Every blogger would love to wake up on Christmas morning to find a few gifts under their tree. Whether you go with Word Press, Typepad, or something in between, this holiday might provide an opportunity to reflect on what’s really important to your blog.
Whether you blog for financial reasons or just for fun, everyone wants one thing out of their work- more! We all want more success, notoriety, and a following that tunes out the competition and zeroes in on you and your message.
Two things are important to remember in generating your wishlist: results that depend on you and those that rely on readership and other blogs. This is an important distinction to make because some writers get in the habit of blaming external forces for getting in the way of their success (”that darn Technorati ranking is holding me back!”). At the end of the day, blogging depends on persistence, creativity, focus and a good set of habits to generate content.
Here are some items to include on your holiday wishlist:
10 reliable guest posters
A solid guest post is like gold as it connects her/his constituency with your own, adding up to a whole lot of folks who will want to read your blog. Guest posters are trusted allies that can help you in a pinch when your creativity dries up or provide needed resources when you most need it. A guest poster can also lend a new perspective that might broaden the readership of your blog. I have come to rely on HD Biz Blog’s Stephen Smith as a good source of tech-related content and Lisa Hendey (Productivity at Home) as a source for family-related posts.
20 comments per day
Many of us post comments as a way to increase our own presence in the blogosphere but honest and reasonable comenters are important for us as well. Good comments give us energy and momentum. A genuine comment is helpful to let you know that “you’re not alone” and that someone is indeed listening. To get 20 quality comments per day…not a bad holiday gift for the new year!
30% jump in Technorati authority rating
Yes, this is an ambitious gift item and you might fall short but any jump in Technorati ranking is a good thing. All bloggers ought to desire a “Top 100″ ranking, something which has become the crown jewel of blogging life. While the Technorati gods do not always smile when they ought to due to an occasional case of getting stuck, it’s still a valuable piece of feedback.
40 daily followers of your Tumblr log
Tumblr is one of the best kept secrets that more bloggers should use. It gives the blogger a chance to tag items of interest and further his/her own professional development. It also gives readership a window into what you’re thinking about and interested in. To gain 40 quality readers each day is to increase investment in your mission. As an example, if your work focuses on Mac-related technology, a Tumblr log might give you a way to keep your blog free of “too many links” and at the same time, show your readers what you’re looking keeping tabs on. I like how Leo Babauta from Zen Habits has listed his Tumblr log in the links section of his site. Simple, clean and effective.
50% traffic increase
While this won’t happen overnight, a steady diet of posting and networking might indeed produce a 50% increase in traffic. This is rarely possible if all that you do is provide content but there are other things that you can do. Providing guest posts on other blogs, using print media, and generating e-books are all ways that generate traffic.
100 daily Adsense clicks that produce income
Too many small blogs use Adsense in vain. Without some serious traffic, ad clicks can be a very, very slow path to income. On the other hand, the marriage of well-placed ads and an increase in traffic can add up to some serious dough. Many people find that experimenting with ad placement and design style are the best strategies for generating income.
1000 new RSS subscribers each week
What blogger wouldn’t want a readership that increases visibly each week? With explosive growth comes the responsibility of providing top-flight content and the privilege of facilitating a community of readers. Using forums, polls and prizes all provide results but there is no substitute for a genuinely fresh and authoritative blogger. In a culture that values expertise, an excellent blogger becomes a voice for the people.