Getting Blog Followers Vs. Getting Blog Readers

This post is no judgment on how people run their blog nor is it a post to say what is right or wrong. Rather, it is some thoughts that I’ve been thinking on for some time.There isn’t one right or wrong way to blog. I’m not going to get into anything about if follower counts matter, follower inflation, the right way to gain followers etc. etc. That’s neither here nor there for this discussion. You do what you do. The blogging police is not all up in this post. Rather, I’m going to explore what I feel the difference between getting blog followers and readers is.

Like many blogging communities, there’s always chatter around Twitter and the blogosphere about followers. There are follower hops, giveaways for reaching a certain follower count and many of us are silently (and not so silently) counting follower widgets and Feedburner subscribers. The idea of our followers, subscribers and readers is a big part of our blogging experience in many ways.

For myself, as I’ve waded through the blogging waters, I’ve found that there is a big difference between getting blog followers and getting blog readers and thus varying degrees of importance in my eyes. Now obviously a good chunk of our followers ARE in fact readers. But I’m talking about the times when follower counts are made to be seen as THE “worth” and tell-all of the blog.

It’s easy to get blog followers but definitely takes a lot more effort to get and keep blog readers.I can’t tell you how many blogs I “followed” but have never been back to. It’s a really easy, non-committal thing to do. Readers on the other hand…they come back. They are loyal. They are interacting whether it be via comments, Twitter or email. They respond. They start discussions or keep them going. They make MY reading and bookish experience all the more better. I learn new things from my readers and I honestly cherish every single comment and thought that my readers share with me. They are my GO TO people. My readers aren’t my SOLE reason for blogging but it sure would get old to me if nobody was reading. i might as well just write my thoughts about books in a locked diary.

I consider my follower count as nothing more than a useful measure FOR MYSELF because I know it IS in fact a true indicator of how my blog is growing as I don’t do things intentionally to get followers….followers for the SAKE of the numbers that is. I mean, yes, I want more followers if it means I have more readers…but to me, quality of the follower always trumps the quantity.

I blog for my readers and not for a follower number. When I see blogs that have thousands of followers yet they literally only get 1 or 2 comments on EVERY post, I have to wonder how fulfilling that is? What’s the goal for them in blogging? To have a lot of followers? At what point does that get boring when nobody is reading or responding? I mean, as I’ve said before, getting blog comments is that affirmation that are readers our there and I find that to be satisfying. Obviously I’m not them so I don’t know what makes them tick..this is just me trying to understand.

Now I’m not saying in ANY way that followers or stats or anything aren’t good. I get that they are a way to measure one’s progress and growth as a blogger (if that is something you care about) and give us something to feel good about when we spend time doing it. But for me, there is a big difference between followers and readers and I choose to focus on my readers and not my numbers…because there is fulfillment in that for me which might not be the same for others.

The days I feel the most alive and gung ho about blogging is when I have genuine interaction on my blog or when people seek me out on Twitter to respond to something on my blog. It honestly makes me so giddy. I love genuine comments on my blog and I love stepping off my blog to BE an active reader…despite the fact that wedding planning has made me fall behind!

When I’m perusing blogs, I’m more likely to hit the follow button or add you to my RSS feed if I see a slew of comments interacting with you about something you posted…even if you only have 30 blog followers. I can tell you’ve got something that readers want..and I want to get that from your blog too! If I got onto a blog with thousands of followers and I’m hearing crickets…I’m likely to move on.

EDIT: Thanks to a great comment pointing out something in the paragraph right before this I’d like to clarify. This isn’t the end all of how I “judge” a blog firstly. It’s just a statement that in general..that’s what I’d do. Also, when I am on a blog and deciding to follow it…I don’t judge it based on one post. I actually tend to go back a page or two in older posts and just see the variety of their posts. I see on my own blog that some posts are just not as popular compared to others..so I’d never base my following a blog on one post.

What about you…do you see a difference between getting readers and followers or do you think I’m just splitting hairs? I’d love to know!

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About Jamie

Jamie is a 30 year old married lady who is in denial that she's actually that old. When she's not reading you can find her doing Pilates followed by eating ice cream, listening to music with oversized headphones and having adventures with her husband and dog.

