One of the Best Ways to Build Our Social Media Platform–Be a Blogger Booster

Historically, novelists have endured a mind-numbing failure rate. Social media has, for the first time in writer history, given us a break in the clouds. We now have a way of building a platform and increasing word of mouth by forging relationships, etc, etc. Yeah, you guys hear me preach this every week and I am happy you are still here, because this can get very overwhelming.

I happen to be a HUGE proponent of writers having a blog.  But today we aren’t going to talk about writing blogs. I am going to give you guys the next best thing. Be a Blogger Booster. Maybe you don’t feel comfortable blogging just yet or feel you don’t have the time. Okay. Fair enough. But I am going to give you an activity today that will increase your social media influence exponentially.

Three Ways to be a Blogger Booster

1-Comment on Blogs

Really. That’s all. Ideally, comment on blogs with large followings. Many people go to the more popular blogs for more than the posted content. Hey, check out my comments section. Sometimes I think my posts are just an excuse for all of you to have a party, and often you guys are WAY more interesting.

It’s like really wonderful, perfect cake. Yeah, we are there for the moist chocolate goodness, but the icing is just as important…if not the best part.

If you run across blogs that have a healthy comments section, that is a clue that this is an established and even growing community. Commenters befriend each other and hang out. I know because I have met many friends this way. They were regular at commenting on my blog (or other fave blogs where I was the commenter) and I went to their blog and on and on.

In fact, it is very common to see the same people congregating on each other’s blogs. It is a huge…are you ready for this? NETWORK.

Even if you don’t have time to blog, at least take time to read blogs and leave thoughtful comments. People will see you are vested and have something worthwhile to say. They will get to know you and hopefully like and support you, especially if you have a presence on Twitter.

I see it happen all the time. This blog has been responsible for more friendships than I can count and that is AWESOME. It is just proof that the best bloggers are just great community-builders.

Ouch! I got a cramp patting myself on the back!😀

2-Literally, Comment ON the Blogs

No, I am not repeating myself. I have a lot of people who tell me they loved a post, but they tell me on Twitter or Facebook. Hey, I am all for getting compliments. It mitigates the feelings of gross inferiority I feel every day when I realize I have chosen to be a professional writer who must always be entertaining, like forever…

I digress.

I love the comments; all bloggers do. The problem is that when you comment on Facebook or Twitter? It is fleeting. My Twitter feed will scroll out in a couple of hours. Facebook? You could comment, but it is good for maybe a day.

BUT…

Comment ON the physical blog and your comment is there indefinitely. I regularly repost links on Twitter to older posts. Like, say a writer is really having a hard time with POV, I will send out the link. Everyone who reads that post also sees the COMMENTS.

I have blogs I posted six months ago that get more hits than the new blog posted that week. That means new people are SEEING those comments *wink, wink, nod, nod*

So if you want to comment, and you want that comment to have some social media impact for YOU, make sure that comment is in the comments section of the actual blog. If you really want bloggers to love you, then feel free to put the comment in both places. Just copy and paste.

3—Do a Mash-Up

Make a list of all these blogs you visit every week and that is your blog. If we do nothing else, we can do a mash-up. What is a mash-up? A mash-up is just a list of blogs you’ve read in the past week (and ideally, commented on) that you feel are worthy of making that special list. If you get good at collecting quality blogs, people will subscribe to your feed just because you give them great links.

Oh, and us bloggers? We will LOVE you.

So what does being a Blogger Booster Do?

It Creates Community

Bloggers will know you, recognize you and, if you support us enough, we will LIKE you…a lot.

When I was at RT, one of the PR experts recommended that an author with a book about to be released needed to sit down and e-mail as many bloggers as possible and see if they would do a review.

Um…no.

In fact, I raised my hand on that one. There are few things that will annoy bloggers more than unsolicited spam asking for us to put out effort for someone we don’t know from a hole in the ground.

Yeah, sure. I will read your indie published 110,000 word high fantasy in my infinite free time, and write a favorable review, even though I have never talked to you or so much as seen a “Great blog” from you in my comments section. Yeah…I am right on that, right after I organize my sock drawer and paint my toenails with glittery unicorns.

Bloggers are always looking for stuff to talk about. Many will even do reviews. I do them on rare occasions, but not for random people who e-mail me a form letter.

One of the best ways to get on a blogger’s good side is to regularly comment on her blog and even repost on Twitter and Facebook. We totally dig being included in a mash-up.

If you do all these things then, LATER, when you are staring down the barrel of needing good reviews? It will feel a heck of a lot less weird asking for a favor. A blogger, particularly a book blogger, will be far more inclined to help you out if you have been giving in the relationship for a while.

My new book actually has a blurb from Nationally Best-Selling Author James Scott Bell, BUT I had mentioned how awesome he was in a number of blogs and had promoted Jim’s books many, many times…and then told him on Twitter. When it came time to ask for a blurb, I can attest that it was terrifying…but it was easier because I had actively been giving for a long time before I did any asking.

Commenting on blogs can do the same. It can build rapport with key influencers with large followings, and it only takes a few minutes a day. Maybe you don’t have time to blog, but you can make time to comment and even do a mash-up. Just those two activities can plug you into communities that number in the tens of thousands.

What are some other ways you guys can think of to be a blogger booster? Do some of you blog and have a cool reader story you would love to share? What are some of your favorite types of blogs? Why do you like them? What makes you guys subscribe to a blog?

Some important announcements below the contest information.

I love hearing from you! And to prove it and show my love, for the month of April, everyone who leaves a comment I will put your name in a hat. If you comment and link back to my blog on your blog, you get your name in the hat twice. If you leave a comment, and link back to my blog, and mention my book We Are Not Alone in your blog…you get your name in the hat THREE times. What do you win? The unvarnished truth from yours truly.

I will pick a winner every week for a critique of your first five pages. At the end of April I will pick a winner for the grand prize. A free critique from me on the first 15 pages of your novel. Good luck!

Note: I am keeping all the names for a final GRAND, GRAND PRIZE of 30 Pages (To be announced) OR a blog diagnostic. I look at your blog and give feedback to improve it. For now, I will draw weekly for 5 page edit, monthly for 15 page edit.

