Thursday, April 19, 2018

Blog Challenge 9: Join Up, Build Up

This post is part of my ongoing series based upon the eBook 31 Days to Build a Better Blog. To read all of my other posts on the subject, check out the 31DBBB category. For more on the book itself, visit ProBlogger.

Today’s reading in 31 Days to Build a Better Blog focuses on the value of forums in building your audience.

I belong to one forum that I participate in semi-regularly. That particular forum, called, is all about The Price is Right. “Golden Road,” in case you’ve somehow managed to miss the show during the past 40 years, is one of the pricing games.

Since the show itself has taken a direction I’m not a fan of in the past few years since Bob Barker retired, I’m not nearly as much of a fan of the show. The forum is, at times, a constant battleground between fans of the “old” way and the “new” way, i.e., Barker’s way vs. new host Drew Carey’s way.

But what I have noticed is that I will get a hit once in a while from that site. Predictably, the posts on my blog that generally get the most notice from people coming from that site are posts that are about The Price is Right or about game shows in general.

That certainly backs up the notion that joining a forum can get your blog additional traffic.

Since that forum does deliver traffic, albeit light and only sporadically, one might suggest that I should do more posts about The Price is Right.

If I were interested solely in building up numbers, and not remotely interested in actual content, I might write a post a week about the show.

But I’m not interested solely in numbers. And frankly, I don’t have a great deal to say about that particular show these days. When I do, I write about it and hope that people at that forum will notice. I might even adjust the link in the signature that accompanies every comment I make on that forum to reflect the fact that there’s a new post to read.

The thing about forums, though, that one should definitely watch for is that it’s not a fast process. You have to post comments and be part of discussions there regularly before anyone begins to familiarize themselves with your username. It takes even longer before they begin to regard you as an authority on much of anything. I’ve been part of that site for about six or seven years now, as I recall. That’s a long time, and even after all these years, it still doesn’t deliver a great deal of numbers.

So the challenge is to find topics that you do write about the most often, then join forums that are dedicated to those topics. My “niche,” or at least, the closest thing I have to one, is about “common sense.”

Unfortunately, a search for forums dedicated to “common sense” link me up with one-sided political discussions.

I can’t imagine why anyone would want that.

If you do have a more narrowly-defined niche, then a forum might well be worth your consideration and your time.

Just remember: to see rewards from that community, you have to be committed to being part of it.

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Patrick is a Christian with more than 26 years experience in professional writing, producing and marketing. His professional background also includes social media, reporting for broadcast television and the web, directing, videography and photography. He enjoys getting to know people over coffee and spending time with his dog.