Comments

  1. Ashley @ Book Labyrinth says:

    No, I completely agree. Sure follower numbers matter to an extent (so many different things you could talk about in regards to that), but I'm far more interested in the people reading my posts. Sometimes I see people who have been around only for a few months and have like 800 followers while I've been around for more than a year and have 330, and of course it upsets me at times. I wonder why one person gets so much attention while others don't. But I know a lot of times (and not always, of course) those blogs are getting a zillion followers from blog hops and giveaways. Would I like more followers? Sure. Numbers matter to me. It's a pride thing, and a sense of accomplishment. But I'd rather see people commenting and reading consistently than big numbers with zero feedback. In the end I'm happy with sitting back and writing consistent reviews and gaining followers slowly when I know they're people who actually care what I have to say.

  2. I believe we talked about this on Twitter not too long ago. 🙂

    I'm going to have to agree as well. As a blogger, I don't enjoy being sought out by other bloggers to follow their blogs. So why would I want to do that to anyone else? I wouldn't. So I don't. I'm content with the number of followers I have; the numbers may fluctuate, but the same people continually comment, and that's what lets me know that I'm still doing something right.

  3. Amanda @ On a Book Bender says:

    This is everything I've thought but not bothered to put into words (so thank you). Since I'm on WP and can't have GFC, I think I have always focused on building relationships with other bloggers that lead to quality readers, even if I have fewer followers than other blogs that have been around the same amount of time. I blog because I love books and I love to talk about books, and how can I talk about books without having people interact with me as well?

    I think you are spot on. You can definitely follow without reading. To me, the number of followers feel like a disconnected and silent number. Readers who interact and comment, like Alissa said, lets me know I'm doing something right.

  4. I can see where it is important to some to have a large GFC count, I can only imagine it would help you get quality ARCs to review and it is something you can turn around and let the publishers know. But I can also see the validity of wanting to know that all of these people that say they are followers are actually reading your blog. I am not sure how you ensure that. I think you have to take those that respond and interact to your posts and cherish them. But also recognize not all of your followers are going to be like that, and find a comfort in that.

  5. Jasmine Rose says:

    Comments are definitely what make it for me. At this moment I have 52 followers, but a very small handful actually comment on a regular/semi-regular basis. It's kind of disheartening to only get a smattering of comments, but when I do, they seriously make my day. I love the people that I know by name now because they come back so often to comment :]

  6. "When I'm perusing blogs, I'm more likely to hit the follow button or add you to my RSS feed if I see a slew of comments interacting with you about something you posted…even if you only have 30 blog followers. I can tell you've got something that readers want..and I want to get that from your blog too! If I got onto a blog with thousands of followers and I'm hearing crickets…I'm likely to move on."

    this is an interesting comment. To expand on it a bit-I can predict to some extent that if I do a post on To Kill a Mocking Bird I will get many more comments than I if I do a post on one of my passions, older South Asian short stories. Does that mean that one post is better than the other?-I really do not think you can just in a blanket way judge a blog by the quantity of comments on a post-if you post on popular well know works you will generally get more comments than if you post on obscure to most works. So I sort of think your way of judging blogs is a bit unfair. I love it when people comment on my posts but I try to understand why some of my posts get a lot more comments than others but I do not change what I blog on just to get comments- I try to get both more readers and more followers-it brings me pleasure and satisfaction to grow my blog as best I can while being true to my passions.

  7. I agree with you, I like it more to get a comment then a new follower. Followers, may follow you but if they really read what you write is a big difference!

  8. Jessica ( frellathon ) says:

    So true. I'd love a ton more followers but what I really want is more commenters more interaction with my readers. I'd prefer that over a high follower count. I used to be all over how many followers I have now I just focus on blogging and enjoying myself. Numbers are just that and don't do all the talking.

  9. Totally hearing you on this one. When I started my blog about… errr… *whispers* just over 2 weeks ago *cough* I was getting all obsessed with that follower count. And then I sat down about a day or two later after hitting the 10 mark and thought, actually, I prefer comments – interacting with other people is so much better, and you do get to learn more about books that way, which is a huge part of the reason why I started blogging about books in the first place. So I'm quite pleased that I get roughly 3-10 comments per post. Considering I have a following of 25, that's a good enough ratio. Well, or so I think!