Important Announcements

May 9-13, 2011, I will be teaching an on-line Building Your Author Brand with Social Media Class for only $15 to support the wonderful Long Island Romance Writers.

I will also be teaching TWO social media classes at the Books ‘n Authors and All that Jazz Conference this Saturday at Weatherford College in Weatherford, TX. The conference is FREE.

My new book, “Are You There, Blog? It’s Me, Writer” will be out in less than a month!

No Mash-Up of Awesomeness today. Been sick with a cold, so wasn’t on-line to gather blogs.

Until next time….

In the meantime, if you don’t already own a copy, my best-selling book We Are Not Alone–The Writers Guide to Social Media is recommended by literary agents and endorsed by NY Times best-selling authors. My method is free, fast, simple and leaves time to write more books.

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  1. #1 by Manon Eileen on April 27, 2011 - 1:13 pm

    *leaves a comment, dutifully*

    Another great post, Kristen, thank you😀

    • #2 by Author Kristen Lamb on April 27, 2011 - 1:16 pm

      LOL…you caught me. I just wanted more comments on my blog😛.

  2. #3 by Aden on April 27, 2011 - 1:16 pm

    Great blog! (*snort* sorry could not resist)

    But seriously, this was a great reminder to me that I need to be better about commenting on blogs. I have a small group that I read everyday, and it is sad how little I comment on them. So I am going to make it my mission to work on being a Blogger Booster.

    Also, I now have the urge to pain my toenails with glittery unicorns.

  3. #4 by Billie Jo Woods on April 27, 2011 - 1:23 pm

    I would love to see the people who read my blog make a comment on it. I know there are way more people reading it than commenting on it just from my stats but have no idea what they are thinking about it. I often comment on blogs I like or at least click the ‘like’ button but admit I should probably do more of it myself. Thanks again for another great post!

  4. #5 by christopherdavidpetersen on April 27, 2011 - 1:27 pm

    This is such great advice! I bought your book “We are not alone” and am following it letter by letter. I’m seeing great result with sales and am having a lot of fun while doing it too (I’m a huge introvert, so your ideas help bring me out of my shell – thanks on that part too).
    http://amzn.to/dPCtSW

    Keep posting… you have such valuable advice.

    Christopher David Petersen
    http://bit.ly/hPqLXY

  5. #6 by Anne-Mhairi Simpson on April 27, 2011 - 1:27 pm

    I’m totally confused – I can’t see any comments for this post… That’s so bizarre!!

    Anyway, I agree with you and I think you’re awesome, but of course you already knew that. I can personally attest to the great feeling you get when people comment. People have started discussing the pros and cons of the various options available for my fantasy serial and it’s great. Like you say, I think (although I hardly dare do so) that I might have a very small community just budding away on my blog. What a fantastic feeling!

    I haven’t done the mash-up yet and while I do comment on other people’s blogs, I think I need to kind of schedule that in, rather than just going to whatever flies past in my Twitter feed.

    Time to get more organised about the whole thing. Thank you!

    PS. Sometimes people ask for guest bloggers, which is handy if you don’t have a blog of your own. You can just guest on someone else’s. You have to be careful with this, though – you want to make sure you’re guesting on the right blog, not just anyone who will take you. If you want to build your brand as writing in a particular genre, it’s good to keep somewhere around that (a writer of cozy mysteries might not get far on a horror writer’s blog). Equally, you want to make sure that your views aren’t going to clash horribly with that blog’s general attitude and that of its readers.

    • #7 by Irene Vernardis on April 27, 2011 - 1:29 pm

      You didn’t see any comment on this blog, because all of us were posting at the same time LOL.

  6. #8 by Irene Vernardis on April 27, 2011 - 1:27 pm

    It seems that’s all I do in the last week or more, comment on blogs and again comment on blogs and…and not having written anything on my blog.

    So I feel a strong urge to comment here too, since I’m on it and you seem to like it😀

    But it’s not my fault. No, really, it’s not. People should stop tweeting links to interesting or funny articles. It’s too tempting. My finger twitches all the time on the left click button and lately I’ve observed that it is slightly curved downward. Definitely not my fault.

    Ok. All parties involved are happy now, I suppose. LOL. Thank you for the interesting post🙂

    • #9 by Author Kristen Lamb on April 27, 2011 - 1:32 pm

      Well, a lot of times, you guys think you are goofing off when you are taking time to read and comment on blogs. Actually, it is a really excellent way to network and build your platform. So long as you get back to your own WIP, this is actually good time spent. Thanks for taking the time to comment. I always love hearing from you guys.

  7. #10 by Anne-Mhairi Simpson on April 27, 2011 - 1:28 pm

    Ah, now I see the comments. Looks like the blog hides them until I’ve commented, just to make me feel a bit more special😀

  8. #11 by Suzan on April 27, 2011 - 1:30 pm

    I am the worst about commenting on blog posts. I won’t lie. It’s my introverted nature that screams, “No! Don’t do it! Don’t be SOCIAL!” But I tie her up and lock her in the basement and do it anyway. I’m getting better at it, but I still need work.

    Re: Mashups. I might get a little giggly when I see the incoming links on my Dashboard. Especially when it’s someone who I admire and didn’t expect to read my blog because we’re SOOO not on the same level.

    • #12 by Marilag Lubag on April 28, 2011 - 5:35 am

      Yup! It always makes me blush and jump up and down, too.🙂

  9. #13 by Marcia on April 27, 2011 - 1:33 pm

    Kristen, I blogged for years under a different name and never grew my readership. Didn’t know how and apparently didn’t look hard enough for answers. I’ve been blogging under my current name a short time and am beginning to see the fruits of my labor already. Social media sites, as you’ve recommended, really are the fuel for getting your blog to take-off! Your tips here seem so simple, but are power-packed. I do comment nearly every time I read a blog…and not just a ‘thank you for a great post’. With your ideas in hand, I can be a better Blogger Booster. Thanks.

  10. #14 by Saffina Desforges on April 27, 2011 - 1:36 pm

    Once again, great advice Kristen. It is very easy to dip in and out every day (hands up!) and read some great blogs, but not comment. I consider myself reprimanded. Love it, as usual!

