are some nifty tracking websites out there that you can sign up for free service to give you daily and weekly reports on the traffic your blog receives. The one that I use is called StatCounter.com. Take a moment to pull up their page, register and get this tool for your blog - it shows you, daily, how many hits you get on your blog, how many new, repeat and unique visitors you receive. It will give you charts and graphs to delight the heart of any analytical or graphic arts inclined blogger out there! There is even a navigation button to click on that produces a map of the world, with push pins indicating the location of each visitor to your site. Until I got this set up for my blog, I had no way of knowing if people ever visited unless they posted a comment. Now, I have StatCounter set up to send me a weekly report and it's a very valuable tool that I highly recommend.
Important plug for Authentic Blogger (AB) group on Facebook - until Marty and I created AB, I was building a slow, steady following of my personal blog, Healing Morning. That is the way I prefer it, as it indicates people following (I hope!) who truly enjoy my posts. My StatCounter weekly reports, however, exploded exponentially with this first week of AB being live on Facebook - this means that the AB group is succeeding in its mission goal, to provide exposure to all the talented blog authors out there!
That being said...let's get back to posting comments. Feedback matters, people! You, as a blog author author, know the devotion, care, time and effort that you put into each of your blog posts. I'm sure that you're pleased and gratified when someone takes a minute to post a comment about a given blog entry of yours, right? I would also be willing to bet that you look forward to those comments and hope for more of the same with each new entry posted. Why then, would you deny another blog author that same simple courtesy? It takes mere minutes to scroll down to the bottom of their blog post, click on Post Comments and write something genuine and thoughtful. I realize that there are trials and tribulations with Posting Comments for us all - I have days that it seems every blog I attempt to post a comment on is holding a personal grudge against me and refuses to accept my comment. I don't claim to have IT answers for why it is sometimes difficult or impossible to get your comment to successfully post. I know it's aggravating and annoying, but you CAN keep trying.
I find that with my own attempts, and my blog is with Blogspot, sometimes I have to click as many as three times on Post Comment for it to succeed. It will tell me my attempt was not successful, please try another time. I ignore that and click on Post Comment again, and again, and usually by the third click, it works and attaches my Healing Morning blog stamp to the comment. Other times, it will be really aggravating and "poof" my comment out of existence. I've learned to take the precaution of copying my comment prior to clicking to post so that if it poofs, I can go back in and try one more time.
My point here is that Posting Comments is a vital, important part of the blogging process. It gives us all important feedback. It lets us know that yes, we were successful in communicating our message and thought, or it lets us know that no, we weren't quite on the mark as sharply as we had intended. Comments are the only way we're going to know these things, and they help us all to grow as writers, hone our skills and stretch our personal boundaries and horizons. Plus, let's all be honest, it is just plain fun to know people liked your blog post enough to write a comment!!! It tickles that secret place inside that we have that really, truly wants recognition for our writing efforts.
So, in closing, I encourage you all to embrace the practice of always, 100% of the time, posting a comment when you read someone's blog. If you fail to post on their actual blog page after multiple tries, then go the next step of posting on their Facebook page where most of the time, you can access a link to their most recent blog post. It is a small action, but huge in the impact it plays out for the blog author.
Author, Healing Morning blog
Author, Authentic Blogger blog
Co-Creator, Authentic Blogger Group