A blog can be a powerful platform to express opinions, thoughts, ideas, and start a movement to create change in the world. And while many bloggers are effectively doing just that, some bloggers are missing an important component to their craft that could bring them an even bigger stream of steady, connected, (and empowered) readership.
If you have a blog and any level of readership, there are ways you can increase your numbers by incorporating more of your readers’ voices in your blog.
While your blog is your creation, as you gain subscribers, they become part of your blog. In a sense, it becomes a partnership between you and your readers.
In the beginning, you may have started out by only expressing your experiences and thoughts, but at some point, if you want your readership to grow in numbers – and increase the depth of connection with existing subscribers – you’ll need to incorporate your readers’ voices into your content.
Address your readers’ concerns
Addressing your readers’ concerns doesn’t mean you have to start writing articles about points of view you don’t agree with. It just means you need to find ways to address what’s going on in their world, even if only on a general level.
For example, if you run a food blog and you’re a proud omnivore and love your steak, while you may not be a vegetarian, you can still address your vegetarian readers by creating a section to talk about vegetarian dishes you like.
Another example would be if you run a coffee blog and you don’t like “white coffee” because you don’t think it’s not worth the cost. You know you have readers who either love white coffee or are curious about it. So you could write an article to objectively explore the subject of white coffee, and when you do, you’ll gain a deeper connection with your readers who have been wondering what the deal is with white coffee.
Remember the purpose of your blog
If you’re like most bloggers, the purpose of your blog is to share information with people they can use to enrich their lives. So it makes sense to investigate to find out what people need help with and what they’re curious about – and then help them with that.
A blog is a perfect opportunity to solve problems
When you answer people’s questions on your blog, you don’t always have to take a structured Q&A approach. You could simply listen to the conversations in your comments section and publish a new article addressing the issues your readers have brought up. Or, you could write a how-to article that answers a question sent to you through email. For example, this blog turned a question about how to remove a potted plant stain from a limestone hearth into an article – a problem many readers have likely experienced.
While almost every blogger takes the time to address their own concerns through posting articles about what they’re passionate about, not every blogger takes the time to address their readers’ concerns. And sometimes their readers’ concerns are an extension of their own, but with an expanded point of reference that the blogger may not have the experience to access.
What this means is that as wonderful and popular as many blogs are, many blogs end up being one-sided and ignore the questions and concerns of even their most dedicated readers.
Everyone has a problem they want to be solved
There’s a reason the “Dear Abbey” columns are so popular and have survived as a newspaper staple for decades. People have problems, and they want to know how they can solve them. This is a fundamental aspect of human nature that hasn’t changed since the dawn of time.
When your content is useful to humanity as a whole, people are more likely to share it with their friends. And if you’re a blogger, you want to reach as many people as possible. The more problems you can solve, the more you can connect with your readers inside of their world, and the more loyal they’ll be.