What is Compelling Content to You?

Over the next week here on ProBlogger I’ll be exploring the topic of ‘compelling content’.

I’ve identified 7 principles of compelling content that I’ll be sharing (actually it could blow out to 9 as the more I think about it the more I realize there’s to say on the topic) but before I do I wanted to open up the opportunity for people to share their thoughts – undistracted from what I’ll share.

My hope is that in answering this question we’ll begin to set the scene for the posts that will come and that the series that follows will be more useful to everyone. I’d also like to use a few quotes from what you share in some of my following posts so please make sure you include your name and URL in the appropriate areas in the comments below.

So What Makes Content Compelling to You?

Looking forward to reading your thoughts on this question and sharing some of mine in the coming week. Make sure you’re subscribed to ProBlogger to be notified of the posts to come in this series.

What You Do With Your Blogs Over the Weekend [RESULTS]

Over the last few days I asked the question of – what do you do with your blog on the weekend? There were a lot of great responses so I asked Lara Kulpa to compile the results for me.

Everyone answered in their own way but she managed to make some sense of it and came up with the following categories of what people do with their blogs on the weekend.

The numbers signify how many people said that they did that strategy and they are ranked from most common responses to least common:

  • I write extra posts for the week ahead, work on planning and goals, or do other marketing work for my blog – 54
  • I take a couple of days off (or most of my weekend days) for family and fun or other household chores – 20
  • I write/post 6 or 7 days a week no matter what – 20
  • I write “lighter” posts like link lists or reviews – 18
  • I post less because people are not online as much – 15
  • I work another full time job during the week and use weekends for catching up on my blogging – 14
  • No strategy, or I post whenever I have time or an idea, even if that means weekends – 11
  • I post more to try to keep traffic levels up – 9

So there you have it – most people seem to publish posts that they’ve pre-written.

What is your Weekend Blogging Strategy?

Update: we’ve compiled your answers on your weekend blogging strategy and have posted them here.

What is your weekend blogging strategy?

  • Do you post less because people are not online as much?
  • Do you post more to try to keep traffic levels up?
  • Do you just take a couple of days off and just take a break?
  • Do you write posts in advance and schedule them to go off automatically?
  • Do you use the weekend to write posts for the next week because you’ve got extra time on my hands?

Interested to hear your strategy.

PS: I’ve written a little more about what I do on the weekends here and here.

PS2: the weekend’s the perfect time to kick start your blog. Why not start the 31 Days to Build a Better Blog challenge!

Best and Worst Blogging Experiences of the Week

Almost a week ago I started a new type of post here at ProBlogger by asking readers – What Were the Best and Worst Blogging Experiences You Had This Week?

The response was fantastic. I actually found quite a bit of inspiration in some of the comments left and think that there were some great ideas and lessons shared. I think that by sharing the things that have gone well as well as the ‘worst’ stuff (mistakes, problems etc) that we can all learn a lot.

So…. I’ve decided to make this a weekly post that I think I’ll run on Saturday my time (Friday for those of you in the US).

My Best and Worst

Worst – This week was a tough one at home. The whole family (including me) has been sick at different times. On top of that I’ve had a few extra things to do outside of blogging (for example this weekend I’m preaching at church – something that takes a lot of preparation). As a result my main struggle this week has been around finding the time and head space to blog. I think I managed to get through it but did have to lessen my load a little by pulling back on some of my normal social media activities like Twitter.

Best – While I struggled to keep putting out new content this week one of the best things about the week was that some of what I did manage to write seemed to resonate with readers. A couple of posts (this one on declining traffic and this one on my ‘sock drawer’)got over 100 comments which is always a level that I look to on this blog to signal a post did well and for some reason this was one of those weeks when the positive feedback emails outweighed the complaints (always a nice thing).

What was your best and worst of the week? Share anything you like as long as it relates to your experience of blogging!

What Were the Best and Worst Blogging Experiences You Had This Week?

What was the best and the worst thing that happened to you in your blogging this week?

best-worst-1.pngImage by hebedesign

I was reading the blog of fellow Aussie blogger Mia Freedman this week and saw her weekly post ‘Best and Worst of the week‘ in which she asks her readers to share the best and worst things that happened to them during the week (as well as sharing hers).

I thought it was a cool idea and thought I’d give it a go here at ProBlogger – but with one difference. While Mia’s readers write their best and worst things from all areas of their lives I thought it’d be more helpful to everyone if we kept it to the topic of the best and worst things that happened to us as they relate to our online activities/blogging/social media.

I’ll share mine below and look forward to reading yours. Hopefully though this we’ll all learn a thing or two from one another about what works and what doesn’t work in building blogs.

So tell us your best and worst. I’m particularly interested in hearing what you learned through the best and worst of your week.

