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When you follow people on Twitter, you are doing more than just getting their tweets, you’re also sending them a note letting them know that you are interested in what they have to say. Ideally, a good percentage of them, after looking at your profile should feel the same way and return the follow.
Personally, I follow about 80% of the people who follow me. I view Twitter as a tool for conversations and, within reason, if someone is interested in hearing what I have to say, I want to listen to them as well.
However, as with most people, there are certain users I ignore or “snub” depending on your perspective. Though I’m grateful they took an interest in me, I’m not motivated to follow back. So for two weeks I kept track of the users I don’t follow and found the five most common reasons for me I don’t click the button.
Hopefully, this list will help you avoid some of the more common pitfalls when putting your Twitter account out there for the world to see.
5. No Icon
To most, this one should be pretty obvious. The first thing you should change on your Twitter account, if you are serious about it, is your icon. It doesn’t matter if it is your logo, your photo, a cartoon avatar or something else altogether, it should be anything other than the default Twitter “face”.
Even if you are a human being and a very active Twitter user, having the default icon looks unprofessional and makes others, including myself suspicious of your account. It only takes a few moments to add a new avatar and, since it is the first thing most people look at when they see your profile, it could be the most important change you make.
4. No Updates
Everyone has to start somewhere. So if you just started your account and I’m in the first batch of people you follow, that is a huge honor and I treat it as such.
However, leaving your Twitter account blank is poor form. You should at least have one or two tweets up before people start showing up. Also, if you haven’t tweeted in many days or months, not only does the follow seem suspicious, but it makes people much less likely to follow back as it indicates the account is abandoned.
If you wish to stop posting to your Twitter account or don’t want add any tweets of your own, that’s fine, just don’t expect many others to follow it, not that it would matter if they did.
3. The Numbers
Are you following 1000 people but only have 50 followers and 3 updates? If so, you’re probably a spammer or you at least look like one.
Numbers aren’t everything on Twitter but they do tell a tale about what your objective on the site is. If you are following more than a are following you, you’ree aggressively seeking out new people. There is nothing wrong with that until the proportions get completely out of whack. That tells people you are indiscriminately following others for attention and that makes them feel as if they’ve been spammed.
For me, there is no magic formula, but your numbers have to make sense for a human being, not a robot. Numbers are not the sole factor for most people, but if they don’t add up, don’t expect a lot of return follows.
2. Every Tweet is a Link
Everyone loves a few good links, but every Twitter stream needs a bit of variety. Making every single tweet a link to your latest post or, even worse, a promotion of some sort, is not. Or rather, is very annoying, especially when those Twitter users follow large numbers of people.
There are many Twitter accounts that I subscribe to that are nothing but link collections. However, I usually add them from their respective sites, not based upon them following me. If you use your Twitter account as a mini-RSS feed, that’s fine, just don’t expect people to follow back if they are not interested in the topic.
Personally, for most of those kinds of lists, I much prefer to get them in my RSS reader than my Twitter.
1. No @replies
Finally, as I said in the beginning, Twitter is about conversation. However, if you never @reply anyone for any reason, then, for you, Twitter is just a broadcast medium. It shows others that you aren’t reading your incoming tweets and, if you are, that you are not replying.
Though there is nothing wrong with broadcasting over Twitter, as with the link collections, it is important that the person be interested in the content by itself, not the conversation. Where one might be interested in talking with a realtor from Phoenix on Twitter, significantly fewer are going to be interested in a Twitter account about nothing but new housing listings in the region.
If you want to be followed broadly and use Twitter for conversation, it is important to let people know that you are listening and replying, something a healthy amount of @replies does very well.
Everyone who comes to Twitter is doing so with different goals in mind. To some, Twitter is just a broadcast medium, another way to get links and other content to the masses. To others, it is an RSS reader, a way to get news almost instantly. For those, being followed back may not be as important as it is for others.
There is no right or wrong answer when it comes to how to use Twitter, with perhaps the sole exception of obvious spammers.
However, for those who are interested in the dialog and need a balance in those who follow them back to make it happen, it is important to put your best foot forward on Twitter, make it clear that you are human and that you have an interest in hearing what others say, that you are active and that you care about your account.
If you do those things, most people, including myself, will be happy to follow you and talk with you. If you don’t, you may be left wondering why nobody is following you back.
1 Mental Block that Plagued Every Blogger Who Ever Blogged
Unless you are the Dalai Lama, you, at one time or another, became highly attached to a single blog post. I do not care who you are. 8 figure bloggers allowed their fears to attach them to a blog post. 8 cent bloggers allowed fear to attach them to blog posts.