    Slightly off tangent, but with regards to following… I tend to be picky with the blogs that I do follow. Their writing has to be substantial. None of the "you should read this book because it's good. because I liked it. the end." kind of reviews or posts! But that's just me. 🙂

  10. I'm not a "professional" blogger, I actually rarely update these days and do it for the fun of it, but I've always felt that it's way more important to have even a loyal reader than 10 followers who don't comment at all. In the end it's seeing just one person actively reading my stuff that makes my day.

  11. Ashley — YES! To everything you said! Esp with writing consistent reviews and posts! I'm much happier with that.

    Alissa — For sure! And yes…I think we did talk about this! 🙂

    Amanda – "I blog because I love books and I love to talk about books, and how can I talk about books without having people interact with me as well? " YES TO THIS!

    Lisa — Yeah, I mean it IS hard not to care sometimes because of ARCS especially when some pubs (read PENGUIN) seem to only care about that. However, it seems like other pubs actually do take into account traffic, quality content, passion and comments etc.

    Jasmine — YEs! I love that feeling of recognizing the same people who comment by their name or profile pic!

    Mel– Thanks for responding! You make a valid point and I guess I should have clarified a little. I don't judge a blog based on one post. I tend to look around a bit before I follow a blog so I can see a variety of posts. I typically go back a page or two also. I TOTALLY understand and see it in my own blogging life that some posts are just going to not be as interesting to people. For example, my review on The House of Tomorrow is a backlisted title and isn't as popular as some of the other books I've read and only got 2 comments. If one judged my blog on that, it wouldn't seem very promising but if you looked around you'd notice I do get interaction on other things. Also, that isn't the end all of HOW I judge a blog. I've followed brand new blogs with no comments because I saw something great in what they wrote 🙂 Thank you for pointing this out so I could further elaborate on it. I really appreciate you sharing your concerns!

    Susanne — Agreed! It really is a big difference to me. Even if they just seek me out on Twitter to respond. I just love the interaction.

    Toni — YAY! Welcome to blogging! 🙂 I'd say that is an EXCELLENT ratio!!

    Mona – I so agree! I'd definitely rather 1 active reader than 10 followers who never comment. What's the point in that?

  12. Samual @ Books For All Seasons says:

    I would definitely prefer more readers over followers. Readers are part of the book community, well, besides bloggers, of course. Without readers, some of us may think there's no reason to blog. Well, gaining readers do take time and sometimes depend on whether or not your posts are worth reading, based on how informative they are. Sure, the number of followers is important. But ask yourself, if there's no one following you, does it mean you don't blog at all? Does it mean that blogging is just for gaining followers and not for the fun of it? I blog because I like books and want to share my passion for reading to other people. I want to interact with other people, so we can find books we would someday be able to comment and blog about it. Blogging has become part of my family, and that is very important to me, just like my family! I can't live without blogging, and I will keep blogging forever, even no one follows me! Commenting on others' bloggers are very crucial too. I like doing that because I can discover new books and more.

    Sam

  13. Beachreader says:

    I don't have a lot of followers – 13 I think – but I do have blogging friendships with other bloggers that I follow. I don't facebook, twitter and my blog is not public on the web. I don't expect high followers – that isn't my goal.
    I agree completely that I would rather know people read my blog than have high follower numbers.
    Thank you for a thought provoking write-up.

  14. Amy @ bookgoonie says:

    I agree 100% with Book Bender. At first I was disappointed because I felt WP may have handicapped me, but now I just don't worry about it. I do it because I like it. I'll find the people that like it too. I understand the whole GFC thing, but sometimes it is a real turn off when I blog hop around.

  15. Jacinda (The Reading Housewives) says:

    "When I see blogs that have thousands of followers yet they literally only get 1 or 2 comments on EVERY post, I have to wonder how fulfilling that is? What's the goal for them in blogging? To have a lot of followers? At what point does that get boring when nobody is reading or responding?"-I've thought this exact same thing. Some people post and never interact with their readers. It is like they post-read-post-read…they never chat, interact, comment, tweet(unless it's about their posts)…

    It is hard not to pay attention to followers when publishers say they want that information from you. I personally don't have publisher contacts(technically I might have 1 or 2 small pub contacts) so I don't email publishers in regards to review copies, but I know on Netgalley I need them. My blog is pretty small, so follower count hopefully doesn't make that big of a difference since I do get approved.

    I will say that after gaining bunches of followers at one time once, I did actually get a couple of people who started commenting somewhat regularly which actually shocked me.

