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Monday, February 23, 2009

Readers' Response

The readers' response to my post Subscribers - Who Are You? was far beyond anything that I had imagined. It really makes me wonder what happened? What should I learn from this? What should I do different going forward?

So here are some initial thoughts ... and a lot of questions ...

Blog Icebreakers

Obviously, I finally asked a question that got a lot of people to comment. I really can't say why this finally got a good response. I should point out that it's still a small percentage of the total audience according to Feedburner. But even still - this might be the most commented post ever.

To me this makes me wonder - Will any of the first timers comment again?

Why did this work? And what should I do the next time if I want to get lots of feedback?

There's also an interesting question of whether I should be doing other icebreakers to better engage with everyone?

Finding My Blog

Google seems to be helping a lot. Seems like this blog is being recommended by Google. I have no idea how this part of Google Reader works, but obviously it's great to have it happening.

Lots of referrals from other blogs (thanks Clive, Karyn, Harold, Jay, Stephen, Cathy, Christy, