Friday, August 13, 2010

Blogging Idiosyncrasies

Everyone has their own style of blogging and much of that is due to personal preference.

But what works best?

Well, I'm going to allow you guys (and gals) to tell me!

Posting Length-

We were told in Blog Book Tours class that 250 words is ideal. My posts tend to be closer to 500 words though and I've seen others post much longer pieces. Now, I confess that I don't always read the really long posts, but how about you? What's the ideal length? At what point during a post do you develop ADHD?

Posting Frequency-

Some post a couple times a week, some daily, and some multiple times a day. I've found that every other day works best for me, and it provides those who miss a day to catch my posts. How much is too much? How much is not enough? How many bloggers do you want to strangle for clogging up your Google Reader?

Posting Time-

Morning? Afternoon? Evening? I post early in the morning and at least half of the blogs I follow do the same. Some post later in the evening, and occasionally I will miss those posts. When is best for you?

Comments -

Some blogs garner a lot of comments. I think the amount of followers and quality of posts affects comments. Interaction seems to increase comments, too. I think the biggest factor is the amount of comments we leave on other blogs. What do you think increases blog comments? Does bribery help?

I'm done. Opinions welcome! Snarking allowed, too. (Go ahead, Simon - you know you want to!)

74 comments:

welcome to my world of poetry said...

Most interesting Alex. I used to post about twice a week.....until Arlee done is A to Z challenge then I got into the habit of everyday posting,
I write about whatever the mood takes me as I write poetry on my life experiences then that's what you all get.
I usually try to write last thing at night as all you across the big sea are up and about so I know some of you see my post (I hope)
Comments are very important to me and I treasure each and everyone I get , I do also try to comment to all the followers of mine who write a post as that's very important also.

Have a good week-end.
Yvonne.

Powdered Toast Man said...

Yes I have the glory of leaving the first comment Normally I'm like the 53rd commenter.

I like to read medium length posts. Short is not enough (so I don't know what to comment) and too long loses my attention unless it grabs my attention.

I like to post everyday except on the weekends. I have so many ideas that I need to write something. I used to post several times a day but then I don't get the feedback I want.

I am a night owl. I write my posts between 2 and 7 am and I post them in the morning, sometimes early afternoon.

I try to comment on whoever comments on me plus whoever I nornally read. I don't like people that follow just so you will follow them, they never leave comments. I also respond to everyone's comments via email to be more personal. It is hard to get around to all the blogs I want to.

I find that guest posts on other blogs works for more traffic too.

iZombie said...

i once try tried to post 3 a day very early in the morning, but the coffee i had not set in. i would make clear mistakes from typos, wrong photos... and well just stupid things. then my fears that if i didn't post stuff people who just stop coming. i love people to comment on things going on inside my head, it calms the voices. so any wacky thought or picture fuels my fire, so i feed it.

now currently i am unemployed blogger so i have the time to post more crazy. i enjoy places like you with real content and interesting plot lines. i cannot hold more than a few words in my head, and if i read all those blogs... hours pass. so please stop by... start clapping... so my tinker doesn't loose it's bell.
jeremy
iZombie

Ted Cross said...

I wish I knew the secrets. I just post whenever something strikes my fancy, though I try to do at least once per week if not more. The posts that I care about the most don't seem to draw as many comments.

Journaling Woman said...

I have a short attention span so 250 words is probably my limit. However, if yours are 500 then you are keeping my attention. It's probably because 1) you are interesting 2) and you put breaks in your copy- as in headers or subtitles. It helps.

I love comments. That's the only way I can get to know my peeps.

Teresa

Jules said...

I wish I too knew the answers but I'm still learning sooo much. It took me an hour just to get Yvonne's lovely award up.

I post daily, in fear of people losing interest. I'm a wind bag but do consciously try to cut down the word count. I'm aware ADD. :)

I try to read and comment on as many as I can. Like Yvonne, I love comments; good or bad but then I like people. (Well, most)

See told you I was a wind bag! :D
Trying To Get Over The Rainbow

Matthew Rush said...

Simon should change his name to Snarkman. Or Vodkasaurus. Or not.

I think it's all a little subjective Alex but you ask some very good questions. Personally I read and blog from work (shhh) so if someone doesn't post between 6-8 AM I will likely miss it. I like to post and read every day, but blogs like yours that don't come up everyday are cool too.

