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How to Get 2500 New ‘Subscribers’ to Your Blog Overnight (and Why I Don’t Really Care)

Every 2nd blog about blogging today seems to be writing about a video showing how to get 2500 subscribers overnight using a Netvibes accounts and an OPML file with thousands of copies of your own feed in it.

I’ve had a lot of people email me to ask what I think about the technique. My response:

1. It’s not surprising to see that it’s Possible - I’ve seen a few bloggers play with this type of technique over the years.

2. It’s an empty Achievement - so your feedburner button is a few thousand more tomorrow than it is today – but ultimately all it means is that you hacked it – no one new is reading your blog.

3. Do something that Matters – Expend the energy doing something that draws in real new readers. Network with other bloggers, write some quality content, write a guest post for another blog, make your blog stickier…. do something that matters

4. Social Proof? – Yes, having more numbers in your feedburner counter might convince a few extra people to subscribe (social proof) but what happens next week when feedburner closes the loophole and suddenly your regular readers see that you’ve just lost a couple of thousand readers? Is there such a thing as reverse social proof?

5. Risk? – I’ve never really been into ‘evil’ tactics – partly because I just don’t get into them but partly because when you deliberately do something to abuse a service that is provided to you by a company – sometimes things come back to bite you. I’m not sure if Feedburner (owned by Google) would take action against people trying to inflate their numbers – but do you really want to find out?

Want to know how to really build the number of subscribers to your blog?

OK – lets get back to blogging shall we?

About Darren Rowse

Darren Rowse is the founder and editor of ProBlogger Blog Tips and Digital Photography School. Learn more about him here and connect with him on Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and LinkedIn.

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Comments

  1. Yevette says:

    So nice to see that integrity still matters.

  2. Neil Duckett says:

    And the fools using this method think no-one notices they have upwards of e.g 5000 subs yet no-one comments on their posts. No point wasting time with this.

  3. denise says:

    wow, I’ve never heard of this type of hack. Wouldn’t it feel lame to have so many subscribers and no commenters. Oh, people truly are strange.

    btw..I was recently turned onto your blog and I simply adore it. Brilliant.

  4. Hi,

    Thanks for this great post, I really do not know why bloggers need to resort to tactics like that, surely it is better to have a few loyal readers that are interested in what you have to say.

    As opposed to a fictitious amount of people just to prove how popular YOU perceive your blog to be.

    Once again, thanks for the very good post, interesting to read peoples comments.

    All the best.

  5. Olivia Bell says:

    Good post, Darren. I came across another “hack” which fixes the stats on Feedburner, I can understand how someone would be tempted to fiddle… but I’d rather achieve it myself. :)

  6. ur right. this technique is pretty useless. It’s like lying to urself and to ur own blog :) and lying to everyone :)

  7. Matthew says:

    Great post, I see this all the time now get more subscribers, get a 1000 friends on facebook in 30 days etc. etc. The whole point is to connect with like minded people and offer some value. Build a list with good content and good energy. I enjoy your blog and will keep reading.

    Make it great,
    Matt

  8. Pangeran says:

    I think this method is cheating yourself…
    If it is to convinced people to subscribe, then the subscriber found out that your posts is “crappy”, then the unsubscriber would be increase too…

  9. Thanks for the information; I didn’t know about this tactic. I’m kind of surprised that people would do it though…if the goal of a blog is to be read, a high number of no-readers doesn’t achieve it so, really, what’s the point?

  10. Another reason it doesn’t matter is because everyone knows about it know, so it’s pretty much useless.

  11. David says:

    I agree with you, what’s the point of doing that? Those who have done this should have placed a page hit counter that starts with 100,000 which would waste less time with simular fake achievement :)

  12. My vote is with the “empty achievement” state of mind!

  13. I think it is better to work and get the subscribers instead of, a ‘hack’. Build it on solid foundation and it will last a long time.

  14. Hillel says:

    To be ethical is always the perfered way

  15. Holly says:

    This is refreshing to read! I am so sick of seeing “get rich quick” and “monetize your blog” and “how to retire in 21 days” kinds of posts… and I am sick of stumbling onto sites with no content (or worse, plagiarized content) that only exist to scam advertisers and readers…

    Someone’s actually advocating ethical behavior? I’m floored. Thanks for restoring my faith, if only for the next five minutes.

    Holly

  16. Chelle says:

    This is the first time i’ve heard of anyone using this to do it – most cases I’ve heard ppl just do the photoshopping of a button.

    Nobody has much respect for anybody with inflated or untrue subscribers. I just wrote a guest post about the importance of networking & having the trust and respect of others – that will get you way farther than anywhere else in my opinion – online or off.

    I might not have a lot, but it doesn’t even matter to me. The ones I have that subscribe are awesome people i’ve come to know pretty well! Though it did scare the heck out me today when i went to feedburner and saw i had “0″ – I didn’t realize it was the daily subscriber count, not the total and thought oh no, have my last few posts been bad? Thankfully they’re all still there!

  17. Omar Abid says:

    Why hack feedburner? I can simply load problogger.net or any other feed counter and assign my feeds url to the image. I get then a huge number of readers that change.
    Good proof no?

  18. Billy says:

    I recently started up a blog, not really focused on a particular subject. I have reached 100 page views a couple different days which to me is a good start, however I reached that after commenting to several (100+) blogs on the topic(s) which of course took considerable amounts of time each of those days.

    I would love to wake up and have 1000s of new subscribers, but I’d settle for starting out with just a few subscribers who will actually come back. The “hack” you talk about i personally find a waste of time, for me at least..

  19. Tressa says:

    I totally agree. Thank you for this post. I was thinking about ways to do a “quick fix”, but in the end it’s hardwork and trial and error that will get you the traffic.

    Thanks
    Tressa
    http://traffic-101.blogspot.com

  20. Shaan says:

    If your blog is not having attractive content then just getting a big number of wont help in getting new readers and subscribers.
    Regards,

    Shaan Haider