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Stop blogging in the dark

BlogHer starts on Thursday! And in preparation, I've been thinking a lot about blogging with NationBuilder. Like most bloggers, I try to maintain a consistent schedule of posts, mostly 3-4 entries a week, while also connected with people via our Facebook Page, Instagram, and Twitter, along with my personal social media accounts. As people interact with us, I start to get a better understanding of our audience, which then helps me figure out what they're interested in learning about. 

There was once a time when I blogged for fun but had no clue who was looking at my posts. I was obsessed with manually tracking Facebook likes, Twitter favorites and re-tweets in order to gauge some level of support. It was an inefficient process. With all this in mind, we've got some great things going on with NationBuilder to help bloggers stop blogging in the dark. Lauren Brown Jarvis and I are excited to share some handy information about why creating a nation with NationBuilder will help you take your blog to the next level.

So let's discuss some ways creating a nation can support your blogging goals. I think you'll be pretty jazzed: 

  • The topic(s) you focus on when blogging are really important to you. You know not all of your readers are bloggers, but they're interested in being more deeply connected to other like-minded people. Are you ready to give them the opportunity to help build a community around your blog that goes beyond simply commenting and social sharing? Here are some of the ways building a nation can help you build a community around your blog:
    • You can survey your readers for help understanding what topics appeal to them.
    • Organize events (virtual or in-person) and track RSVPs received via Facebook and your website in one place.
    • Want to create content only available to paid subscribers? You can do that.
    • Interested in crowdfunding your participation in the next big conference? Easy to do with a donation page that allows you to keep all money raised - and our donation processing partners have much lower transaction fees than most crowdfunding platforms.
    • Want to keep track of the people who comment on your posts? Your nation includes a people database. When a new person comments on your blog, a person record will be created for her. When she comments on another post, that comment will be added to her unique person record. 
    • Each person connected to your blog can help spread the word about your passion or recruit more people to financially support your work. You'll be able to track these recruiters and thank them for their support.
    • You can also connect with your readers via email and text message blasts. 
  • Have limited time, but want to publish posts, tweets, and Facebook updates when you're not at a computer? According to tips from Pro-Blogger, a healthy blog should be updated 2 to 3 times a week. This helps keep your readers engaged and provides fresh content for search engines. A feature adored by NationBuilder bloggers (especially blogs with multiple authors) is the content scheduler. This offers the ability to create content and schedule the post to publish later when you're likely to get the most traction. The same functionality is available for Facebook page updates and tweets. 
  • It's important to know who's actually reading your blog, because, let's face it: not knowing your key audience sucks. We have easy integration with Google Analytics and Chartbeat. But understanding your website traffic is only half the story.
  • You spend time cultivating a community on Facebook and Twitter - wouldn't it be great to compile those interactions in one place? Aggregating that information is key to managing relationships. With NationBuilder Match, anyone who likes a post on Facebook, follows you on Twitter, or comments on a post is immediately logged into your people database. No more manual social media tracking. Pretty magical. 
  • Building a community takes time and resources. You can monetize your entire website by including ads in your sidebar, header or footer. 

Additional Resources:

Ready to stop blogging in the dark? Start your free trial today.

Visit our new Bloggers Community page for more information on how to build a community around your blog.

Learn more about how to start a blog

Follow Lauren Brown Jarvis and me, Julie Niemi, on Twitter for updates throughout BlogHer.

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