I don't care for multiple posts in a single day unless there is an important reason. I've only done it once or twice myself.

Comments are strange. There are so many factors involved.

Matthew Rush said...

Oops, I forgot to mention:

Today's guest blogger is Ted Cross!

Piedmont Writer said...

I used to post everday but had to cut back to write. Now it's M-W-F in the early morning. I like to comment to everyone who visits, especially if it's an interesting topic but somedays I can only post a general thanks for stopping by comment.

I try and keep my posts informative. I know a lot of them are too long but I talk a lot in real life so it's hard to curb my enthusiasm.

aspiring_x said...

i think that a lot of my blogging opinions come from time crunch. i want to follow so many blogs- and won't follow unless i plan on reading what people have to say.

so, super long posts bug me. this one is a great length, but some! i just keep scrolling down and down and UGH!!

frequency depends on how long posts are. like dezz- he doesn't have long posts, so reading them every day (sometimes multiple in a day) isn't bad at all. but those who post long and often... it just takes so much time to read everything!

the one unforgiveable blog error- is white letters on black backgrounds. if i look at them too long they actually give me migraines- not just headaches. parts of my vision blur out, parts of my body go numb, and there is so much pain!

Christine Danek said...

Well, I post 3 times a week. Otherwise nothing else gets done including writing.
I prefer the mornings just because I think most bloggers are.
I try to keep my posts shorter if I can. I try to read long posts but sometimes I don't have a lot of time so I tend to gravitate towards shorter posts (although I will read yours.)
I love comments and read all of them. I try to comment as much as I can but sometimes my time is limited.
Interesting post.
Have a great weekend!

Sylvia Dickey Smith said...

Great questions, Alex, and ones I've asked myself. I sometimes skip over long posts too because of a time shortage. Like yesterday when I was reading a most MARVELOUS post by Kathy Waller at

http://towriteistowrite.wordpress.com/

It was so great, I'm going back today to finish, but yesterday 10 things came at me while I was in the middle of a marvelous story. (If you don't follow her, she's fantastic writer! I recommend her blog.

I struggle with every day myself, and think I'll move to Monday Wed. Friday, or some such. Sometime I'm on a role and other times, I'm dry--or just don't have the time to work on my WIP and blog, too.

Great questions. I will see what others say about the answers and hopefully improve mine. I agree with the interaction on blogs--gets more readers. it also helps us know we are not streaming in the wind!
Best,

Sylvia Dickey Smith

DEZMOND said...

Posts have to be concise because 90% of people won't read anything long. Yours are great, never too long, never too short :)

Posts should be published every day, or at least every other day depending on the blog's topic. People who post multiple posts every day are usually digging their own hole because most people come to consider them spammers in their blogrolls :) And people tend to leave more comments if you have just one post daily than when you have multiple daily posts.
We wouldn't mind seeing your posts, Alex, more often :))

It's best posting in the morning, because most people love the forbidden fruit so they read our blogs at their workingplaces :)) Since I'm not in USA, your morning time is my early afternoon, so I usually do posts in the evening, save them, and then post them for you in my afternoon next day which is your morning. But I get comments and visitors throughout the day.

Interaction is the key to having a lot of comments. But the problem with that is that there are a lot of bloggers who visit dozens and dozens of other blogs every day and leave comments only so that the blog owners would come to their blogs as well and not because they really have something intelligent to say and because they really like the topic of a post. I believe that's called a blog-whoring, excuse my French :) So, people should comment with quality not quantity.
I personally prefer a big number of visitors and readers instead of followers and commentators, because that's the sign of real love :))

Michele Emrath said...

I try to post every day, but it's more selfish than anything. I have so many ideas I want to explore, and such few areas to express myself that it's really therapeutic to blog.

Oh, and long posts? Sometimes they're necessary for the subject, but I don't always read the entire posts either!

The best way to get peole to comment? Two: quality and participation. Participation brings people there, but quality earns great comments and keeps readers coming back. You have obviously hit the mark here!

My biggest goal is to respond to everyone who comes by to comment. And I hate those email responses! If someone wants an email, they'll click the little box.

Michele
SouthernCityMysteriesmall

DEZMOND said...