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Now, the happiest, most successful bloggers face, hug and release this fear, for sure. But every blogger allowed fear to goad them to TRY LIKE HELL to drive traffic or profits to a single blog post. Or, being human and foolish, we allow fear-attachment to goad us into thinking that publishing a guest post on a blog with a million member community instantly leads to millions of dollars in blogging profits.
I recall being featured on Virgin Dot Com. Floored and humbled, for sure, but I was kinda detached about the feature, being more grounded in love and gratitude, and less fear-attached to any single platform, post or opportunity.
Happy, successful bloggers own this fear-attachment, let it go and adopt an abundance mentality. While most bloggers publish a single post and try to SQUEEZE as much out of it as possible, due to fear and attachment, I developed an abundance mentality and published 700 posts on Blogging Tips Dot Com. Heck; I have published 70 guest posts on the blog of Enstine Muki. For most bloggers, publishing 70 guest posts in total is quite a feat. I published 770 guest posts….between 2 blogs alone.
How am I so prolific?
I have largely conquered the fear of trying to GET as much traffic and profits as possible through any single blog post. I blog from an energy of love, fun and abundance, mainly, not fear, tension and scarcity. Few bloggers have mastered this mindset; only the happiest, most detached bloggers become so prolific, it makes our heads spin.
You Are Human
Of course you become a little attached to any one blog post. This is not a problem. But you need to be honest; the attachment is fear, and as the attachment and fear grow, you move from abundance and worldly success, to scarcity and blogging struggle.
A Good Mindset for Abundance Mentality
Alonzo Pichardo wisely advises to publish content, and let it do what it does. I agree. I never check metrics. Genuinely; if blogging is energy and if I am having fun, I reached my goal. Increasing success is imminent. I trust my feelings, not inanimate numbers on a screen. This is the abundance mentality in action.
Why this Mindset Prospers
I appear to be in a million places at once because I never attachment to any one post or video. Per Alonzo, I let the content do what it does. Not being shackled by stats, I keep creating, expand my presence, appear to be all over, and see greater success. Meanwhile, most fear-scarcity bloggers write a single post and waste their time and energy:
- trying to GET as much as possible through it, promoting it in thousands of places over the next 30 days
- obsessively checking post metrics every few minutes, or, every hour, after publishing the post
- panicking and bailing on proven strategies when a single post does not meet their expectations
All while this crowd makes all these mistakes, I am publishing hundreds of pieces of content over the same month, and also, meeting tons of new bloggers through genuine blog commenting, enjoying the ride.
Publish a post, promote it in a few spots, then move on to the next post, video or blog comment.
Develop an abundance mindset.
See increased blogging success and enjoy the ride.
5 Lessons Learned from Publishing 700 Posts on Blogging Tips
We have hit 700 posts on Blogging Tips together, guys.
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Thank you for reading, commenting and sharing these posts.
I took a few mini vacations from writing but published 1 guest post daily on this rocking site for many months on end. Helping you has been fun, freeing and fulfilling. Here is to the next 700 blog posts.
I learned a few clear blogging lessons during this guest posting run. Rather than call myself “The Cal Ripken of Guest Posting” – feel free to use that – I reckon we’ll dive into the success tips.
1: Avoid Setting Goals
I never could have written 700 posts if I TRIED to write 700 posts. Sounds quite impossible. But holding an intent to help people blog goaded me to show up daily, for writing and publishing. Blogging is simple but highly uncomfortable sometimes. Focus on the process, not goals or outcomes, to have fun helping people, to detach from outcomes and to become highly prolific.
2: Follow Your Fun
I have fun blogging about blogging. I make room for fun daily. 700 posts later, I am just getting started.
Follow your fun. Make work, the reward. All else will feel like extra, meaning post frequency and traffic and profits feel like no big deal if you blog mainly to have fun helping people. Fun-loving bloggers keep on creating and connecting their way to greatness. Everybody else struggles, getting bogged down, struggling and quitting because they do not enjoy the ride.
3: Spot Reader Problems
Writing and publishing 700 posts on a single blog – I published 1,400 plus posts on Blogging From Paradise in addition to hundreds of guest posts on other blogs – requires you to be skilled at spotting reader problems. Blog post = problem solved. Expand your awareness. Instead of running around rough shod all day long, devote time and energy to identifying common problems suffered by your readers. Nailing down problems supplies you with an endless flow of blog post ideas, helping you become prolific.
Moss Clement does a sensational job in this regard, which makes him incredibly prolific.
