Friday, September 16, 2011

BBAW: Blogging Tools & Tips


It's the last day of Book Blogger Appreciation Week and I hope you've enjoyed the posts and hopefully found some new blogs to follow!

Today’s Topic:The world of blogging is continually changing. Share 3 things you are essential tried and true practices for every blogger and 1-3 new trends or tools you’ve adapted recently or would like to in the future.

Out of all the topics this week, I find this one to be the hardest because I think that different tools and tips work differently for each blog and each book niche. I'll share what works for me and you can give it a try to see if it works for you too!

3 Essential Tried & True Practices:

1. Post Regularly - Yes, I'm horrible at this! BUT, when I do post regularly I see my traffic go up and my readers engage with my posts more.

2. Leave Em With A Question To Answer - Give readers a reason to respond to your post or review. Reviews get some of the lowest comments and it's usually because readers haven't read the book yet to comment on! Instead, come up with questions about the trope, what they like about X storyline or plot point, etc. Give them something that they can actually engage with.

3. Respond to Comments - Again, I'm not always the best with this and we are all busy bloggers, but when I do respond to comments I find that those readers are the ones who typically stop by more often and comment again.

My 3 Tips All Have 1 Thing In Common: ENGAGE YOUR READERS!

Now, for the 3 tools or trends I've found recently:

1. Klout - I'm still learning how to use this little bad boy, and it certainly give me credit for knowing about things I've never discussed, but so far I've been impressed with it's twitter tracking stats. What your true reach is with a tweet, how much you engage others on Twitter, etc.

2. TweetChat - I've known about this one for quite some time, but it's seriously awesome for following a #hashtag  on twitter during an event or conversation. Plus, you'll see everyone in real time who's using that hashtag so you can connect with more people who are into the same topics as you are. Likewise, follow certain hashtags on twitter! I can't tell you how much I learn and how many readers and authors I connect with by doing this.

3. Good Old Fashioned Excel - Seriously, recently creating an organizational system for logging print books, ebooks and audiobooks is completely changing my blogging experience. It always me to not only keep track of what I have and haven't read, but what I've posted, if I've emailed the author/publicist, have I asked for an interview/guest post, etc. I'm still getting this all situated, but I can't stress enough how having a system that treats this like a real business is going to do wonders for your sanity.

Again, my best advice - ENGAGE, ENGAGE, ENGAGE.

What's yours? If you're a reader, what things do you think are most effective for bloggers to do to engage with you and keep you coming back and commenting?

18 comments:

  1. Great advice! I'm also terrible at following up on comments . There's just so many parts to blogging!

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  2. Good advice about ending with a questions. It's the best way to start a discussion that I've found so far.

    Alison at The Cheap Reader

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  3. I always forget that second one, so thank you for writing about it. It makes it easier for people to comment when there is a specific idea to respond to, and it means you don't have to worry that the comment you leave isn't going to be worthless (I know I often wonder that when I want to say good review!)

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  4. I like to end discussion posts with a question. And I usually enjoy reading posts by others that end with questions as it gives a natural jumping off point for discussion in the comments.

    -jehara

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  5. I really need to learn more about interacting on Twitter. So far, I'm in the baby stages. Thanks for the heads-up on some new trends.

    I agree completely about engaging the reader...I've tried that one, too—leaving them with a question, but haven't done that on reviews. Good idea!

    Here's MY BBAW POST and
    MY WEBSITE

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  6. Excel is great, as is its online counterpart, Google Spreadsheets. I love the latter for docs I have to access on the go. Still not sold on Klout...I don't think I tweet enough!

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  7. Thanks for the tips. Never heard of Klout, but I am going to bookmark it and check it out later. Thanks for great tips.

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  8. I like the 'leave them with a question'. It's a great way to start interaction.

    I also try to participate in convos by responding to comments.

    I've seen people using Klout but I'm not exactly sure what it is and how it's beneficial.

    I use Goodreads to catalog my books and a spreadsheet to organize my review requests.

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  9. @Obscured Vixen Exactly! Thanks for stopping by!

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  10. @thecheapreader The asking a question thing seems to really be key - when I forget and leave it off I get no comments!

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  11. @Charlie (The Worm Hole) Thanks for stopping by! Yep, responding to comments seems like we should all know this but we get so busy!

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  12. @Creations by Laurel-Rain Snow I might love twitter now, but I started very slow and it took time to learn all the "tricks" to making it fun and productive. good luck!

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  13. @Erin ah - google docs - i'm still trying to get used to using those. Not succeeding yet though. :)

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  14. @Lenasledgeblog.com I think Klout is still growing and will get better with time. Some of it's features are total crap to me, but some of the twitter stats are great until twitter comes out with their own soon.

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  15. @The Book Vixen hey lady! I love GoodReads too - I post my reviews there but I'm trying to be more active in discussions too.

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  16. To answer your QUESTION...I've also found that ending with a question pulls people in and makes blogging more of a conversation. Great advice.

    I just found out about Klout and haven't done much with it.

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  17. great advice especially replying to comments, how can you have a dialogue if only one voice is heard.

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