@Aspiring X
Vics, thanks for the support, I know you and our dear Alex are some of my beloved regular lurkers :)))

Cold As Heaven said...

I have no particular theme nor style, except that I try to write relatively short posts. I just write, about whatever I like, when I want to. That's the fun of blogging; different from my job, I don't need to be professional and organized >:)

Cold As Heaven

Clarissa Draper said...

Posting Length-

I should only write short posts but I know that I have lots of information I want to cover in some of them. I don't expect people to read the whole thing unless they are trying to use the specific info. I also try to leave questions to involve the reader.

Posting Frequency-

I post once a day. If a blogger post more that that, I won't read it. I can't keep up. So most blogs I visit only post once a day or less.

Posting Time-

I know evening is the best time to post but I don't always get around to it then so usually the afternoons.

Comments -

Bribery helps. But, I know you come to my blog everyday, and I come to yours. I love to leave comments but I hate when I don't have a question to answer because all I usually write is "nice post".

CD

Mason Canyon said...

To me the length has to do with the subject matter. If the post is interesting, entertaining and/or informative, I don't notice the length. I post everyday but I've been fortunately to have some great authors guest blogging so that helps out. I usually don't pay attention to the time a post is up because it comes up in Google Reader and it's there when I get a chance to look at it. Best of luck figuring out all the secrets to posting.

Mason
Thoughts in Progress

Helen Ginger said...

I don't think it's imperative that you post every day, but do think you need to be consistent. I hope bribery doesn't work, since I don't have anything to bribe with.

As to length, I've been asking my guest posters to limit their post to 500 words. The problem with that is they rarely stick to that, then I add an intro and wrap-up and voila, it's too long. I think I'll shorten it and ask for no more than 300 and we'll see if that helps.

Helen

Connie Arnold said...

Oops, my first comment didn't seem to work. Great topic, Alex, and interesting answers. I look for blogs that have a message or something meaningful to me and not too long. There are so many great blogs available! Visiting and commenting seems the best way to get visitors and comments on your own blog.

Happily Cheesy said...

Ah, the perpetual quandary.

For length, I'm all for shorter--so long as its worthy of spending the time to get to the blog. Condense please!

The unfortunate truth is, I don't have a desk job. I educate crazy kids all day, spend significant time in community service, and pursue artsy projects at night. If I didn't comment on your blog, chances are I still read it, but got pulled away by breaking glass or screams and fistfights. It's definitely true though--the more blogs you read/comment on, the more commentary you receive.

N. R. Williams said...

As you know Alex, I'm still a new-by to blogging. I am trying to post three times a week. I don't have many followers or many commenting yet. Even some that I follow daily are not doing the same. Oh well.

I am trying to find topics that will interest others, not just myself. At this writing I haven't had to struggle to hard. I think the hardest thing is finding time to juggle blogging, writing and editing.

Nancy
N. R. Williams, fantasy author

Alan Orloff said...

I try to post M-W-F and schedule it for 7 am. I also try for short-medium length posts, but, sometimes...

I used to include more graphics (especially when I was learning Photoshop), but now I find I usually don't have the time.

Carol Kilgore said...

I blog M/W/F and post in the mornings. My posts are usually short, every once in a while extending up to 300 words or so. Every once in a while I run long. I try to post photos at least every other week or so. I also have a format: Mondays are writing related; Wednesdays anything goes; Fridays are a Top 10 list. I comment on a lot of blogs and so far have been able to respond to every comment on mine. Add in content, and I think it all helps.

Carol
Under the Tiki Hut

J.L. Stratton said...

I probably need to heed at least some of this advice. I'm terrible about not being very consistent in my blogging.

If I'm working on a project, specifically if I am nearing completion, I tend to blog less often.

Again, good post. I should probably pay attention to this but, my ADHD gets in the way.

arlee bird said...

Length -- I have posted on this topic recently. I had been typically been posting 1000 words, but of late I've gotten it down to about 500-600 words on the average. I may try for 250 words, but I will probably sacrifice content in doing so. A very pithy post is often either trite or very limited on points made.

Frequency -- I started posting daily when my blog began and now it's mostly my challenge to myself to complete one solid year of daily posting. After the end of September I will probably be reassessing this strategy as it takes to much time.