    Saffi

  11. #15 by hawleywood40 on April 27, 2011 - 1:42 pm

    Funny thing. One of my “criteria” for whether or not I actually subscribe to a blog is whether the posts I have read made me want to leave a comment beyond ‘great.’ If the blogger got me thinking enough to have something to say, I want to come back. Right now, I’m trying to use blogging to build a writing-related network, so I look for the blogs of other struggling or successful writers, editors, etc. But if I stumble across a non-writing blog along the way that makes me laugh or think enough to leave a comment, then I want to follow that one too : ).

  12. #16 by Peter Saint-Clair on April 27, 2011 - 1:53 pm

    I’ve been getting better at actually commenting on blogs and am finally getting in the habit of doing Mash-ups. Thanks for the advice, Kristen!

  13. #17 by jabelfield on April 27, 2011 - 1:55 pm

    I stumbled across your blog a few weeks back–might have been through a tweet of someone’s to one of your posts. I liked what you had to say enough to subscibe, because you’re giving out exactly the kind of advice I’m currently looking for.
    What do I look for in a blog post? If it’s from somebody I know personally, I will read just about anything. Otherwise, it has to be something relevant to me at the time. I love announcements for book releases, for advice of writing/publishing, etc. And I have commented on quite a few. I never even occurred to me that I could potentially garnering interest whilst doing so.🙂

  14. #18 by Kait Nolan on April 27, 2011 - 1:56 pm

    I friggin LOVE mashups! One of the things I eliminated to give myself some more time was my ridiculous long list of RSS blog subscriptions. Now I have about 4 or 5 I subscribe to by email and the rest of my reading comes from recs on Twitter or mashups mentioned ON those 4 or 5 blogs I get via email.

    And obviously I could be a poster child for the benefits of commenting on blogs since my comments on yours are what made my agent come find me and say “I want you!”

  15. #19 by Stacy on April 27, 2011 - 1:59 pm

    Great post. I have been learning this in the past few weeks. My blog is still in its infancy stage, but I’ve noticed a big increase in Twitter followers as I post more on blogs.

    And mashups are a great idea for a blogger to gain more followers. Thanks!

  16. #20 by Ann on April 27, 2011 - 2:14 pm

    I don’t have a blog- yet, but this is really great advice! I will start posting more comments. I don’t follow very many blogs, I just don’t have time, but I’m going to comment on the ones I do follow.
    Also I got an email about the Finding your Brand class and keeping going back and checking it out. Now that I know it’s you teaching it I’ll have to sign-up!

  17. #21 by Diane Henders on April 27, 2011 - 2:42 pm

    Thanks for another helpful post, Kristen! I subscribe to blogs because they either inform me or entertain me. If they do both, I’ll love them forever.

    I also (usually) subscribe to the blogs of people who comment on my blog. As you said, if someone supports me, I like to do the same for them.

  18. #22 by Kathy Garuti on April 27, 2011 - 2:45 pm

    Hi Kristen,

    Some really good and interesting information here. I took it to heart and went back an posted my tweet yesterday to yesterdays blog.

  19. #23 by Cathy Neumueller on April 27, 2011 - 2:55 pm

    Kristen, this is one of my “must read” blogs. Always great information. Your book is on the very top of my massive TBR pile. I don’t have a blog yet but its on my to do list.

    Cathy

  20. #24 by Bob Mayer on April 27, 2011 - 3:00 pm

    I do think commenting on blogs is very worthwhile. I ended up with a guest blog on J.A. Konrath’s Newbies Guide to Publishing because of a comment. People who post blogs tend to read their comments and reply to them and it’s a good way to make a connection.

  21. #25 by Erin Brambilla on April 27, 2011 - 3:13 pm

    Great information again, Kristen. I am learning so much from you! I also love that you’ve justified my addiction to reading blogs and social media (kidding🙂 ). Really though, I’m a newbie and I appreciate all of the guidance. You’ve helped me form some connections to other writers. It’s exciting for me to see new Twitter followers or new blog subscribers. What a great way to form a network.

  22. #26 by Jean on April 27, 2011 - 3:30 pm

    *raises hand* Guilty! I read quite a few blogs on a regular basis and seldom comment on them. I’ll do better though.

  23. #27 by Jessica on April 27, 2011 - 3:35 pm

    Numbers 1 and 2 are a challenge for me. My feed reader is so convenient! I can read posts there! Commenting on a blog post means (gasp, shock) clicking outside of the reader and traveling to the actual page. It’s an awful lot of effort.😉

    I understand the principle of it, though, and I know–even if I don’t always act on that knowledge–that commenting on various blogs, like this one, plug me into a wider community. Community is, after all, how I’ve made so many wonderful friends online.

    Thanks for indirectly calling me out on my commenting laziness. :p

  24. #28 by Erik Setterlind on April 27, 2011 - 3:45 pm

    I try to be funny when commenting on blogs. But now isn’t one of those times. Well, it might be now. Anyway, I try to let my personality come through on my comments, and that helps attract followers. Also, I like commenting on newer blogs that may not have that much of following yet b/c I know how it good it feels to have your blog acknowledged by someone.

    • #29 by Author Kristen Lamb on April 27, 2011 - 3:52 pm

      That is a great habit, and it means a lot to newbie bloggers. Heck, that one comment might just be the lifeline that keeps us from giving up! Go you!😀.

  25. #30 by Terrell Mims on April 27, 2011 - 3:59 pm

    Great post. We, writers, are so busy trying to push out our masterpieces, but not taking the time to help others push out theirs.😉 Great post. I, honestly, need to read more blogs in order to do a mash up. If not, every week will be a promo spot for the WWBC crew…which I don’t mind.

  26. #31 by educlaytion on April 27, 2011 - 4:02 pm

    Comments are king. I’ve been getting asked a lot about how to grow a blog. If only it were as easy as a Chia Pet. But if you add water to your blog it’ll probably fry your computer.

    Readers should comment and bloggers should encourage discussion. I have discovered many people by reading comments they left somewhere, even if it was months past the day they wrote something.

    The idea of blog boosting is so key. Tell others about the good stuff you find and watch how quick you connect with others.

