April 28, 2004
I am very grateful for the readers who visit my blog. A lot of them have been around for a long time and I feel as if I know them as friends, even though I'll probably never meet more than a handful of them in person. They do two things that I really like.
First, they visit me almost every day. They are my audience and they often inspire me to write when I really don't feel like doing it. It's like when someone sends you a present. You need to send back a thank-you note, just to show good manners and proper appreciation of the gift. And yes, I consider my readers to be a gift.
Second, they follow the links I put on my page. I surf a lot of blogs. When I find a good one, I immediately check to see if their site meter stats are open. If I see a good blog that gets 20 visitors per day, I'll link that blog, just to generate some traffic to the site. I'm no Instapundit, but my readers definitely light up the hit-counter for a blog with few visitors. I've jump-started a few worthy sites that way.
I'm just passing it along. Some of the big guys really helped me when I was starting out, and I want to return that favor. Blogging is a lonely task when no one reads you. I've seen a few people use clever marketing and mass emails to boost their sites, but I prefer the ones who toil in obscurity and hope to build readership through good work instead of salesmanship. Those are the ones I link.
As Glenn Reynolds once said, an Instalanche will give you a lot of visitors in a single day. But if you have no product to offer, that 'lanche is a one-shot deal. The readers won't be back. I still believe that if you build it, they will come.
But somebody needs to let people know that you're out there. That's what I often try to do.
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