Comments -- To receive comments I think it's almost a necessity for most of us to give many comments. A high profile blog--like an agent blog--gets the comments without any effort, I guess because it's the place to see and be seen. Most of us have to really work at getting our comments. I've posted on this more than once and will probably do so again. Eventually I may experiment and see how many comments I can continue to get without commenting on other blogs, but then again how can I resist commenting--I'm hooked.

Posting time-- I schedule my pieces to post at 2 AM. Since I tend to check Blogger several times a day it's pretty random which blogs I see. I always try to visit the bloggers who have visited me though.

arlee bird said...

Sorry -- one more point about blogs that get a lot of comments. Quality certainly helps, but I have seen some blog posts--probably none from anyone in the company that you keep--that are ridiculously stupid, trite, and of poor quality that garner tons and tons of comments, which are likewise shallow and trite. These blogs also have tons of followers. They are not literary type blogs. I guess they are mostly in it for followers and comment numbers. I'm not sure I get that.

Lee
Tossing It Out

Old Kitty said...

Hi

I think I find that the best way to use blogger for me is to be considerate.

When I first started, I'd post whatever I fancied every hour or whenever I fancied throughout THE DAY and now I realise how annoying it must have been to the 6 followers I had at the beginning (sorry!).

Also now I realise that most people have day jobs like me and like me are unable to spend the whole day just blogging! But if they're like me I tend to snatch blogging time at lunch and tea breaks, so now I keep my blog posts SHORT and succint and once a day or every other day posts. Because I know how it's like to try and snatch blogging time at work even during a lunch break!

The underlying truth about getting comments is to follow and comment in return (and if you really want to gain tons more followers, link your blog to facebook and/or twitter) but you still have to follow and comment in return and regularly. Unless you are Nathan Berensford (sorry, sp) and such like, you really have to work very hard to get your followers and your comment levels up.

And above all you have to show you actually read the blog posts and not skim! LOL! People's blog pieces are very personal to the individual and I think they deserve the time to be read- if you are a follower.

But on the otherhand if you like putting up long blog posts everyday always, please think of the time and energy needed to read them by your followers. This is where the craft of editing might come in handy!

Take care
x

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

I like what you post every day, Yvonne!

Powdered, sometimes the weekends are quieter.

iZombie, I promise to stop by and add to the voices in your head.

I'm sorry, Ted.

Journaling, that's good to know!

Matthew, I do a lot of my blogging from work, too. (That's when I watch a lot of my movies - don't tell anyone!) And I think Snarkman works for Simon.

Piedmont, a woman talking a lot? Never!

Dezz's posts are always interesting, Aspiring!

Thank you, Christine!

Great points, Dezz. And don't want to be a blogwhore!

Clarissa, yours are the perfect length and always interesting. And I'll remember to ask more questions.

Hi Connie! Thanks for stopping by.

Happily Cheesy, your day must be interesting!

Lee, you are really close to hitting that goal!

Charles Gramlich said...

Short posts are definitely better. I try to keep mine short but don't always succeed. commenting on other blogs adn responding to comments on your own blog are critical for building readership, I think.

Holly Ruggiero, Southpaw said...

Yes, shorter posts are always better but not always better. What? Let me ‘splain. I see a short post I think “Yeah, quick read, quick comment” but sometimes they contain no meat. I think the trick is more in the formatting. Like your post here - short paragraphs with white space and bold headings. I still see is as a doable read.

Frequency: I like people who post 2-4 times a week. More than that and I can’t keep up. I followed a blogger who posted between 20-40 times A DAY! When it hit 66 I just stopped following. I’m with you - every other day is best that way you let everyone have a chance to read your post before the next one come on and that way time doesn’t matter. Not everyone check posts daily.

Comments? You got me.

Nebular said...

Posting Length: 200 - 400 words.

Posting Frequency: It depends.. sometimes I post once or twice a day, sometimes 3-4 times a week.

Posting Time: Morning and Afternoon. My mind becomes less clear when it's dark :)

Comments: More or less, comments are always appreciated ;)

The Old Silly said...

"Does bribery help?"

Lol, probably would! I agree with these as key issues re: blogging. And face it - you can't please everyone all the time with frequency, length, time of day, etc. I think consistency is key, people who follow you will know your rhythm and follow it if they like your blog enough.

Pat Tillett said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Pat Tillett said...

Great food for thought Alex!