    • #32 by K.B. Owen on April 27, 2011 - 5:58 pm

      Chia Pet – LOL, Clay! I sure wish it was that easy. The progress on my blog is glacial, and lately I’ve been screening a lot of male enhancement products left as comments on my blog (Can someone PLEASE tell me why a post about Sherlock Holmes brings out these weirdos??).

      Maybe I’d get more traffic if I left the male enhancement product comments in, haha.

      • #33 by Jenny Hansen on April 27, 2011 - 7:00 pm

        K.B.

        I totally dig your blog…will work on pushing more traffic, both to you and that funny Chia Pet Owner, Clay.🙂

        I am just finishing up with Kristen’s class and think EVERYONE should take it. So, so, so helpful. (As is this post!) Thanks!

  27. #34 by Christine Ashworth on April 27, 2011 - 4:30 pm

    I love blog boosting, too. But sometimes I have difficulty saying something interesting in the post – and I hate just saying “great blog!” even though that’s really what I feel. It’s discouraging sometimes to work at being a part of the conversation, but feeling like I have nothing to say. Do you know what I mean?

    • #35 by Author Kristen Lamb on April 27, 2011 - 4:49 pm

      Yes, and that is why, when I teach blogging, I advise the blogger to ask a series of questions at the end to serve essentially as writing prompts to make commenting easier. The blogger can do a lot to free up the stuff tucked in the reader’s gray matter🙂.

  28. #36 by comingeast on April 27, 2011 - 4:37 pm

    Some great ideas I intend taking to heart. Even though I’ve been blogging for 9 months, I feel I’m still new at it, so your helpful advice is useful. I also bought your book, We Are Not Alone, and am looking forward to reading it. I’m not sure how to link to your blog from my blog or from comments, but you are on my blogroll. Does that count for anything?

  29. #37 by Anne R. Allen on April 27, 2011 - 4:42 pm

    This is such an important post! At least 50% of blogging is visiting other people’s blogs. As the great blog god Nathan Bransford hath taught us: “SOCIAL MEDIA IS SOCIAL.”

    The best blogs, like Nathan’s and this one, encourage socializing in the comments. When I see a thought-provoking comment, I go look at that person’s blog–and we both extend out network.

    You’re so right about emails from non-followers. I don’t care who you are: that’s spam. But I recently have had emails from several authors who are promoting books who said stuff like “I loved the conversation on your blog about “X” Did you see my comment? Can I write a guest post?” You betcha!

    • #38 by Christi Craig on April 27, 2011 - 9:09 pm

      Kristen, Great post.
      Anne, great point.

      My problem is that I spend too much time composing comments.

      …Like now. I’ve been watching the cursor for two minutes…

      Geez.

  30. #39 by Darla on April 27, 2011 - 5:15 pm

    Hey Kristen,

    Great Info and Insight as usual. So true, been sending alot of writers your way – letting them know about your blog. Look forward to seeing you in Weatherford on Sat.I’ll be there and have also spread the word about your classes. Alot of interest, you should have a full house🙂

  31. #40 by amyshojai on April 27, 2011 - 5:38 pm

    The Weatherford conference rocks! Can’t make it this year but attended 2-3 years in a row a few back. Enjoy! And Kristen, THANKS for the shout-outs re: my blog on Monday–garnered a to-date highest view rate ever. *s* Had to be you…or maybe the possum analysis. Exactly the same only different . . . *eg* Glad you’re feeling better.

    • #41 by Jenny Hansen on April 27, 2011 - 7:03 pm

      Hi Amy!

      I’ve been so impressed by you this week! Awesome post after awesome post. Now, after reading this great Kristen blog (and hanging my head because I’ve not been commenting on your awesome posts) I’ll be getting on that.

      I asked a friend about your HTML question but SHE’S sick so I’ve not gotten an answer.

      Hope you’re feeling better, Kristen!

  32. #42 by Catherine Johnson on April 27, 2011 - 5:53 pm

    I used to do a round up of awesome blog posts with useful info I’d seen that week, but since joining a RachWrites Writer’s Crusade I decided to promote a few of the writers from there each week instead. So I’m going from bringing cool info to my best writing buddies to encouraging networking between a large writing community. I told them I’d tweet the cool links instead. I shouted out to you and Anna Hoffman on Twitter when in the past you would have gone straight into my Friday post. You have a good point about the twitter stream fading away. I could put you on the blog aswell, but here’s the other thing. I have far fewer blog followers than twitter followers so promoting you two to more people could be better than having you forever on my blog with not much traffic. Agree? The writers however all call around at some point and will gradually build up their community if they want to by checking out the shout outs. I have definitely clicked through when other writers do shout outs. (Boy this is the longest comment I’ve ever made on a blog!)

  33. #43 by Sarah Forgrave on April 27, 2011 - 5:55 pm

    Great post, Kristen! (and no, I’m not just saying that out of duty)🙂 I often pop in here and read your posts, but can always do better about commenting. How about this? I’ll double the fun and go Tweet this right now?🙂

  34. #44 by Catherine Johnson on April 27, 2011 - 5:56 pm

    One more thing🙂 the crusade has had a few burn outs recently with it being all too much to get round quite so many blogs all the time. Some people think you have to see every last post, but with a wider network you’d literally get nothing else done all day.

  35. #45 by Tony Hastings on April 27, 2011 - 5:59 pm

    Hi Kristen, it’s been a little while since I passed this way but I see the excellent quality of your posts has not diminished🙂

    You are so right about commenting as being a great way to connect with other bloggers and to build community. I think it’s so important to try to comment on different blogs too, it’s too easy to get into the habit of commenting only on the ones you know. We need to step outside of our comfort zone from time to time to make those new connections.

    The host blogger has a responsibility too I think to reply to comments, it’s only a common courtesy but it does have the added bonus of building up your comment stats!

    Recognising the importance of becoming a more active commenter I resolved at the start of the year to add at least 2 meaningful comments a day, I have failed pretty miserably so far so thank you for motivating me and at least allowing me to hit 50% of target today.

    Thanks for an interesting article Kristen, I will not be such a stranger from now on🙂

    Tony

    • #46 by Author Kristen Lamb on April 27, 2011 - 6:02 pm

      Has been a while since I’ve seen you. It is funny how we bloggers get so spoiled seeing you guys and we DO miss you when we don’t hear from you. But, you are right. Gotta share the love. That is why I try to post a mash-up.

