Here's how this works. I'm sure you've seen it before. The game goes like this; if your blog gets a certain number of hits you can use this leverage to get free stuff. Using simple tools such as Google Analytics you can go to vendors proving your blog gets X number of visits. Presenting this info you explain that if you get one of their products to review they will get more exposure. It's a good tactic and depending on your motive you can get a lot of free stuff. There are several ways to artificially increase the number of hits. How is this accomplished? You create a "giveaway" or have a contest. The main way people win this contest is by liking your Facebook page and sharing your post on Twitter or other social media. It's basically spamming your blog to whoever will listen. This tactic is very effective even if the product you're giving away isn't all that great. People love free stuff.
I don't resent anyone who does this and I've seen the positive effects for several blogs that do. I couldn't bring myself to go down this path and the result was a huge lack of free stuff. I do find comfort knowing that the people who follow my blog do so knowing that they aren't getting anything in return but my thoughts. Poor grammar and all. I still seemed to lack a blog identity. I went through a struggle of figuring out what I wanted my blog to stand for. The purpose of my blog from the very beginning was to provide a place to share my thoughts and fishing experiences. That's where it's going again. The other side of the game just isn't for me.
As one can see if you read my blog that the majority of my post deal with fishing, fly fishing in particular, fishing equipment and accessories and occasional off subject post. The love of fishing and communicating with other fishermen is why I blog.
I don’t do face book or twitter, mainly because those types of media communication just don’t interest me.
I look at my blog as somewhat of fishing log where I can look back and relive some of those fishing moments I had years back. I seldom participate in the free stuff or give away items. Thanks for sharing
Thanks for the comment Bill. I participate in giveaways every now and then. I like Fiberglass Manifesto's 12 Days of Christmas. At least with that I don't have to spam my friends and family to have a better chance at winning.Delete
Kevin, would love to join in on this conversation. Just want to say that self-evaluation of your blog is a great thing. Really respect your view of things as you recorded it here. As you probably know, I have been all over the place with my blogs over the years. This past year I decided that active participation in all the social media outlets was worth a whirl to see how it impacted my blog. Like you, it is all too much for me for the time I have to commit to fly fishing and fly tying which is what I love. I will be taking a step back now and focusing on my intent of my blog. Like Bill Trussell, love to record my fishing thoughts and trips and share in fish talk with anyone who drops by. That is enough for me to enjoy and reading blogs like yours is the kind of experience I want from my BlogBuddies. Thanks for sharing.ReplyDelete
It's easy to get sucked in. Thanks for the comment and thanks for following my blog. I really appreciate the updates you gave about Howard.Delete
Hi Kevin. When I started Northern California Trout it was designed to provide information for those fishing for trout. Occasionally I wander to places I've seen and even tried jokes, but that bombed. In the five years NCT has been in existence I've had one give away. It was a set of Steelhead flies I got and couldn't use so I decided to give them away. It's your blog, do it your way.ReplyDelete
I think you're doing a good thing here. You should do what you want with it and not worry with everything else. I got into blogging because I wanted a place to share things with other like-minded individuals... and on that front I think I have succeeded... despite my recent inactivity. I don't have any family and very few friends who care about fly fishing, so my blog was born out of wanting to share my stories with others who might actually care to listen.
I can tell you that I've never done much to promote my blog aside from joining the Outdoor Blogger Network. I do routinely comment on other blogs which gets a lot of return traffic. I've been given my fair share of free gear for review, and I've never had to contact a company to do that... I've always been contacted by them. It probably doesn't hurt that I have female fishing presence on my blog and one of the recurring themes and labels of many blog posts is "outfished by a girl." In that light, your daughter could be a real asset in making you and your blog different from so many others where it's just another dude who fly fishes. The father who takes his daughter fishing isn't so common.
You'll also notice on my blog that I have zero advertisements... and you won't even a list of products I use or endorse. A lot of my gear is older, classic stuff, that no one could find anywhere except ebay anyway... so I have no real need to promote gear. I think blogs should be more about content than anything. Tell a good story that people want to read, and the traffic and freebies will find their way to you. For the record, I have very rarely done a giveaway... I think twice in my blog's history.
I appreciate the feedback Jay. I didn't really think about the father, daughter part. You're right, you don't see that very often. I'm definitely going to have more posts about us fishing together this year.Delete
I agree about the giveaways. I was going to do one but felt slimy about it. I give my friends free promotion and that feels right to me. Go with your heart. I hope you have a great season this year.ReplyDelete
Word up Kevin.ReplyDelete