Posting Length-
I let the subject matter dictate the length of my posts. If it’s longer than what I like to read, I break it up into parts. But I figure the folks who actually read my blog don’t care, because they like what I write.

Posting Frequency-
I post daily. A lot of what I post is the possible bones of future book chapters, so every other day may be a good idea. It could help me free up some time to actually write. I don’t care if someone posts 10 times a day or once every 10 days. If I like their stuff, I’m going to check it all out anyway.

Posting Time-
I almost always post at 7:00 AM EST. I figure if folks in other time zones like what I post, they’ll find it. The blogs I consider my favorites have shortcuts on my computer. I don’t bother with the reader. I just go straight to them.

Comments -
In many cases, I think the number of followers to a blog has very little impact on comments. I know of folks who have many hundreds of followers, but only a small group of them comment. Why? They use Follow Friday and every other gimmick to increase FOLLOWERS, but they do NOTHING to increase READERS. Of course some folks do in fact sign up and also read, but I’m speaking in general terms.

Commenting on other blogs does increase your own traffic, that’s for sure. But the primary draw is what’s posted. If someone posts good stuff, people will find them. I don’t follow blogs I don’t like and I don’t comment if I have nothing to say. There are several blogs I follow and leave comments on, that don’t follow me. I don’t care, because I like their blogs.

Although I don't care of a blogger doesn't respond to my comments on their blog, I always try to respond to every comment I receive on mine.

Simon C. Larter said...

Post length, schmost length. My interview with Victoria Mixon today was 2k words long, but it needed to be. I could've asked fewer questions, but then we wouldn't have gotten to know the fine lady as well.

I post when I damn well feel like it, but try to have posts go live at midnight EST.

And comments usually follow when you say something controversial, or just plain ludicrously silly.

SNARKITY SNARK SNARK SNARK!

That work, my good man? :)

Joanne Brothwell said...

Hey Alex,
Great questions. I think about this topic all the time.

I love to blog, but trying to find the time is the issue for me. I tend to write short blurbs for my personal blog (250 max), but have to write longer ones for the group blog I write for (500 plus). I hate the 500 word ones, both to write and to read. I like instant gratification!

I love to read blogs too, but the time factor again interferes. Blogging is very reciprocal, the more you comment, the more comments you get. I do my best to balance it all. But I always place writing before blogging.

Karen Lange said...

I prefer reading and writing posts that are around 250-500 words. I post twice a week, which suits my writing schedule best, and they are scheduled to post early in the a.m. I agree, I miss some of those that are posted late in the day. Course, when extra busy, I miss some no matter when they are posted.
Have a great weekend,
Karen

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Thanks, Holly. And 66 times in one day? Too much!

Nebular, more than one person has commented about the fuzzy thoughts at night.

Pat, I am responding to yours! And you're right - I've seen bloggers with hundreds and hundreds of followers, but the follower to comment ratio is really low.

Simon, I expected nothing less!

RaShelle said...

Hey Alex, Good questions. Good answers. I try every other day and not to long. And that's becuz I try to get to those I follow and say something meaningful. I think if others are doing the same, I don't want to take too much of their time and want to make it worth a read.
ps: I have an award for you.

Amanda Sablan said...

I'm not picky at all with any of that. There are some fabulous blogs that only post once a week, and some every day. I usually stick to every other day myself. As for post length, I skim the ones over 1k.

February Grace said...

I'm working on trying to put up shorter posts. I know people want them- and also I've got to start rationing my eyesight more wisely.

I set posts to auto-pub at midnight EST because it just suits me. To me that is like posting at noon would be for other people in the Northern Hemisphere LOL.

Besides, with bloggy friends overseas, at least it's a good time for me to post for somebody besides myself. For them, and for the insomniacs, I post late.

interesting post!

bru

Lynda Young said...

Length: shorter the better. If it's not short then it needs to be broken up with headings. No walls-o-text.

Frequency: no more then once a day. No less than 3 times a week.

Time: I'm an Aussie and I've tried posting various times but I get the most comments when I post early in the morning.

Comments: I will always comment back when someone comments on my blogs.

W.I.P. It: A Writer's Journey

Pat Tillett said...

"follower to comment ratio!" I spent about five minutes trying to come up with a good way to describe that! You hit it right on the head! Thanks...

