31 DBBB Day 29: Develop a Plan to Boost Your Blog’s Profile

create a planThis is Day 29 of 31 Days to Build a Better Blog, a group project 60+ of us bloggers are doing together in an effort to help each other become better bloggers.

“Five minutes. That’s it,” I insist as I log onto Facebook after tucking my three kids into bed. Forty minutes later my eyes are numb from having scanned through the two hundred ballet recital pictures of a long-lost friend’s daughter. A friend I have not seen or talked to in well over twenty-six years. Can we say, “aimless drifting”?

Darren warns of the trap of wasting online time. I know this temptation. I live in this land. I literally have to guard my watch when it comes to reading blogs and profiles. Otherwise I get lost in cyber-world. And no one comes to my rescue—except my middle son needing yet another drink of water before he can peacefully sleep.

So I like the idea of having a plan and being actively present where my “desired readers” gather. Every comment and guest post and tweet—though I have not yet succumbed to the Twitter madness—builds our blog’s profile. And it begs the questions, “Who do people think I am? Do they want to visit my space? Do I have anything interesting or inspiring to actually say?”

Intentionality is key. Knowing where we are going, why we are going there, and what to do while our mouse scrolls the page.

I have much to consider.

One addition to this “blog profile development” which I believe to be vital, is that we are real. Just real. People want to see our scars. They want to know that our words mean something. They look to see that we can identify with their places of weakness or areas of insecurity.

When it comes to our niche of Christian blogging, words of Truth mixed with honest moments of “fleshing it out,” resonates in the reader’s heart and mind. It makes our blog profile intriguing and attractive. It makes it real.

I must admit that I am glad Darren left some freedom room. He closed with a note saying that all online activity does not need to be productive. So, with that allowance, I’m off. “Five minutes. That’s it.”

Discussion:

  1. How do you actively build your blog’s profile and readership online?
  2. What new ways do you want to incorporate from Darren’s suggestions?
  3. Where do you find the majority of your desired readers?

The extra mile…

[image by 12392252@N03]

LaraSpeaker and writer, Lara is passionate for the Word of God. She describes the beat of her heart to be revival in the hearts of fellow children of the King. Blogging is one of her outlets for sharing her own adventure with this amazing God. Visit her at www.UnrehearsedAdventure.blogspot.com.

21 Responses to “31 DBBB Day 29: Develop a Plan to Boost Your Blog’s Profile”

  1. Nice precis Lara – I've just read Darren's words straight after yours and you've done a great job of sticking his 5 or 6 pages of thoughts in one and in your own words.

    I'm very guilty of this though but it is mor ethan just on the internet. I want to happily drift through life without any real set plan or purpose. I've made several concious and long lasting attempts to develop a purpose driven life" but it isn't me, it isn't my character and I don't believe it's my purpose either.

    So I'm going to blow a raspberry at Darren – thssssssp!

    There, I feel better now. This 31DBBB process is a short term thing and I can easily commit to that – the only few long term things I'm committed to that don't change are my God, my wife & family, my friends and wanting to do a Physics degree.

    Sorry, I have no words of wisdom to offer folks looking to get a purpose though :)

    • Thanks Stuart. I'm glad you got that off your chest. ;) I know what you mean though. Walking with a plan while being continually sensitive to the Spirit's leading…no matter the direction.

  2. There was a time when I hated the word "discipline," and would much more gladly shout "Carpe diem!" It's taken me a long time to see that discipline and efficiency means that you definitely can be more effective at what you're doing. As Merlin Mann would put it, efficiency is about getting the things you have to do done so that you can get on to doing the things you want to do. Or Richard Foster: "a disciplined person does the right thing at the right time for the right reasons."

    I think all of that applies here. Our blogs exist for a reason, and we want them to fulfill their purpose well, which means focus, intentionality, and discipline. Even writers, dancers, and artists have to be disciplined.

    There's even the Biblical injunction to "make the best use of the time."

    But I also agree with Stuart. Jesus talked a lot about how becoming childlike is key to entering the Kingdom, and I believe that's partially what He meant. Kids take joy in small things, and live in the moment. When a person becomes too focused on accomplishing a particular goal, they can cease to be a person and start to become a machine.

    • Spot on Chris.

      Discipline (and commitment) is key to any life. Even though my life "drifts" in terms of my purpose I am disciplined in that I get up every day, I go to work and do the best I can, I care for my family, etc, etc – but as you hinted, discipline doesn't mean getting rid of teh childlike qualities that should be inherent in all of us.

      I've long said that physically I'm X years old (46now) but mentally I'm 13 – full of energy and Carping the Diem (excuse the pidgin) without a care about the future because I'm young and someone else is in control.

  3. yip, I can cycle through Twitter, comments, facebook, twitter, comments, facebook without any strategy. And before I know it, hours have passed and I have nothing to show for it out than some dangling links with my name on them.
    I need a schedule, more so nowadays, since I have another child.
    Besides I have so many things I want to do for editing videos and to make videos of my daughter.
    The days can just dissipate under the nothingness that the Internet can be.
    Can make me quite ineffective as a blogger and a parent.
    hmmm
    I feel guilty

  4. I thought you could get in trouble for profiling ;-)
    http://greeninventionscentral.blogspot.com/2010/0

  5. I can get lost in the cyber world too. Not long ago, during the 31 DBBB, I lost half a day browsing layout templates. It is easy to do. I am going to have to discipline myself. The word itself makes me feel as if I'm being sent to the principal's office.
    I know it may sound corny, but I may have to set a timer and walk away after the the timer dings.
    I try to generate new traffic through Facebook, Twitter, and email. Facebook has been the most effective so far. I also ordered some cheap business cards. (around $10 for 500) It has our ministry name, elevator pitch, and website only. We leave them at coffee shops, book stores, restuarants, etc. We just leave them at different places we visit even when we travel.