  36. #47 by Les Howard on April 27, 2011 - 6:40 pm

    Whenever I read a blog post, I hit the Like button (unless I absolutely didn’t like it, of course). If I have something to add, then I post a comment.

    I’ve seen at least 2 bloggers who seem to visit every post on Freshly Pressed and leave the same “I loved your post” comment on every one. Did they even bother to read it? I’m still undecided about this practise. While it does increase the traffic numbers to the blog, it doesn’t add any value for anyone other than the commenter whose links are everywhere there is likely to be significant traffic. It’s made me much less likely to visit those 2 blogs.

    Captcha codes are a pain. They make it harder to comment. Unless there is a real problem, why use them? I had a comment deleted when I got the code wrong. I didn’t bother to retype it.

    Also, some authors like to approve comments. Why bother? You can always delete inappropriate comments.

    Some bloggers give an RSS subscrption feed without also giving the option of an email subscription. I prefer email and don’t use RSS.

    • #48 by Jessica on April 27, 2011 - 6:47 pm

      Les – I completely agree with you on the Captcha codes. I find them to be a deterrent to commenting. They, in combination with OpenID not working, are the cause of many lost comments for me. If I have to jump through hoops to comment it’s not worth it and I leave–and occasionally my subscription leaves with me. (Though usually I’ll contact the blogger about the difficulty with commenting before I take my ball and go home.)

  37. #49 by Raven Corinn Carluk on April 27, 2011 - 6:47 pm

    The “marketer” for my small press publisher recommended that when I approached a site/blog for review, that I include something nice about their site in my query letter. “Oh, I really like your layout. Will you please read my book?”

    I’ve learned a lot more here, and it’s all solid advice that actually feels right.

    • #50 by Author Kristen Lamb on April 27, 2011 - 6:51 pm

      Yeah, marketers give a lot of advice that will get you guys in trouble, LOL. That tactic affects me like the person who compliments my outfit, then 30 seconds after I beam a smile and thank them…they ask me if want to buy some vitamins. It is phony and people can smell it from a mile away.

      Just read blogs and comment and then when it comes time, we will remember you as a peep, and we generally support our peeps.

  38. #51 by Mary Ann Peden-Coviello on April 27, 2011 - 6:51 pm

    This is rapidly becoming one of my “must-read-daily” blogs! I am a new blogger, well as far as trying to get a professional-type presence goes anyway. So I have an eensy tiny blog but it’s going to have a Fabulous Friday Mashup starting this Friday.

  39. #52 by Beth on April 27, 2011 - 6:54 pm

    I’m leaving a comment, but as of yet I am not a published author. I would really love to write a book someday, and to be honest I have written several… although I’m not sure that will ever go anywhere.
    Anyway, this comment is mostly just to thank you for your continued insight into blogging and giving me that awesome reminder that I should take time to comment on other’s blogs.
    Thanks!

    • #53 by Author Kristen Lamb on April 27, 2011 - 7:44 pm

      Awww…thank you! Well, hopefully these posts will help you be far better prepared😀.

  40. #54 by writerwellness on April 27, 2011 - 6:58 pm

    Thanks for the mash-up blog reminder. With that in mind, there is never nothing (like that? never nothing) to blog about.

  41. #55 by Donna on April 27, 2011 - 7:05 pm

    Hey Kristen. I really need to sort out my time management. You have me doing so much work…..:p

    I will comment on more blogs and make a better effort at writing them too. I need a clone!!! Hang on, I distinctly remember you saying you were my clone. Excellent – job done. You can write my blogs too from now on😀

    Another great blog, although everytime I read your blogs, I end up with more work to do.

  42. #56 by Leigh D'Ansey on April 27, 2011 - 7:13 pm

    Well, that’s a relief – to know I’m actually working when I’m cruising the blogosphere and commenting. I just love blogs. I’ve only discovered yours quite recently, Kristen, but I’ve learned so much in that short time. I bought ‘We Are Not Alone’ and the social media threads really started coming together for me – everything started to make sense! Thank you.

  43. #57 by Tamara LeBlanc on April 27, 2011 - 7:42 pm

    Just what I needed to hear!I’ve mentioned before that I’m not really up for offering a blog of my very own, but I’m a loyal commentor, so maybe I’m doing my social networking blogerific part after all:)
    Yet more wonderful info from one of my favorite blogs!!!
    Have a great afternoon!!!
    Tamara

  44. #58 by Piper Bayard on April 27, 2011 - 8:09 pm

    Great post, Kristen. I know sometimes I see lots of comments on blogs and think mine won’t matter. Thanks for reminding me that it does.

  45. #59 by Ashley Graham on April 27, 2011 - 8:18 pm

    I agree. Commenting on blogs is always better than telling them you loved their post via a tweet. Also, I love doing mash-ups, but I’m never sure how to label it on my blog since I find most posts through links given through tweets. Top tweets of the week? Top blog tweets of the week? Top bleets? Top twogs? LOL. I like the sound of mash-up, but everyone does it so I feel I’m copying or something, but in the end, I may just end up calling it that and sticking to it. I need to stick to something. Thanks for this post! Informative and helpful, as usual!

  46. #60 by marykateleahy on April 27, 2011 - 8:40 pm

    Loved the idea of a mash-up, I’ll have to try that. I don’t think that being a blogger booster is anything new…your point about wanting favors for nothing was dead on, if you want people to be invested in your success you have to show that you are invested in theirs by commenting on their blog and promoting them. This is just the newest reiteration of that concept. Excellent post though🙂

  47. #61 by Sharon Hamilton on April 27, 2011 - 9:10 pm

    At least once a week I’m sharing your blog on my FB page. I try not to do it quite as often as I enjoy reading your posts, because I don’t want to wear out the KL Fan Club type look.

    I should be so lucky to have so many followers and commenters. So, if anyone is going to look over the 57 other responses to date, consider the fact that if you show up at my blog, I’ll have time to answer every one of them.