4: Brand Yourself Clearly
Zac Johnson recently noted how much he loved my travel photos. Folks have been enjoying my eBooks and paperbacks, sales increasing no doubt because I brand my paperbacks and eBooks freely through images I use on Blogging Tips
Never ignore opportunities to brand yourself and your blog clearly.
Many years ago I rarely if ever worked my travel photos into my guest posts on this blog. These days, every featured image consists of travel photos of me, or, travel photos of my paperback, sitting in some exotic location like here in Ortahisar, Turkey.
Be you. Brand you. Brand yourself clearly to boost sales and to increase your blogging success.
5: Nudge Out of Your Comfort Zone
I do feel pretty good but tired now. At 1:45 PM Turkey time. I have worked for about 3 hours, have walked the dogs for 2 hours and feel ready for a nap, after the rare late night out, being up until 2:30 AM last night. But I nudge out of my comfort zone to write and publish this guest post. Do you believe I felt comfortable writing and publishing 700 guest posts on one blog alone over the prior 3 years? Of course not.
Success unfolds exponentially outside of your comfort zone.
All traffic, profits, comments, social shares and heck, any success, expands quickly as you nudge out of your comfort zone daily. Many days, I feared I’d not have enough time to write and publish a post on Blogging Tips. 1 short week ago I spent nearly 20 hours offline, as I traveled from Oman to Turkey during my birthday. I still managed to write a Blogging Tips post on waking the following day; all about doing fun, freeing but sometimes uncomfortable things to accelerate your blogging success.
Adopt this mindset: 1 day at a time, and 1 moment at a time. Seemingly jaw-dropping feats unfold 1 moment at a time.
3 Gateway Activities Leading to Increased Blogging Income
Most bloggers crave a blogging income boost.
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Some bloggers have yet to make a penny. Other bloggers want to take it up a few levels from their current full time income.
Foolishly, most bloggers focus their attention and energy on an income stream itself to increase blogging income. Can an advertisement make money? No. Ads are inanimate objects. Ads cannot do anything. Skilled bloggers who publish helpful content and build strong bonds make money through ads, but the ads themselves, are completely worthless.
Stop focusing on trying to make money via a specific income stream itself. People obsess over Google Adsense, affiliate marketing and other ways to make money, for increased blogging income, never realizing that the blogger makes the money, not the income stream. Stop obsessing over income and focus on simple, generous activities that lead the way to increased blogging profits. Think of a bridge, linking you to greater blogging profits. You cross the bridge through your commitment to these activities.
Specific gateway activities lead to blogging income. If you want to make more money through blogging, focus on these 3 strategies.
1: Comment Genuinely on Blogs
I commented genuinely on Blogging Tips for weeks. Zac invited me to guest post on this blog. I published nearly 700 guest posts here, boosting my blogging profits through this rocking guest posting gig. Blog commenting served as the gateway activity that bridged me to my increased blogging income. I did not get paid to comment, but genuine comments opened the door for guest posting, and guest posting increased my blogging profits.
Publish genuine, personalized comments on top blogs from your niche. Make friends. Observe how opportunities for prospering multiply around you, through both blog commenting and the bonds you build via this gateway activity.
2: Promote other Bloggers on Your Blog
Guys; this is such an easy gateway activity for boosting your blogging profits. Promote other bloggers on your blog. Look for nothing in return. Be generous. Be genuine. Be helpful.
Photo break; here I am enjoying lunch the other day in Turkey.
How it works: promote other bloggers on your blog via a link and mention. Over time, and through persistent promotion, some of these bloggers befriend you. Blogging buddies:
- promote you
- endorse you
- purchase your products
- hire you
all leading to increased blogging profits.
This is by far the easiest gateway activity for profiting IF you generously, patiently, persistently and genuinely promote other bloggers on your blog, expecting nothing in return.
If you are a travel blogger, promote The Roaming Renegades today. This duo publishes helpful content and engages freely via social media.
3: Practice Writing
Weird, right? Writing is the #1 skill for increasing your blogging income, yet few bloggers practice writing offline, only writing when publishing posts. Bad idea. Advertisers, prospective customers and potential clients need to see that you write skillfully before paying for advertising or investing in your products and services.
Write persistently offline to shine online. Write 500 to 1000 words daily in a Word document. Practice your writing to engage in a critical gateway activity guaranteed to increase your blogging income. Plus, you will stand out from the masses of bloggers who never practice writing offline.
Blogging is simple but sometimes, uncomfortable. See the journey through by focusing on these core activities. Income does not increase by trying to boost your blogging income through channels, forcing cash out of these streams. Blogging income increases for generous, skilled, committed bloggers who give much of their attention and energy to these core, gateway activities.
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