Sending out an SOS

Alright, I’m going to have to bite the bullet and ask for some help and feedback here.

It should be Save Our Blog, but SOB has an entirely different meaning
It should be Save Our Blog, but SOB has an entirely different meaning

I’ve had this blog running for nine and a half months now, with a total of 42 posts.  I average a little over a hundred page views a month, once you toss out the time I was inactive with a new baby.  If I’m lucky, I’ll get a dozen or so hits on a post.  But I also have apparent duds that may get 0-1 page views.  So far as I know, I’m not on anyone else’s blogroll.

I’ve had 32 comments in that time period, but probably a half dozen of those are my responses or pinbacks, and probably a good half of the rest are from Ysharros, bless her heart.  And that’s probably what brings me to this point.  I never expected to be at the level of Genda getting invites to SOE headquarters for game releases or The Ancient Gaming Noob with his corporate partners.  But I was hoping that my posts would generate…discussion?  Comment?  Critique?  And some have, but very very few.

Last week I changed up my style, and did series of shorter posts that were spaced a little closer together, but I ended up, either through bad choices or bad luck, getting significantly fewer pages views when I did that.  I also posted at a variety of times, trying to see if there was a better altnerative to the lunchtime postings I was making – again, no dice.

So I come to you, loyal readers, all 10 (5? 2?) of you.  What options do I have?  Is there anything else I can be doing?  What feedback cane you give, both on writing styles and general blog management?  And honestly, should I just hang up my hat?

As a final word, I do have one ace up my sleeve I could pull.  It requires me revealing some personal information, but not really at a dangerous level I don’t think.  More to the point it’s information that could be polarizing and yet be a good hook for readers.  Essentially, it would answer the question of “why should you read this blog? what makes this blog different?”  Is that what I’m lacking and need to give this place a shot in the arm?

Anyway, your feedback is appreciated always, and for you who read regularly, thank you for the time you spend here.

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8 thoughts on “Sending out an SOS

  1. Hey, hzero. According to Google Reader 5 people subscribe to your blog including me. 🙂

    I wrote a piece a while back for the Eve Tribune titled “How to write an eve blog” and here is the link:
    http://www.eve-tribune.com/index.php?no=3_26&page=3

    It might give you some ideas. The hardest part of blogging is definitely building up a readership. A quick review of your recent posts show some decent writing quality so your main problem appears to be how to drive traffic here.

    One of the best ways to get people to come around is to write a guide on something that people can use and then direct them too it. Ship reviews / setup guides, esoteric game mechanics, etc.

    Also, just keep plugging away and commenting on other people’s posts. I know I always click on a person I don’t know who comments on my posts and if they have a decent blog I add it to the reader.

    Make sure you are on the aggregate sites like the OPML download Galen maintains and Eve-places and Eve Bloggers website. If not, get on there!
    http://www.evebloggers.com/

    Get in on the Blog Banter ever month to! Don’t have to be a Blog Pack member to get a link in there.

    If you want to talk more, email me. kkodachi@gmail.com

  2. Being lucky helps some. My second or third post had a link to something Brent at VirginWorlds wrote and he put me on the list of “MMO Bloggers” on his site.

    Small things can help. I found that making FeedBurner your RSS feed standard can boost you a bit because they have a notification service that updates feed following services about your recent posts.

    As KK said, a guide to something, especially in EVE Online, can give you a boost. One of my ongoing most read pieces is “How To Find An Agent in EVE Online.”

    And if all else fails, say something inflammatory about Tobold so that he writes a response post with a link to your site. Few things drive traffic like a direct link in a Tobold post.

    I see I am on your blogroll, so I’ll make sure you’re on the linking sites entry for my month in review. That should be good for an even dozen page views.

    Otherwise… well… you can display your ignorance like I do on a regular basis… or you can try to be controversial like some bloggers I could mention.

  3. Oh man, I can’t believe you’re not on my blogroll — this is where you should have been hitting me over the head in the foofery posts! The omission is purely accidental — though I doubt I’d bring you much traffic — and has been remedied. (I’m one of your subscribers, by the way! :D)

    As for traffic… the above advice is good. I don’t really know or care — I write my stuff and would write it anyway, so if a few people read it I’m happy enough.

    Getting linked to by others seems to be one of the major means of gaining visibility. In my case, being mentioned in the WAR Herald didn’t hurt, though the passing vultures soon moved on. 😉

    As for the lack of commenting… I haven’t been anywhere much lately. RL is a little overwhelming, as is probably relatively evident since my own posting has dropped considerably.

  4. HarbingerZero

    @ All: Thanks for the kind words and advice. It tickles me pink that people who I’ve followed and admired for so long are willing to take some time to help me out.

    @ Kirith: Thanks for the article and the tips. I thought one had to blog EVE exlusively to apply for eve bloggers, but this doesn’t seem to be the case. I might hit you up with some questions a little later on. Also, I was holding my breath on your corps move. Thank goodness your not in my region, I have to dodge enough carriers in the system I live in that I didn’t want one more coming to town!

    @ Wilhelm aka TAGN: Feeds are a blind spot in my internetz knowledge so I’ll have to look into that more. I had heard Tobold’s name but nothing more. I guess I’ll go check him out, but – well its one thing to disagree with a blog I’m a regular reader of, and its another to cross swords for publicity’s sake. I’m more the display ignorance than stir controversy guy. (-: But mostly I’m honest discussion guy. It may be that that doesn’t sell well, and thats ok.

    @ Ysharros – You should be the last one worrying about whether or not your commenting here, since you do it so often! RL is RL, I’ll be out of town 3 weeks next month, so I’ll probably be slow then myself. My biggest spikes were also prior to the WAR launch, especially with all the beta writing I did. And I enjoy writing anyway, its just part of who I am, but apparently I’m not totally content right now. (-:

  5. I was kidding to a certain degree about annoying Tobold. I am not that type of blogger either and have only managed to annoy him in the comments area of his blog, and even that was a mis-understanding. But he has quite a following, so if he posts a link to your site in a post (he doesn’t do the blogroll thing) that can be worth a few hundred visits.

    Also, since you are blogging with WordPress, effective use of categories and tags can bring people to your page. I notice, for example, you use the EVE tag for your EVE Online posts. That tends to be a tag used for a variety of things. I would recommend using the tag/category EVE Online which points to posts exclusively about the game.

    RSS is a double edged sword. It makes it easier for people to read your posts, but allows them to read without visiting your site and popping your pageview count. FeedBurner nicely keeps those stats so you can get a feel for how many people are reading via RSS. WordPress tries to do that as well, but they do not do it as well in my opinion.

  6. Hey there, here it is a year later and you have at least one more follower. These are good ideas I had not thought of as I try to increase my own readership. Blogging is a bit of vanity isn’t it? “Hey read my stuff, it’s important!”

    1. Heh, yeah, it is a personal vanity press in some sense for everyone. For me, its just a fun way to (hopefully) generate some MMO related discussion somewhere other than disease ridden official forums.

      Speaking of blogging ideas and readership – I’m doing my part as these others did for me by linking you in on the main page. (-:

  7. Pingback: Day Nine: Blog/Website Favorites | Harbinger Zero

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