    If I find a post I really like or is well written, and this is a new author with 3-4 followers, I will stop by. I’m only a bit above that, anyway. I agree with blogging on big blogs, like this one. But I kinda like showering a little angel dust on someone who is just getting started, and getting that big cyber grin.

    Thanks for all you do, Kristin.

  48. #62 by DLFowler on April 27, 2011 - 9:36 pm

    You’re so full of good advice. Whenever I see your posts show up in my inbox I make time to read them. And today is no exception. You cut through the crap and focus on the things that work.

    Thanks

  49. #63 by Gene Lempp on April 27, 2011 - 10:24 pm

    I can give testimony to this entire post…thanks to Kristen I’ve gone from commenting to Twitter recently and just launched my blog today, strangely before reading this, lol. Finding Kristen led to a host of other fantastic bloggers, writers and above all people that I’m excited to know and get to talk with.

    Thanks Kristen, said this before, but must once more…You are the best🙂

    • #64 by Author Kristen Lamb on April 27, 2011 - 10:33 pm

      Ooooh, yeah I do kinda corner the market on the COOLEST PEEPS…EVER! And I will probably see them commenting over at your new blog too. That is SO awesome! And I see that you listened to me *noting name of your blog is not dumb newbie mistake like mine*😀.

      • #65 by Gene Lempp on April 27, 2011 - 11:09 pm

        Actually, I have to be honest, I changed it to my name after making the same mistake on my first attempt to blog a year ago, but that was before I found this site. Can’t tell you how much I’ve learned from you and how much I appreciate all the great advice I’ve garnered here on your site. Thanks🙂

        • #66 by Author Kristen Lamb on April 27, 2011 - 11:25 pm

          Hey, at least you learned. I have considered starting a Kristen Lamb blog, but why? I would have to transfer this following and truthfully, I think the warriorwriters in the URL keeps me humble. Reminds me I wasnlt always so smart, LOL😀.

          I am happy to have helped and look forward to being a part of your future success!

  50. #67 by Jim Devitt on April 27, 2011 - 10:50 pm

    Another great post, keep them coming!

  51. #68 by Athena Grayson on April 27, 2011 - 10:56 pm

    I didn’t realize I’d begun to do just this under my other name until months and months after I’d done so and started seeing a modest bump in book sales (and when I say modest, I mean modest), but I started to see a correlation with my blog participation and a slight growth in the numbers of people who knew I was alive.

    Now I’m starting to leave blog breadcrumbs (in the form of actually filling out the “website” field in the comment form), but I don’t think I’m as engaging in my blog as I am in my posts. In fact, on my blog, I kinda feel like my 6 year old daughter putting on her mother’s make up and shoes and pretending to be grown-up.

  52. #69 by andrewmocete on April 28, 2011 - 1:03 am

    Holy coincidence! TODAY is the first day I posted a mash-up and surprise, surprise, my readers enjoyed it.

    You’re so right about commenting ON the blog, but it works both ways. I’ve left comments on blogs only to later find out that the blogger just answered the Facebook or Twitter comments. So now just to keep up with discussion I have to be their FB and Twitter friend too? Whatchu talkin’ ’bout Willis? Guess how often I visit those blogs?

    • #70 by Author Kristen Lamb on April 28, 2011 - 1:20 am

      I try to reply to all I can. If you comment on the physical blog, it just has more impact because it remains when those Twitter feeds and FB statuses are long gone. Awesome on the mash-up😀.

      • #71 by andrewmocete on April 28, 2011 - 1:43 am

        Oh yeah, I know not every comment can or needs to be addressed. I guess that came out wrong. I was talking about a physical blog being totally ignored while the FB/Twitter was hopping with conversation.

        I think it’s important to let readers know their comments matter wherever they’re posted. Even if they can’t all be answered. Kind of off topic, but wanted to clarify.

  53. #72 by Patricia DeWit on April 28, 2011 - 1:30 am

    “It creates community.” And that’s really what this is all about. Thanks.
    The mashup! Yes…

  54. #73 by Natalie C. Markey on April 28, 2011 - 2:19 am

    As always this is spot on advice! Thank you so much for your common sense coverage!

    Natalie

  55. #74 by nataliefaybooks on April 28, 2011 - 2:22 am

    Yes! At least I do this one thing right! If I liked the post I never close the tab without leaving a comment.

    Thanks for another great post🙂

  56. #75 by Joanna Aislinn on April 28, 2011 - 3:16 am

    Wish I could get to all your awesome comments every post, Kristen. What awonderful community you’ve grown here. Never thought I’d love blogging as much as I do. Love comments and love the idea of spreading them on other exchange sites, no matter how short lived. It all counts right? And maybe I’ll add a mash-up at my blog; what a fun idea.🙂

    As always, thanks for awesomeness in every post!

  57. #76 by Maureen Crisp on April 28, 2011 - 3:21 am

    As usual a great post! LOL. I have been doing a mash up as my blog post for three years…I just never knew it was called a mash up.
    I confess to not commenting on as many blogs as I would like. Sometimes it is because I can add nothing new to the conversation. So I could say great blog post…but that seems like saying the obvious so I don’t comment….I will have to think of a pithy comment that means the same thing…
    maureen
    New Zealand

    PS I will confess to referring my readers over to your blog fairly often tho…

    • #77 by Les Howard on April 28, 2011 - 5:13 pm

      An easy way to do that is just click on the Like button. I don’t comment when someone else has already said the same thing; it just wastes everyone’s time.

  58. #78 by A.E. Tyree on April 28, 2011 - 4:50 am

    Wonderful post Kristen. And good advice. I’d been feeling like a slacker for not blogging yet, but I just haven’t found a topic/direction I feel I can write about. Getting my feet wet by commenting on the blogs I love is a great first step. You rock!

    Annaliese

  59. #79 by Persian Poetess on April 28, 2011 - 4:52 am

    I take a lot of poetry/writing courses at my college, so the compulsion to respond to a work is almost unavoidable! However that doesn’t mean I’ll respond to anything and everything on the interwebs…😛

    What does motivate me to comment on a blog is when the author not only opens a discourse to the general public but a discourse within myself. To have my stubborness in certain things shaken and my outlook on the subject set anew.

    Alright time to get off my soapbox now, and just boil down to how I felt about your post:

    COULDN’T have said it better myself :)!