    Business Card info (imagine very contemporary style card with our logo banner)

    Speaking Grace Online
    Church on your time http://www.speakinggraceonline.com

    Review post is up today at http://www.ronniespoon.blogspot.com

    • I like the review. Wasn't sure where to comment so am saying it here. The book sounds really good. I think here in the US we forget sometimes how great God's Word is, like them that's all that they had whearas here we have music and all the other stuff and sometimes I've noticed on Sundays or in church events we don't even open our Bibles. I'm going to have to read that book sometime, thanks for reviewing it.

    • I like the timer idea. Hey. It works for my kids. :)

  6. I am fairly new to the whole social media craze, only been on Facebook a year, and Twitter a couple weeks. So I am still experimenting with what to do with them to help my blog. Once I figure out what helps, I suppose a plan would be in order.

    I can see how we could waste a lot of time doing things that add no value to our blogs or to our character. I suppose the other side of this is to consider all these media venues as ministry and to go at it with that purpose. Maybe that would seem more like "redeeming the time."

    My post today is On the Mountain and In the Valley: http://junctionforjesus.blogspot.com/2010/06/on-m

  7. Great post today. Important! I really like Richard Sipes comment, "I can see how we could waste a lot of time doing things that add no value to our blogs or to our character."

    I a couple years back picked up a major clinical depression. A major surgery kicked it of and I still fight hard to regain ground even today. While I have always struggled with discipline, trying to make it a major part of rebuilding life has not been easy. Just maintaining a focus to build around has been one of my struggles.

    But I have gained new ground through 31DBBB.

    I didn't get to read Darren's lesson because of a computer glitch that has me locked out of all my files. (I'm tying on a new computer here.) So an looking forward to getting back to his material.

    Again, great lesson. Great work Lara!

    • Thanks Wayne. Sorry to hear of your battle. I have had dear friends walk that road. I pray God pours fresh strength with further vision of the spiritual weapons He gives to fight the spiritual battles waging.

  8. I use social media a lot for blogging. Most of my readers are either on twitter, facebook, or her through 31DBBB. So when I have posted I put it on twitter, facebook, … I also tend to put my blog address as my website on any social networking site I can do that. Using your blog address as your ID when commenting or such can also be helpful because if they click on your name it drives them to the blog. For more on how I use it and what I've learned from social media check out my post for today "Using Social Media for Blogging Ideas" (not your typical post but it's fun and goes along with yesterdays on cereal..going to be a fun, lighthearted week). http://tijuanabecky.wordpress.com/2010/06/10/usin

    I spend a lot of time online, that is my way of being social and being with people so i'm on a lot. I try to keep an open mind during all of it and look for ideas. What could I use from what I learning or doing here for a blogpost, or how could I incorporate it. Never know what'll come out of surfing through those pictures of a long lost friend.

  9. I can relate to wasting time on social media. I have found that if I want to be focused I do have to limit my time on those sights during the day when I should be working on other things. If I want to use them for fun I have to limit that to the evenings for a short period of time. If not, I can look around three hours later and haven't accomplished anything.

    I realize that I cannot do everything in one day so I am trying to put everything on a chart by priority to work through. As part of this I am giving social media a small part of the marketing time and limiting myself for how long I can be on there so that I have to be intentional with what I do. Like most everyone else, I am working on this daily for best practice.

    My post for today is: http://larrywestfall.com/do-something-for-someone

  10. For all that we certainly do need to have a concentrated plan and make sure we don't just sit around wasting time on these websites, I don't think that our branding plan needs to be as disciplined as Darren makes it out to be. Remember that he wrote the book for all audiences, but as a Christian blogger, (and most of using our blogs for ministry) the brand is Jesus. If He's our "brand" and we find our identity in that, then we don't really have to worry TOO much about a branding campaign because it will come out in every interaction we have online. Sure there's still fluff and nonsense, but even that is part of the brand.
    That being said, we can't waste time branding and then forget to about the product.

  11. Today's 31DBBB post may be the hardest lesson to learn….and I thought SEO was difficult.
    http://campfirecowboyministries.com/2010/06/strai

  12. I think today's is one of the most important of the 31. I could spend 24 hours a day every day doing the tasks discussed in this series – writing blog posts, reading other blogs' posts, commenting on other blogs, replying and engaging with those who comment on our blogs, engaging people in social media, going to forums, helping our readers – and still not do everything I'd like to. The comments already posted demonstrate just about all of us have struggled at one time or another with "drift" and letting time get away from us online. I guess what I'm saying is…

    Get this one wrong and you can really screw up your life.

    I agree with what several others have said – that it's important to be disciplined and set boundaries with our time.

    But after we determine how much time we want to allocate towards blogging-related activities, I think it's really important to take the next step and create a plan that prioritizes the specific things we want to do in that time. Otherwise we won't accomplish what we want to in our limited time.

  13. In life people that are purpose driven with a sense of mission to fulfil a vision do achieve much. Blogging is not an exception. In blog you have to be purpose driven to achieve you aim in your blog.

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