    I talk about this often, but I'll do it again. Before I blogged, I read and commented, from what other bloggers tell me, kind of a lot. It is a rare day(if ever) when I get actual book readers who comment. I wonder why that is…kind of off topic. But maybe that is something to think about.

  16. I couldn't agree more- I feel like lots of bloggers get followers by making them follow to enter giveaways and things, and I just think that those people are never going to come back, so what's the point? I did used to enthusiastically follow when I started blogging, but then a few months ago I cleared out the ones I really never read, and now reading other blogs is so much more enjoyable because they're the ones I really like. So yay to actual readers instead of just followers 🙂

  17. Samuel — I totally agree! I can't imagine just gaining followers is a reason to blog. I'd love for someone who has that mentality to explain it to me because in my mind I honestly cannot find fulfillment in that. I would have quit blogging long ago.

    Beachreader – I love that you bring up "that high followers isn't your goal"…I think that is a lot of times what it comes down to. What are people's goals in blogging? To keep a written record of what they read? To talk about books? To get free books (which HELLO..there is a library lol)? To get popularity and fame? Etc. etc. Everyone has their own goals in blogging and what they get out of it! Thanks for the thought-provoking comment 🙂

    Amy — It would be so interesting to see what blogging would be like without any way to publically see how many "followers" someone has. I wonder how it would change it. I wonder how publishers would approach how they decide which blogs to approve for ARCS. I think it makes it super competitive sometimes. I know I got caught up in that my first month of blogging as most newbies do I'm sure. Now I'm just so chill about blogging. It's kinda like walking into your favorite coffee shop or bar and feeling at home. It's like Cheers! *starts singing the Cheers theme song* Anyways, I have thought about getting rid of the followers widget but I think I keep it there because I know it is an easy way for someone to subscribe bc some don't use Google Reader or any other feed. I like to have many ways for a reader to have my blog easily accessible which is why I have the widget, the ability to add to your feed, email, Twitter, Facebook, etc. Thanks for your awesome comment! 🙂

    Jacinda — I know exactly what you are talking about! I'm guilty of doing it when I'm SUPER busy..but even then I feel like I'm on Twitter replying to comments or thoughts because I feel like when I get to busy to comment back that I don't quite get what I did out of other discussions or reviews I've done. I can't imagine not interacting. Especially on Twitter. It's like my lifeline lol. And I agree..I think this drive towards having tons of followers is because of the standards that pubs set up for what qualifies you for approval of ARCS. And I totally think it's great when followers do become readers…I've had some giveaways (without requiring followers or extra entries) where I've gained some actually readers. It totally is a good way for some REAL readers to find your blog! OMG and yes!1 You totally did comment a lot before you blogged! I remember! And I agree..there is quite a lack of non-bloggers commenting. I actually had a discussion that did talk about this and got a few non-bloggers to reply. http://www.perpetualpageturner.com/2011/02/who-are-book-bloggers-catering-to.html

    As always, thank you Jacinda for your awesome comment. You are probably one of the best commenters ever..for serious!

  18. Ginger @ GReads! says:

    I have a good group of consistent "readers" on my blog who come back daily to comment on what I have to say. I look forward to reading those comments. Though my follower count may be high, I don't think THAT many people are reading what I have to say. Like you said, someone may have come along & clicked "follow" and never thought to come back again.

    I started TGIF on my blog to get away from the hops & the idea of "gaining followers". I just wanted a fun Friday feature that asked people a question. I love learning more about others, so I thought TGIF would be an awesome opportunity for other bloggers to share a bit more about themselves. Yes, it's gotten me more followers.. but I've noticed, these new followers are consistent & I've also found new blogs to read in the process. There is no requirement to "follow back". My intentions were to create a fun, easy atmosphere for people to come back to each Friday. No pressure.

  19. G- It really is funny the ratio of followers that translates into comments. I think even the most conversational of blogs have that same ratio issue. And I agree..that is how I feel about Top Ten Tuesday. We do get followers from it but a lot of them I do see come back and some only come back on Tuesdays..which is fine with me. It's always a great way to connect to new people through actual content based memes. I find new followers all the time and I find that participating on this blog I find readers who have found me via TTT who I start to recognize around here from comments! Thanks for your comment! 🙂

  20. I wish people would comment on my posts. I get one every once in a great while, and usually they are on Wedding Wednesday posts, and not reviews or anything. But I still write them, hoping people actually read them. I honestly have no idea if they do.

