Building an Active Blog Community

There are two major components that create a successful blog: your content and your audience. Building relationships with your audience online and offline are essential.

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Things to Focus On

  • Facilitate connections with your audience
    • Respond to as many comments as you can. It will make your audience feel important.
      Treat online connections just as you would treat face-to-face interactions.
  • Create Community Focused Projects
    • PostSecret is an extremely successful community-based blog that shares anonymous secrets every Sunday. The blog is an “ongoing community art project where people mail their secrets anonymously on one side of a postcard” (PostSecret).
      The blog is so successful because Warren allows anybody to contribute and the audience emotionally connects with other readers because of the secrets shared.

    Here are some of examples of the postcards posted on PostSecret

    A postcard currently featured on PostSecret

    A postcard currently featured on PostSecret

    A postcard currently featured on PostSecret

    A postcard currently featured on PostSecret

  • Ask Your Community Questions
    • Use different types of social media (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc.) to reach more people. By using more than one form of communication, your audience will interact with you and other members of the community you are trying to create.
  • Be consistent with your content
    • Another reason why PostSecret is one of the most popular blogs out there is because the content is the same each week. Although the secrets change week by week, similar issues and secrets are posted. The audience knows exactly what to expect each week.
  • Face-to-face interactions
    • Though a majority of blog communities interact over the web, considering meeting your audience in person. This gives your readers the opportunity to meet the person behind the blog which will most likely result in the continuation of their support.
      PostSecret’s Frank Warren travels around the world promoting PostSecret and encouraging members of the audience to share their secrets. It’s not uncommon if his appearances are sold out. Opportunities like meet-ups are crucial for your audience; they are able to meet other people who share a similar interest. After meet-ups, members of the community are more likely to tell other people about their experience, which will hopefully result in a larger audience for you.
  • Subscription Access
      After each post you publish, always include a forum for your readers to fill out so they can subscribe to your blog. The subscription will remind them to read your content if they’ve gotten busy and forgot.

    Learn more about Frank Warren and PostSecret below:

    Resources

    The PostSecret Blog
    Freakonomics Interview with Frank Warren
    The PostSecret Facebook
    Frank Warren’s TED Talk
    Building Active Blog Communities
    Community Picture

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