    *kicks soapbox aside*

  60. #80 by Lani on April 28, 2011 - 5:18 am

    Another useful post – thank ou very much! I confess i didnt know what a Blog Mash-up was…and now I do. And maybe, just maybe i will be brave enough ( and techno clever enough) to try doing one!

    I always appreciate your helpful tips. Looking forward to more.

  61. #81 by Marilag Lubag on April 28, 2011 - 5:39 am

    I’ll try to spread the blog love on my FB, as well. Starting tomorrow.😉

    I can see your point about not wanting to review books from people you don’t know. Anyway, what if the bloggers are reviewing books for their blogs? Would it hurt if we tell them about our books even if we don’t know them?

  62. #82 by barb19 on April 28, 2011 - 10:23 am

    We all love to receive comments on our blog, so I always make sure I comment on my blogging buddies blogs in return; it builds a network of relationships – isn’t that what it’s all about – building relationships?
    Great post Kristen – as always!

  63. #83 by Brenda Wallace on April 28, 2011 - 1:31 pm

    You are so right. I have met some nice friends on blogs. I think many of us read blogs without leaving comments, but boosting is something I enjoy when I have a moment.

  64. #84 by Sandra Warren on April 28, 2011 - 2:06 pm

    Informative and funny at the same time. A real gift of (writer’s) gab! I love reading your posts. Laughing while you learn is the best!

  65. #85 by Christin Mowery on April 28, 2011 - 2:56 pm

    Kristen, this post is excellent. Thank you for pointing out that we are not really goofing off, but we are doing the things necessary to build our network/platform. It makes me feel much better. I love reading and commenting on people’s blogs…I know how much we all need the encouragement…so, I try to do it as often as possible.

    I would love to have people leave more comments on my blog. I agree that, while it is nice that people tell us they like our posts on Twitter and FB, it is better to have long-lasting comments posted directly to the blog. And, if you post your comments to all three? I’m your new best friend.

    I am going to purchase your book, because I can tell you have a lot of proven and practical recommendations on how to increase my social media branding.

    Thanks, again!

  66. #86 by MaryC on April 28, 2011 - 3:06 pm

    Hey Kristin,
    One thing that I love about your blog (and some others) is that you return and engage in discussion with the commenters. I’m far more inclined to revisit and comment if I feel that the blogger is interested in the followup discussion.

    Also, I love the blogger boosters who tweet the great blogs they do. I’ve been trying to do more of that. It’s a service to people who might miss out on great discussions and it’s also a help to the blogger.

    I’m signed on for your LIRW workshop. Can’t wait!

  67. #87 by BigLittleWolf on April 28, 2011 - 4:26 pm

    All terrific reminders. And I might add that trying to get outside our usual “circles” is a helpful and enjoyable activity as well. It opens our eyes, our minds, and broadens our communities. A little pollen here, a little pollen there. (Hmmm. Sounds like that post party you mentioned!)

    Delightful finding your blog. Wandered here via the Inconstant Gardener doing exactly what you suggested – commenting on blogs in his blog.

  68. #88 by Jess Witkins on April 28, 2011 - 5:30 pm

    Kristen, you took the words right out of my mouth. I hear from a lot of people that they read my blog and love it, but I do NOT have the comments to show that. Many of my followers don’t have their own blog, and the ones that do are my consistent comment-makers. Do you have a post out there or could you write one on how to draw in comments from people that only follow via facebook links or email? What would encourage this? I’ve tried asking questions to encourage discussion on topics, but usually even then, the comments relate back to something I’ve said and the not necessarily their own experiences with the topic. HELP!

    P.S. I’m signing up for your online class. I need you! lol.

  69. #90 by Kristen on April 28, 2011 - 7:15 pm

    Excellent points. I’ve been having trouble keeping up with having a regular blog, but in the very short time I’ve been reading and commenting on others’, I’ve noticed how quickly authentic online friendships (acquaintanceships) build. Common ground will do that!

  70. #91 by Sean May on April 28, 2011 - 7:28 pm

    I’ve been reading your blog for a good few months now (since it was featured on the WordPress homepage), and I’ve taken a lot of your advice. I think I’m going to do Friday Mash-ups from now on. I have a question and an answer for you.

    Question. You emphasise that commenting is a quick, time-efficient way of building your social media presence, but reading – reading multiple blogs and websites – can be extremely time-consuming. What advice do you have for managing your daily or weekly reading habits?

    Answer. My cool reader story is that I blogged about Stephen Hunt’s letter complaining about the dearth of science fiction, fantasy and horror coverage on World Book Night on the BBC. He left me a message – which was a very pleasant surprise.

  71. #92 by Suzanne Lucero on April 28, 2011 - 11:17 pm

    Kristen, I love your blog. Someday I’ll jump in and become an author with a platform and network with people. But for now, I think I’ll just read your excellent posts. Cheers

  72. #93 by Wayne Borean aka The Mad Hatter on April 29, 2011 - 6:21 pm

    When I was at RT, one of the PR experts recommended that an author with a book about to be released needed to sit down and e-mail as many bloggers as possible and see if they would do a review.

    Um…no.

    In fact, I raised my hand on that one. There are few things that will annoy bloggers more than unsolicited spam asking for us to put out effort for someone we don’t know from a hole in the ground.

    Yeah, sure. I will read your indie published 110,000 word high fantasy in my infinite free time, and write a favorable review, even though I have never talked to you or so much as seen a “Great blog” from you in my comments section. Yeah…I am right on that, right after I organize my sock drawer and paint my toenails with glittery unicorns.

    Bloggers are always looking for stuff to talk about. Many will even do reviews. I do them on rare occasions, but not for random people who e-mail me a form letter.

    Um, yes. That’s a great way to get added to the bloggers spam filter. Networking wins every time. If they know you, it’s a totally different situation.

    You hit it on the head beautifully Kristen.

    Which makes me wonder once again, why is Common Sense so Uncommon? Especially among PR drones?

    Wayne

  73. #94 by Geraldine Solon on April 29, 2011 - 9:34 pm

    Your blog has a lot of substance and offers pertinent information and advice for writers. I always enjoy reading your articles. Thanks for sharing!