  21. Jen (Makeshift Bookmark) says:

    It's easy to get wrapped up in the follower business. I think my stuff is quality (but I may be a bit biased hahaha!) so it does get discouraging when I see blogs who have thousands of followers but post like 10 giveaways a month. Of course people are gonna follow you if you give stuff away. I can't tell you how many blogs I've followed simply from a giveaway. I haven't read the majority of them since then. But I have people who comment pretty regularly and THAT is rewarding. They keep coming back for one reason or another, so that makes this blogger smile.

    Probably 90% of the blogs I read come from people I've interacted with frequently on Twitter or if you've left a non-generic comment on one of my posts. There are so many blogs out there and honestly, if I've stumbled upon your Twitter profile and you're awesome, I'll follow you. If you've started a conversation with me and we click, I follow you. I seriously applaud bloggers who get out there and communicate with other bloggers and who aren't out there just like "OMG COME VISIT MY BLOG HERE'S MY LINK." I want to make rude gestures to those damn copy/paste bloggers who say something generic like "great review. If you want to read my review on the very same book, please visit my blog and follow me and here's the link: _________." That's just tacky. And does it actually work?

    Stepping off the soapbox now 🙂

  22. Jessica @ Books: A true story says:

    Thank you thank you for this post! It's easy as a new blogger to feel competitive about numbers. This makes me feel better about my blog and to remember that I just need to be myself and write the kind of things that I would want to read. What tips would you give a new blogger about getting readers instead of followers to their blogs?

  23. I totally agree…to me…the comments and the relationships are the best things ever…

    And as a relatively new blogger…it puts things into a proper place!!!

  24. Librarygal says:

    I agree, though I worry, because I don't get a ton of commenters…maybe things aren't as good as I thought?
    I'd love to have more comments…

  25. I don't even have a follower widget because it doesn't matter to me. I want readers, and readers who aren't bloggers. Over the four years I've had Bookalicious I have found that and that is what makes me happy, well that and my unique visitors per day 😉

  26. I go back and forth with my follower widget–sometimes I keep it on my blog, sometimes I don't. I notice that you currently don't have your widget showing (though I know you have in the past). I only have 129 followers. Some if this is because I don't follow ANY blogs–so for me to ask for followers seems hypocritical. Some of it is because I moved blogs and my old blog (though two years defunct) still has almost all of it's original followers. Not sure why.

    Anyway, it's just a number. And if I pop onto a blog with several hundred followers I'm going to assume that they either have a lot of giveaways, follow a lot of blogs themselves, or participate in hops. This is probably a bad assumption but in many cases it's true.

    Like you I find comments and interaction to be more meaningful. I feel continually blessed by the abundance of comments that I receive on my posts. And you know what, MOST of those comments do not come from people who have followed my blog (using the widget). Honestly, I'm not even sure who those people are and why they've followed.

    Active readers make my heart warm as well. And I've been bad at it lately as a new mommy, but try to be an active rather than a passive follower.

    And those people who say they want more comments? Leave more comments. Interact and form those relationships.

    Ooops. Longest comment ever…

  27. Wow, after this many comments I probably won't say anything new or different but I just wanted you to know I totally agree! I get obsessed with followers once in a while but what's the point of having hundreds of followers if non of them are reading? Now I feel bad too because I follow you but hardly ever read. It's so hard to keep up with everyone, though. 🙁

  28. JessiKay89 says:

    I couldn't agree with you more, Jamie! A perfect example of this is how I felt during/after my little blogging/reading slump that I had recently. Since I came back, I find myself getting more disappointed by lack of comments than by lack of new followers.

    Not only that, but I find myself unfollowing blogs not because I don't particularly enjoy them but because I never really read them. I find that I comment on other blogs more, and they're usually meaningful comments. So not only do I prefer to have readers instead of followers, but I also prefer to BE a reader instead of a follower. I mean, c'mon, the best part about blogging (besides reading) is getting to talk with fellow readers about books and even getting to know the bloggers behind the blogs on Twitter, FB, etc.

  29. I'm a relatively new blogger, but I don't think it's ever occurred to me to really think about my follower count. I mean, seeing the numbers does make me happy to a certain extent. But what I do love more than anything is seeing a comment left on one of my posts. I always make it a point to read through my comments and try to reply to every single one.

