Blogging differs from journaling in one very important way, an audience. Your audience aka readers form your blog community. Increasing our blog readership is very similar to increasing your social network or number of community members. Consider all the ways that you would try to increase your own personal network.
While some advice givers will tell you ways of changing your writing by having more voice or different topics you should write about, I believe there are ways of increasing readership that do not require you to change your writing style and topic choices. Many bloggers discuss these 3 basic ways of increasing readership.
1. Model the Reader You Want. If you want readers, than you too must be a reader. If you want more commenters, than you too must be a commenter. Consider the number of blogs that you read frequently and comment on regularly? The average blogger has as many readers as the number of blogs they activity participate on. Consider being an active member of the blogging community.
2. Acknowledgement. When your reader takes the time to comment on your blog, make sure you show your appreciation and acknowledge their comment. When you walk down the street and smile at the person walking towards you, how does it feel when the person doesn’t even look up to acknowledge you? When readers take the time to comment on your blog, it is nice to acknowledge receipt of the comment. As a writer, it is sometimes awkward when the commenter isn’t necessarily asking for a response. However, acknowledgement is always nice.
3. Reciprocity. Readers take the time to come to your blog, read your content, and sometimes to post responses. When a commenter identifies their blog, it is nice to return the favor. Just as you are interested in increasing your readership, other bloggers are likely looking to do the same thing. Return the kind deed by visiting and commenting on their blog.
Bonus: Try guest blogging. Check out my offer to guest blog.