Raquel Byrnes said...

I like posts on the shorter side. Usually blogfest entries hike the wordcout up, but thats not too often. I like posts that I learn somethng from.

I like consistancy. If someone posts at night, then post at night. Otherwise I might miss their something.

Comments tend to go up with links from other blogs. Interviews, contests, blogfests, that kind of thing. I find a lot of great blogs through awards given by a blog I already follow.

Laura Eno said...

I only manage to get my fridayflash posted once a week. Anything more and I'd spend all my time posting and commenting, instead of writing.

500 words is comfortable. If the blogger posts more than 2x a week I probably won't have time to comment on all the posts. When my google reader shows me there's 200 posts to be read, I throw my hands in the air and mark them all as read so I can start over. :)

Susan Fields said...

Great post - I love to give my opinion. :)

I think the shorter the post, the better. I know some bloggers who always have short and sweet posts, and I'll go there whenever I see they have a new post up. The ones that have longer posts I don't visit as often.

I post three times a week, which seems just about right for me. Often enough to keep something new up most of the time, but not enough to drive me or my blog friends crazy (hopefully!)

I post first thing in the morning. I don't know why, that just seems to work well.

I definitely notice a correlation between the amount of comments I make and the amount of comments I get. I make every effort to leave a comment on the blog of everyone who commented on mine (though not always the same day). I suspect a lot of people do the same.

Donna Hole said...

It's not the post length that determins whether I finish or not, its the content. If I've got my nose to the screen I will read it all, even if I have to come back a second time. Mine are usually way long.

But, I don't post every day either. A couple times a week, if I have time. I'm trying to be more consistent. I don't read blogs every day, so those that do post a lot don't always get read. Sometimes I catch up, sometimes not.

I usually post mine in the dead of night. I don't get up early to blog, and don't get off work til late in the evening. So I start late. It doesn't matter what time a blogger posts, I read when I get around to it :).

Followers are nice, but comments awesome. I read them, leave them, and cherish them. When I visit other sites, I browse the comments to see what is interesting. Can't read them all - except on my own blog.

........dhole

Hart Johnson said...

I think reading length preference for me is MEDIUM. I will read longer if it is AMUSING. I will bookmark longer if there is a lot of great info. I won't NOT READ short ones, but they are rarely my favorites. It makes me feel a little like... that's all? I post on the long side. My posts generally run 2-3 pages single spaced, which is probably 1000 words. (though part of that is pictures, I always try to break them up). I write them that long because without the rounds and rounds of editing, that is just how long it takes me to get to my point.

I blog daily, and read several others that do. I am fine though, FOLLOWING as long as it is REGULAR (at least weekly)--more than once a day and you're just showing off unless there is ginormous news.

I post EARLY. THAT is because I have about 1/3 of my readership NOT in the US. I like being still morning for the Europeans. At least 'same day' for the Aussies. I blog the night before and schedule for a 3am post 90% of the time. Then when I get up, I do my 'promoting thing' before work.

And I try to comment everywhere I go. I try to get to ALL my sidebar blogs in a week, but go more often to the frequent commenters. (I think you've got it all down perfectly, Alex--the timing, length, commenting... you're doing all of it right)

Ellie said...

I prefer posting in the am, but with summer vacation, company, and the sharing a computer with a teen; It is a challenge! It seems my routine is gone and I post whenever I get the chance. I also gave up caffeine and added it back, so now my blog posts tend to be late at night or the wee hours of the morn. I like posts not to be to long(I broke my rule, today). I like to blog every other day, but sometimes if I know an event or company is coming I will post early. I enjoy comments and hope to be better at following!
I am fine for awhile, then life gets in the way. Hoping Fall will, put me back on track. I try to post first to those who have commented, then on to my follower list. Great post! I like your style Alex!

Kelly Dexter said...

For me it's less about post length and more about post format. If the post is long but has paragraph breaks and whatnot, I have no problem reading the whole thing. When it becomes one epically long mega-paragraph without any sort of organization, I'm more likely to think twice.

Cheeseboy said...

I'm with Hart. Medium is generally best.

Now, I post about 5 times a week, but I am thinking of cutting down to every other day because my quality suffers if I don't. I sometimes feel like I am forcing things.

My preference for posting time is 5:00 in the evening.