My Best – Forum Traffic

the best thing to happen to me this week was some big days of traffic on my photography site, particularly the photography forum area of it. Friday in particular was a great day with visitor numbers 3-4 times normal levels. The reason? Actually there were a few:

1. Friday is newsletter day – Friday is normally a good day (usually about double the traffic of other days) because it is the day I send out my weekly email newsletters to readers. The newsletter not only contains the latest posts from the blog section of the site but also hot threads in the forum. But that was only part of it….

2. Twitter – this past week I decided to expand what I was doing with the DPS Twitter account and not only promote new posts on the blog but highlight key threads in the forum. The result has been really promising with a definite bump in traffic from it (I’d say it’s accounted for an extra 10-20% in traffic depending on the day).

3. SEO – just over a week ago I installed VBSEO – a plugin for VBulletin (the platform I run the forum on) that optimizes the forum for search engines. By default and out of the box VBulletin is pretty horrible for SEO so this plugin is one I’ve wanted to install for a while. The results were very quick – within 3 days we’d seen search traffic up by between 25-40% (it varied a little from day to day).

What I learned? I guess there were a few fairly obvious lessons. Twitter and newsletters can be great for driving traffic, VB sucks for SEO by default etc.

The other thing that I relearned is about forums – while the DPS forum gets a lot less visits per day it drives a lot more page views per visit. For example in June the forum area of the site had only an eighth of the visitor numbers that the blog area had – but had about 60% of the page views. ie: Driving one person to visit a blog does not equal the same as driving one person to visit a forum.

My Worst – Comment Spam

This goes back beyond the last week but as a result in an incredible rise in comment spam I’ve switched comments off here at ProBlogger on any post older than 90 days old. I know this inconveniences some but it was the result of massive increase in comment spam getting through the filters/plugins that I was using. The filters were catching many thousands a day but hundreds and hundreds were getting though and it was taking quite a few hours a week to go through them all manually.

As most of these comments were hitting old posts and because 99% of the genuine comments here on ProBlogger were on new posts I took the decision to switch off comments on old posts. I’m hoping that this is a temporary measure and have the tech team at b5media working on some solutions.

So there you have it – my best and worst of the week.

What Were the Best and Worst Blogging Experiences You Had This Week?

What have been the best and worst things that have happened on your blogs or online experience in the past week? What have you learned? What will you do again? What will you do differently?

Who Designed Your Blog?

Poll time – who designed your blog?


Who Designed Your Blog?
View Results

If you’ve got more than one blog – choose the one you consider to be your main blog. Tell us more in comments below!

23% of ProBlogger Readers Have Written Paid Posts [POLL RESULTS]

Have you written a paid review on your blog was the question in our last reader poll here at ProBlogger. 1771 people responded and the result was fairly clear – over three quarters of you have never done a paid review.


77% have never done one and a further 7% don’t currently do one which leaves 16% who either do them regularly or occasionally.

What interests me most about these results is the change in them from last time we asked the question back in 2007.

In that poll we only gave the option for a ‘yes’ and ‘no’ answer but there has been a swing away from paid posts in that time. The shift has not been massive but is noticeable. Here’s how it went last time.


Perhaps this reflects a change in the audience here at ProBlogger but I suspect it also shows a change in bloggers attitudes to paid posts also.

Back in 2007 they were a much hotter topic (there was a heap of debate on the topic) and many bloggers were keen to experiment with paid posts as a potential income stream.

Do You Do Affiliate Marketing on Your Blog? [POLL]

Affiliate Marketing is one income stream that many bloggers experiment with – but how many are attempting to make money in this way?

Do You Do Affiliate Marketing on Your Blog?
Total Votes: 1301 Started: 6/19/2009 Back to Vote Screen

Once you’ve voted – here’s a few posts on the topic for those wanting to explore it more.

Don’t know what Affiliate Marketing is? Check out What is Affiliate Marketing.

Ask Me a Blogging Related Question [Bonus for Workbook Buyers]

Do you have a question about blogging that you’d like to hear me answer?

As a bonus to those who buy the 31 Days to Build a Better Blog workbook I’m going to record a podcast later this week that tackles as many blogging related questions as possible.

The recording will be made available as a thank you/bonus to anyone who has previously bought the workbook or who buys it in future. Get Your Own Copy Here if you’d like to get access.

If you’d like to ask me a question – feel free to either email it via the contact form here at ProBlogger or leave it in comments below. If you use the contact form make your first line of the email include ‘question for 31DBBB podcast’ so I know what it is for. I’ll credit people with their questions unless it specifically says to keep them anonymous.

Questions can be related to 31 Days to Build a Better Blog project, any of the daily tasks in it, or any other blogging related question. I’m not sure how many questions I’ll get but I’ll attempt to answer as many as I can during the recording.