Since the sudden death on Friday of my friend Rick, I’ve been thinking about his family, his friends and the passion he had for connecting people. The post I wrote about him received a lot of views, a lot of shares and even earned this site some new fans on Facebook.
How proud Rick would be that even in an untimely death, he’d still be providing a way for people to connect!
It’s difficult sometimes when you write a blog, especially if you’ve written it for a long time, to kick yourself out of “writer mode” and put yourself into “reader mode” with respect to your own site.
Sure, I can go to any blog online and be a reader: I can immediately spot things that work for me and things that don’t. I can find things that I don’t like and resolve to make sure I never do them here.
But it’s a little harder to stay on your own blog and put yourself in someone else’s place. Our blog, after all, is like our child: we don’t see all of the ugly behavior and blemishes that other people do. It’s our “little darling,” and we’ll forgive a lot more of our own mistakes when the same mistake elsewhere would cause an immediate reaction.
When you’re talking about trying to increase the number of eyes on your blog, you must look for ways to put yourself in your readers’ place.
It occurred to me that churches have found an interesting way to make that initial contact with people who go online to have a look at what they offer: though the actual link titles vary from church to church, it usually looks something like, “New Here?”
What you’ll find on these pages are a quick write-up about what you can expect if you decide to attend the service: Is it traditional or contemporary in presentation? Is there a good children’s program? What are you expected to wear, a coat and tie or just a polo?
(Believe me, that last question is enough to change people’s minds about attending a church these days, but that’s for another post some day.)
Regardless of how much or how little detail a church goes into, they present a snapshot of who they are, what they’re about and what a visitor should expect when he shows up.
From the attendee’s standpoint, it’s a great idea. It extends a level of welcoming to people those inside the church have never met in the hopes of getting the chance to meet them and get to know them when they keep coming back.
Do we do this as bloggers? Usually not.
Maybe it’s time we tried.
After all, why wouldn’t we want to do anything we could to make people feel more welcome, more invited on your site?
I added a new page (you can see it in the second navbar in the header) called “New Here?” You can also see it here. On it, a newcomer will find a little information about what this blog is about and what to expect.
The dress code is always casual. That makes a great setting for friendly conversation.