I have noticed the quality of the post is a huge factor, but also if it is a post that resonates with people - something they can relate with.

Finally, I get a ton of comments if I have been making comments on other blogs during the week. People will comment out of guilt to return the favor.

Geof said...

This is an excellent topic, Alex. BTW - all this I am writing below is imho.

I think one of my flaws is that sometimes I write long posts, especially when I am doing reviews, but have been working on being more concise and on-point.

Posting? I try to do at least 4-5 a week, but will post short subjects like videos, trailers, etc. to break up the monotony.

Comments? I believe you have to pass around your blog karma and have good blogger etiquette by visiting and commenting on other sites. There are some bloggers who NEVER comment at all yet still get 20-25 comments for posting the littlest thing, albeit boring and uninteresting. So bringing in comments is touch and go depending on the person.

Cruella Collett said...

I agree with everything you said, though I don't always follow these rules. Especially length - I am terrible with that one. Sometimes it is just tricky to say what you want to say in less than 500 words!

As for comments, I try to visit as many blogs as possible, and I definitely see a link between how many comments I post and how many I get. I really want to read every post I comment on properly, though, so that I don't accidentally say something that makes the blogger go "huh?", so it's a time consuming activity.

brokenbiro said...

Hi Alex
I just stumbled across your blog from someone else's but have lost track of whom(!).

These are really interesting and useful questions - and answers! I won't repeat what's been said already but would like to add a couple of thoughts:

1. I post about 4 times a week but at different times, appreciating that readers are in different countries an have varying lifestyles. I've never noticed any correlation between time of day and number of comments...yet!

2. I love to have followers and visitors, of course, but am slightly irritated when people comment without having anything to say - as though they're 'clocking in' to be 'seen'. I like to respond to comments and 'great post' doesn't give me much to work with! I'd rather people just read and enjoyed, as I often do, without feeling they have to comment.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Nice to see others who also post every other day - thought I was skimping on the blogging with that routine.

You're welcome, Pat.

Laura, I try and stay on top of my blog reading.

Susan, we seem to have the same blogging rhythm.

Thanks, Hart. And your posts may be longer, but you cover several subjects and break it up with photos. It's always interesting, too.

Thanks, Ellie!

Guilting them into commenting, Cheeseboy? Twisted form of bribery!

Thanks, Geof - I do try!

Hi Brokenbrio - thanks for stopping by!!

Helen Ginger said...

I post every day, early in the morning. I haven't been counting my words, but I think most are okay. Posts tend to run long when they is a guest poster, though. You're right, shorter is better.

I like your pictures in the sidebar and am trying to think if I have any I could add to mine.

Helen

Beth Zimmerman said...

I'm glad you asked this. I found a lot of the responses interesting. Dez's comment makes me wonder if people consider me a blogroll spammer! I guess I'll see what happens as busier days enforce less blogging!

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Thanks, Helen! I'm sure some think it's overload, but I like the photos, awards and badges.

Theresa Milstein said...

250 words? I'm just getting started! I have to confess, mine are around 1k. I never find yours too long.

And I post when it's done, which could be morning, afternoon, or evening. I'd like to be consistent but I want it up as soon as it's finished!

I think the blogs that draw me in the most are coherent, warm, and informative in some way. Those are probably the ones that get the most comments.

You're already at 50, so you must be doing something right.

Monti said...

Good subject, Alex. I'm pretty new at this and am posting twice a week--that's my goal anyway. I post later in the day--not a good morning person. Don't know how long the posts are--maybe 250 words. Whenever possible I like to include a photo with my blog.

The great thing about blogging is the instant gratification. As a freelance writer for many years, I often waited several weeks for a feature article to appear in print.

Monti
MaryMontagueSikes

rogue evolent said...

Another interesting post Alex. Makes me think. For myself, having people (whether they're official "followers" or not) post comments, give me the "juice" to want to keep posting. You, single-handedly, have kept tROAD on the straight & narror :)
I need to post more comments here... I read all the time, learn all the time, but rarely comment (then again, the other 68 guys/gals who do always post, cover the slack)

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Teresa, thanks - I still have no idea what I'm doing right though.

Rogue, I forgive any perceived slack! And you have such a cool site. Just wait until you see my post on Sunday!

Stephen Tremp said...

