Friday, 14 December 2007

The History of the Guest Blog Spot

Teeni recently asked me about the origins of my 'Guest Blog Spot'. Well, it started with a wish to celebrate on reaching my 2000 visitor. Now I know from looking at the stats and the referrals that some of this blog's visitors are transitory fleeting migrants landing briefly after a Google search. They don't even stop long enough for the site to register any amount of time. All that is left on sitemeter is a nano of a second footprint. On the other side of the coin there are visitors who stop and read for 2 to 30+ minutes. Many of them do not leave a comment. They just quietly leave. A few make return visits - silent visits.

I came up with the idea I'd offer a prize of a 'Guest Blog Spot' for the first NEW commenter on the site meter hitting the 2000 visitor. Once I realised some people leave comments as a means of self promotion I then assumed that every reader would be a blogger and would have a site to 'promote'. I've since found there are what is known as 'blurkers' - they only read blogs. Now I only started to read blogs after I'd started one. In fact originally, I'm rather embarrassed to say, that I didn't even know how to leave a comment. I assumed the purpose of comments was to let the blogger know their entry had been read. I admit I would only choose to leave a comment if I found the blog of interest. If it didn't attract me in any way then I would leave silently. I would not return.

My first virginal comment was actually emailed to the blogger. I thought I'd made a mistake by clicking on the little white envelope and not on the comments link. But now looking back at my archived emails I think I may actually have sent her a 'link' to her post. (Blush) Everything was by trial and error. I slowly realised that when leaving a comment the blogger often visited my blog and finally someone left me a comment. An exciting moment. Until that point I had made one or two comments anonymously on my own blog. And persuaded a close friend to visit and leave a short sharp remark. I wanted it to look as if I had readers. I can't quite remember when I found sitemeter and installed it.

I've mostly found out how to blog by the sink or swim method. I've enjoyed jumping into the deep end and finding my way around the system. I sometimes sneak off to use a friends PC or one at the library so that I can check how my blog looks on other page set ups. I've recently read this book which has introduced to me some other ideas on blogging and some blog slang terms such as blurker. There's much to improve on in the future.

Now to return to the initial point I had a great deal of fun choosing the Guest Blogger. I was reluctant to close the slot at the end of the month. I also liked the idea of promoting blogs that I might not have found very easily by just surfing the blogosphere. It also encouraged bloggers who may have been shy of leaving a remark previously. I'm aware of a couple of regular readers who did eventually rise to the bait and leave a comment. I don't want to promote every guest to my blogroll as it would just grow and grow. But if I become a regular reader they do attain that sort sought after position. Lucky people.

The guest bloggers will always be there in the archives. Anyone who is interested in finding out previous guests will only have to click on the tag 'GUEST slot' to see all the previous posts. I hope to figure out if it will be possible to eventually link the tag to the monthly slot in the sidebar. But that will be for the quieter days of the New Year.

Finally, on writing this I have had confirmation of what I long suspected. Regular readers who read an entry via a feed RSS or Atom may not appear in the stats. So to all of my fellow bloggers who allow site feed - you may have more readers than your stat counter shows.


lady thinker said...

If anyone is able to point me in the direction to help me correct this most annoying habit blogger has of not allowing para breaks after the first 2 paras I would be mightily pleased. The font also appears to change half way through. GRRR.

teeni said...

Oh, how annoying about the paragraph breaks. I use WordPress though so I can't help you there. Just wanted to thank you for the linky love and explaining how you got started with the guest blog spot. Very nice thing that you do to recognize other bloggers and try to get people to comment. I now try to comment on any post I read just to let my buddies know I was by. I realize I'm going to get to a point where I cannot physically keep up with that but I'll deal with it when it comes.

lady thinker said...

Well teeni as you can see I am now attempting to work with HTML. Very slow but I assume I'll speed up when I don't have to keep referring to a book.
I think writng you blog is most important and the occasional comment is all any of us can hope for really.

Anonymous said...

That is a very nicepost thanks for sharing :)

Mark Wadsworth said...

Thank heavens for blurkers, is all I can say!

rilly super said...

lady thinker, if you go to the 'edit html' page and just do an 'enter' where you want your paragraph break that does the trick.

hope you are well, I have been rather remiss lately but trying to get back into the swing of things. maybe I should borrow that book from you although it might mean I think about things a bit too much, a bit like you shouldn't wonder how you stay upright when riding a bicycle, and fall off completely, sigh

lovely to catch up with you. All the best
love Rilly

Gorilla Bananas said...

I wasn't going to leave a comment until I saw your name was Penelope. Lady Thinkers are fine but Lady Penelopes outrank them.

lady thinker said...

Hello kaylee and Mark W - thank you. I agree mark.

Rilly dear girl, so nice to see you out and about again. The WIFE in the north has been doing splendidly as an understudy ... I fear you may have lost some of your regular supporters to her blog now.

thanks gorilla - or may I just call you Bananas? the only resemblance between myself and Lady Penelope is the stiff movement. I get more like her with each passing year..