I have decided to take a step in blog accountability- I will be doing a “State of the Blog” post twice a year, in July and January! I find it incredibly frustrating when bloggers talk about having growth but don’t give you any tangible numbers to work with. Did you grow by 200%? Does that mean that you grew by several hundred followers, or you added 10 followers when you were starting with 5? And what are you doing to achieve that growth? Do I need to pay to hear anything actually useful? In these updates, I’ll be sharing my percentage of growth, as well as the current number of followers, and what I have been doing for each social network to grow!
I’m hoping that my experiences can potentially help other people out there- I have the network, percentage of growth, and number of followers (rounded to the nearest 10) included here! For each network I quickly share what I’ve done with it in the first half of the year (including what worked and what didn’t), what I plan to do in the second half of the year, and what my specific goals are. I find making measurable goals more helpful- sometimes I fall short, but I have still learned something from it, and vague goals are difficult to succeed at! So, without further adieu, the stats…
WordPress: 70.9% growth (2200 current)
My incredible amount of WordPress follower growth is largely down to me being featured on WordPress Discover- in the span of 2 1/2 months, I’ve gained 800 followers, which is pretty nutso. I wish I had tips on how to get featured for you, but I’ve honestly no clue as to how or why I was chosen! I’ve also gotten back into regularly commenting on WordPress blogs, and I try to comment on two blogs a day.
2nd Half 2018 Goals: Start doing blog roundup posts again, quarterly instead of monthly.
Facebook: 78% growth (130 current)
Oh, Facebook, you weirdo of a social network. I find Facebook particularly pointless- Facebook wants pages to pay for people to see their product (aka my blog), but I’ve not found Facebook ads particularly useful at the end of the day. My growth is largely due to Facebook follow threads in blogging groups, but I haven’t seen much interaction changes outside of those few blips. I don’t put much stock in Facebook anymore, so I’m not too bothered by low referrals!
2nd Half 2018 Goals: Reach 150 followers.
Instagram: 61.3% growth (420 current)
I have spent the last month or so focusing on Instagram, and I finally broke the 400 follower mark after spending about 2 months hovering! I find Instagram to be a difficult beast; I don’t particularly like super-themed accounts because I find I get bored of them rather quickly, and a lot of people never actually respond to comments. (To everyone who says, “Instagram is a SOCIAL network, you have to be SOCIAL”, I am being social. A lot of people aren’t social in return.) I am finding that using small-ish hashtags and actively following and engaging with 5-10 new accounts a week is helping, and I’m actually enjoying Instagram a lot more now!
2nd Half 2018 Goals: Reach 600 followers; come up with a unique hashtag for people to use.
Twitter: 18% Growth (390 current)
I am going to admit that I have not been paying close attention to Twitter in the last 6 months; I need to make it a part of my daily routine again! I find Twitter frustrating in regards to blog traffic. A lot of people will share things on Twitter, but in my own experience, not much comes from those shares. I think that there are a LOT of voices yelling into the void on Twitter, and it can be difficult to get your own voice out there. However, I am hoping to focus on using it to build relationships with other bloggers and possibly even brands!
2nd Half 2018 Goals: Reach 500 followers; participate in Twitter chats twice a month.
Pinterest: 212.2% growth (270 current)
Pinterest has been a rousing success for me, I have to say! No, I don’t have 10,000 followers but I’m feeling like I’ve really got a handle on it now. According to Pinterest itself, the first 5 pins of the day are very important- so, I spend a minute pining 5 of my own pins in the morning, and then throughout the day I spend about 15 minutes total pinning other pins. I transitioned to a business account on Pinterest, which allows me to see some fantastic analytics, including the fact that I have 96k monthly viewers and 4.1 monthly engaged pinners. I know that everyone touts Tailwind, but unfortunately Tailwind is not in the budget!
2nd Half 2018 Goals: Reach 400 followers; reach 200 monthly referrals from Pinterest.
Blog Growth Overall: 60.9% (2710 current)
Overall, I am exceptionally happy with my blog growth in the last half year. Personally, this has been an incredibly difficult year, and I don’t know that it will be getting easier- the blog has been a fantastic focus for me, and the community here has been wonderful in supporting me. I will be working with a blogging consultant for the next year to see where I can take my blog, and I am hoping start monetising soon. I hate the feeling of being used by bloggers as a commodity, so I won’t be pushing that to the forefront but it would be lovely to earn something from the blog!
2nd Half 2018 Goals: Reach 3500 followers; earn $25 CAD from the blog (start small, friends); change theme; make a media kit.
What social media networks do you use for your blog? What is your number one tip that any blogger could use?