I try to cap my blogs at around 300 words, but often go over. I post about foru times a week and like to post around 6:00 at night to get the evening then early morning bloggers.

I need to increase traffic. I've reached 30 comments on a few recent blogs, but need to increase it to 40 in the next few weeks. Gotta get out on Blogdom and visit more people.

Stephen Tremp

Chuck said...

Alex this was truly a great topic.

The length of individual comments above mimics some of the individual's post length. Just a an observation.

I don't mind reading longer posts, and I don't mind writing them.

I try to vary the length from post to post and as Pat says, "the topic will generally dictate the length".

I like to try and post at least 4 times a week but that does not always work out due to outside factors.

I try and comment on many of the blogs I read, but like this week where I got behind, I have not commented on every post of each blog I read.

Thanks for a provacative post!

welcome to my world of poetry said...

Hi Alex I can't recieve your latest post "Everything But The Kitchem Sink" I tried last night alsog again this morning.

Yvonne.

Will Burke said...

Legnth: under 500 is best, I shoot for 350.
Frequency: I do 2-3x a week, but there's only one I ignore, since he gets on twice a week to pu up 3-4 individual posts about each art piece he does, then doesn't participate in the community.
When: I mostly read AM posters, 'cause that's when I get the time here.
Comments. Questions help, as does community involvement. Wish I had time to read all your comments, but I've got to go to work:)

ediFanoB said...

To be honest I don't know what works best.

Posting Length-

I don't count words. I write what I like and what I have to say.

Posting Frequency-
Normally I post twice per week - On Saturday a weekly roundup and on Sunday a review. In case I find time within the week I post more

Posting Time-

That depends from which country you post. For example I live in Germany and there is a time difference to US and other countries.
From my timezone point of view I prefer to post in the evening - when I write posts in advance I pefer to post in the morning.

Comments-
Of course I like to get comments. I don't get many comments. But I know from my stats how many people visit my blog. And I lot of people don't like to leave comments - except for giveaways!
As far as I can see worldwide giveaways increase the number of followers.

My first worldwide giveaway is still running. So go to Edi's Giveaway: The Affinity Bridge by George Mann and take part....

Anyway I try to comment on other blogs several times per week and that helps tospread word about you and your own blog

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Stephen, commenting obviously helps, as I comment on about 100 blogs a day and get 50 comments on average.

Chuck, I can't keep up with all of them, either.

Will, I know what you mean by posters who never comment.

Edi, if the visitor count is high, then that's good!

L. Diane Wolfe said...

I hit somewhere between 500-1000 words and post four days a week. Commenting definitely brings in the traffic. You seem to excel at this without being a blogslut and doing it just for promotions' sake.

Claire Dawn said...

Length- 500 is great. For longer posts, leaving lots of white space and using section headings can help.

Frequency- Not more than once a day, not less than once a week. I like bloggers who keep you informed as to how they'll be posting, rather than posting sporadically.

Of course, if you have big news, you don't need to wait til tomorrow to share. And if you're travelling, you don't need to log in. Just warn your readers in advance.

Time of day- I'm in Japan, so I'm light years ahead of all y'all. I post at night here and it's morning in the West. I can't say that posting time of other's blogs affects me, though.

Comments- A blogger buddy posted that there isn't a correlation between number of readers and number of comments. Many people only comment when they feel particularly moved or when there's a request for feedback. She uses google analytics to track her blog, and her most commented post isn't even in the top ten of her most-read posts.

Glynis said...

I used to post daily, but it got too much for me when editing. I do it as and when I feel I have something to share, about x4 weekly.
I live in Cyprus, so 2 hours ahead of UK and hours out from the rest of the world. I post in the morning and my UK friends comment, then I notice about 4pm my US and Canadian friends wake up and comment.
The times do not affect my blogging, they actually make it easier to handle.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Claire, that's interesting about the comments. I'll have to check mine.

Glynis, we're just late sleepers here in the US, what can I tell you?

Jamie Gibbs said...

The main problem I get as UK blogger is that I need to keep in mind the time difference, since most readers are in the US. My posts end up being made in the evening, since the US early morning posting time is right in the middle of my work day, hehe.

As for post length and frequency, I think I do a double whammy of bad in posting longer than I should and less frequently than i should too. That needs to change, methinks.

Thanks for bringing these points to light, Alex!