    So yes, in the long run, I too would prefer more readers than followers. I love the people I've been meeting and interacting with through the book blogging community – and hopefully, more new friends are in store in the future!

  30. As someone who doesn't have a blog (too lazy, they require way too much work) here's my piece for what it's worth :).

    I follow three blogs but I read more (prob about 16). I make it a point to visit these blogs pretty much on a daily basis because I'm interested in hearing what they have to say. I only actually comment on one blog. Yep one! Why? Mmmm, it's kind of silly but making that first step to comment is pretty hard (even though you really really want to voice your thoughts). The Blogger community is pretty tight and so as a non-blogger you feel like you hold little clout. There is no review or blog for us non-bloggers to link back to, so how do you know if i'm legit or well read.

    Now this may not be how bloggers actually think about us 'blog lurkers' 😉 but I think it pretty much works the same way as socially being thrown into a situation with a group of people who all know eachother but you don't know anyone. A shortfall on my part but the truth all the same :).

    Also, I never enter comps bcos they rarely post outside the US, so they definitely don't make a blog any more attractive to me.

    I'm sure there are heaps of readers and non-bloggers out there who would love to interact but it takes time to feel comfortable about doing it.

    After all this I don't really think I've made much of a point 🙂 other than reading is more important to me. And being a non-blogger makes interaction a little more difficult to enter into.

    Seeing all you guys say how much you want the interaction with readers, I'll have to brave-up and do it!

  31. thatcovergirl.com says:

    Like Amanda, I don't have a GFC widget. I have no idea how many people subscribe to my blog via RSS. And while I've (lazily) chosen to remain ignorant on a few platforms, my primary concern has always been content. Am I putting stuff out there that I myself would like to read? Am I writing in my own voice? Am I still happy to be blogging?

    I read blogs via Google Reader, and there aren't a ton of blogs that I'm subscribed to. But some of them that I comment on actually use systems where I get an email directly from the writer, and their response doesn't actually post to their site. Or sometimes I'll comment on a blog and they'll @reply me on Twitter with a comment back. Or sometimes I'll just get an email directly from a reader or blogger. So I can think of a few reasons why you may not see someone else's responses to their audience's comments on their blog. But like you, I LOVE seeing the interaction.

    I've always been a fan of the quality relationship. The one that develops over time, over mutual interests, one that grows and evolves. I sometimes wonder if other bloggers email their commenters personally asking for THEIR opinions on books. You won't win my readership and RSS subscription with your GFC #s or your contests. You'll win my readership with the quality of your writing, your insight and your personality.

    And when I started TCG, yes, there was a hope that people would interact with what I wrote. I had hoped there were some likeminded people who would find my content interesting and expand on my opinion. But from the perspective of a prospective commenter, I understand not wanting to constantly comment, "Hey, that's a cool cover. I like it too." And as someone who doesn't review books, it gets old saying, "Great review Blogger, I want to read this book yesterday!"

    Your measuring stick of GFC #'s v. commenters, however, is for The Perpetual Page-turner and TB&TB. If someone else wants to have a ton of contests a month, pimp those very same contests that require you to follow on Twitter, that's fine. You're stepping into an entirely different territory when you're questioning whether another blogger finds satisfaction in comments & GFC #'s. That's their business, and their blog. (You won't subscribe to them, and neither will I.)

    Some of your audience will be readers, some will be followers, some will actually comment, and you'll have a mix of all three categories from time to time. But I share the same opinion as you and when you say that the "quality of the follower always trumps the quantity."

  32. C – Thanks for your comment. I do want to clarify that I'm not questioning someone's level of satisfaction in a way that means I'm looking down on them..I'm honestly questioning it in a "do they find satisfaction in that?" Like I said above, I'm not them so I don't know. I can't feel satisfied by that for myself. I truly would LOVE for someone who blogs like that to explain to me so I can better understand because I can't because it's just never been for me. It's hard to find a place of understanding when I don't have anywhere to relate to…other than a month when I first started blogging getting hung up on the numbers. I was obsessed at first but that wore off when I honestly just didn't get any sort of joy or satisfaction after the initial thrill of it faded. I think I should be able to ask those questions of those people who don't share the same view as me. As though I might ask someone of a different religion or political belief why they believe what they do..more so out of a place of understanding. Because I think that two sides who have opposite viewpoints have a hard time coexisting when they don't have at least a little place of understanding. I'd like to be understand but at the end of the day I might not ever…so I choose not to follow them.