  74. #95 by Taffy on April 30, 2011 - 2:47 am

    The blogs that educate me and/or make me laugh I try and subscribe to so I’m always updated on their posts. Then I can comment AND retweet.

  75. #96 by J A Murphy on April 30, 2011 - 5:27 am

    Thanks for another great post! As with your entry on the antagonist a short while ago, this could not have come at a more opportune time.

  76. #97 by Aimee Elizabeth on May 3, 2011 - 12:19 am

    Thank you for your post, very informative! Good info. Would you recommend primarily aiming to connect and build your “network” with bloggers that have similar subject matter? I have a very specific target audience and I am working on how best to reach them. Thank you for sharing,

    Aimee

    • #98 by Wayne Borean aka The Mad Hatter on May 3, 2011 - 12:59 pm

      Aimee,

      Think about it. Say you write about Sharks. Does it make sense to network with bloggers who concentrate on child rearing? How about politics? Wine? Biology? Human Evolution? Ocean Ecosystems? Lawyers?

      Ocean Ecosystems of course. Yeah, all the jokes about Lawyers come up, but really is someone interested in Wine going to care about Sharks? Not unless they used Shark Skin casks to age wine they won’t be.

      Which is why you see me hanging around Kristen’s blog, and Amy Shojai’s blog. I also write about software, so I hang around software blogs (and get paid to write for SemiAccurate). And I write about Canadian politics, and hang around some Canadian political blogs, pouring gasoline on the fire (which I’m really good at).

      You have to focus. A scatter gun approach tends to be messy, scares the neighbors, and won’t hit the target very often. The target of course is to make money, so that you can support yourself in a life of luxury.

      Since I live a simple life, my idea of luxury is keep me and Sammy, my Beagle hound well feed, and happy. Right Sam? No response. As usual, he’s asleep, cuddled up against me. Which means he’s happy.

      Wayne

  77. #99 by theaatkinson on May 4, 2011 - 11:32 pm

    Well I read your blog quite frequently and I’ve learned tons and tons. I’ve been commenting on blogs I read since I started blogging, but only because I like it when folks comment on mine; I had no idea what it could do for me–I just thought it was a nice thing to do for others.

    Thanks for making the info so durn clear each time you post.

  78. #100 by Arwen on May 5, 2011 - 1:52 am

    I often get more out of my cyber communitites than my physical ones and I LOVE it.

  79. #101 by RDoug on May 8, 2011 - 3:16 pm

    So, I awoke this morning, opened up my email and, lo and behold, I have a “pingback comment” moderation request for my blog. The only thing in the “comment” is a link to an entry in Thea Atkinson’s blog (http://theaatkinson.wordpress.com/2011/05/06/gonzoink-friday-blog-mashup-theas-3/).

    For a brief moment I said to myself, “Self, this looks suspiciously like something got past your spam filter,” but I almost immediately recognized the name as a fellow author on KindleBoards. “No, self. That’s go to me legitimate link for something. I approved the pingback and clicked onto the link. Voilà! Much to my (very pleasant) surprise, I find I’ve been listed as one of Thea’s three favorite blogs for the past week.

    So, I’m reading this fascinating, very unexpected, and totally unsolicited plug when I got to another link, to the blog that inspired Thea to do this. I clicked that link and wound up here.

    Great idea, Kristen. I like it. I like it a LOT. Also, I’ll be subscribing to your blog (something I’ve never done) just because I love your writing and the topics you do. (Now I’ll also have to go check out your books, as well)

    Anyway, many thanks for starting this. I usually do blog updates on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays on topics as varied as writing, books, movies, food & wine, photography, travel, and aviation safety, but now I’m considering doing a mashup on one of my nonscheduled blog days . . . perhaps as a filler for a short weekender.

    Keep up the good work, Kristen. You’re a peach.

  80. #102 by Nina Badzin on May 10, 2011 - 12:56 am

    Hey there K! I’ll start checking out the hashtag!

  81. #103 by Jeanne Ryan (Serenissima) on May 14, 2011 - 10:18 pm

    I think I like reading and commenting on other people’s blogs better than maintaining one of my own. Which is why I let my blog run dormant for a while. Your posts are making me seiously consider bringing it back to life.

  82. #104 by Alivia Anders on May 20, 2011 - 12:24 am

    Honestly? Beyond the great blog (/snicker snicker, lame joke I know) you’ve given me some food for thought. I never really thought that commenting on blogs, even if it’s just casual, would make any kind of impact. I figured if I followed after tons of blogs that held the same interest as me, maybe one day the favor would be returned by one or two of them. But I think I’m going to take your advice on this one, and go say hi to some fellow comment-chatters.

    And for the record, I paint my toenails with glittery unicorns. Flaming glittery unicorns.

  83. #105 by zongrik on May 31, 2011 - 4:38 pm

    You hit it on the sport. People will make comments about my blog on twitter. They will RT, but they won’t comment on the page.

    I try to comment on people’s blogs, because, if anything, what goes around comes around.

    I still need to know how to give people incentives to comment on my blog.I think the bottom line is that people don’t understand how important it is to bloggers to get those comments. I keep having to explain it to my family, friends and others.

    • #106 by Author Kristen Lamb on May 31, 2011 - 5:11 pm

      If it would help, use this post as a blog. As long as you give credit, I am happy to let you post my material. It might help educate your followers about how important it is to leave comments on the actual blog, how it benefits them AND you.

  84. #107 by Marianne Wheelaghan (@MWheelaghan) on November 7, 2011 - 9:46 am

    Hi Kirsten, just read this post, as recommended on the http://booksbywomen.org/nine-reasons-why-you-want-to-be-a-guest-blogger/#comments.
    Really helpful, much thanks🙂

  85. #108 by Isabel Wolff on August 26, 2013 - 7:21 am

    You have inspired me Kirsten – thank you so much. I have never had a blolg, and don’t feel I have the time, but this is beyond helpful and I’m very grateful. Isabel Wolff, author ‘A Vintage Affair’

    • #109 by Isabel Wolff on August 26, 2013 - 7:24 am

      Sorry, a slip of the wrist – I typed Kirsten, instead of Kristen. I look forward to reading your future posts.

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