  33. I'll be responding to the rest of the comments tomorrow guys. I haven't been around much tonight but this has been a very awesome discussion! Thanks guys! 🙂

  34. Great topic and great post. I admit I like looking at the number of followers grow but, like you, only because that should mean more people who read my posts. I love comments too and getting lots totally makes my day. I like the feeling that I have friends out in the blogosphere, people who care what's going on with me and want to hear what I have to say. To me, that's what it's about.

  35. Mary @ BookSwarm says:

    I'm always looking for ways to interact more with my fellow readers — I'd be happy with a small number of passionate readers versus a huge pile of passive followers who just wait for the next contest. However, I know I have to be better at conversing with people who comment, like you are. It's hard work to grow an interactive blog but I love it! 🙂

  36. lisa [the nerd] says:

    "The days I feel the most alive and gung ho about blogging is when I have genuine interaction on my blog or when people seek me out on Twitter to respond to something on my blog. It honestly makes me so giddy."

    yes this. so much.

    thank you for the (yet another) insightful post!

  37. Trish (Just a YA Girl) says:

    For the longest time I was watching that follower count like a hawk. I felt that my worth as a reviewer and blogger was by how many people followed my blog. The comments made me smile, but numbers- now numbers were the it factor.

    I participated in Follow Friday every Friday and would stay up on Thursday night well past midnight to get more followers and be on the top of the list. I had fun with follow friday but it became a chore and after a while I felt that I wasn't really getting any kind of connection with the bloggers. All I got was "follow me! I'll follow you back!" That bothered me.

    So I stopped doing follow friday and I started to comment on twitter and to comment on other blogs. I participated in discussion posts like this one. In fact, I LOVE discussion posts. I like to hear what other people think not only on books but also on blogging.

    I have some tried and true readers of my blog that just make me laugh. I have friendships with other people around the globe who are as big as a book nerd as me and that makes me insanely happy. After spending my childhood and teens feeling like a huge dork its a big relief and a ton of fun to find other big dorks who like what I have to say and I like what they have to say.

    So yeah. I love my readers and my followers. I love to book blab. That's what book blogging is all about for me.

    (Wow, sorry for the huge comment. Love this post 🙂

  38. nea barabea says:

    I kind of think the same as you 🙂 I love when people leave a comment about a post I wrote. It makes me feel, that somehow what I write is important, and it doesn't mean something JUST to me. 🙂 Which makes me happy 🙂 As a student of Psychology I think is great that we can share thoughts, empathize and in the end LEARN a lot.

    But I should say alsp, that sometimes I read a post – and have no idea how to reply 😛 Or it's just great and I don't have nothing else to say or I don't know know well the subject and stuff like that. But that doesn't mean that I don't read what people write about ;))

    I like this post 😉

  39. A. Knight says:

    For me, it's the same. I admit, in the beginning I fell into the trap of seeking out followers all the time for the sake of having them. But I noticed while yes, I get excited about a new follower, that initial excitement drains away when I have no interaction with that person. In short, I like seeing the comments crop up so much more. That's what gets me all warm and fuzzy inside.

    – Asher (from Paranormal Indulgence)

  40. Bookish Hobbit says:

    I've been wanting to post on my own blog about this same subject, but I can't seem to get the proper words out to share my thoughts. I don't have a lot of followers, but I do have a few readers that keep coming back and leaving comments so it's nice to get feedback on what I'm posting.

  41. I understand your need for more readers than followers, and I agree that comments are fun to get. I like it myself when my blog gets comments.
    But, said as a mostly "lurker"….don't count us out. I use GoogleReader to follow EVERYTHING I'm interested in, because doing it any other way would take too much time. So, for most of my 500+ feedsources I guess I'm a follower as I don't comment much. It doesn't mean that I don't find it interesting, or have any opinions, just that I don't have time to comment on everything. If I feel strongly for something I'll click in and comment, but compared to how many blog posts I actually read I don't comment on many at all.
    Being followed is a compliment too. With so many good blogs in the world I don't follow any I don't find interesting.
    So, keep up being interesting 🙂

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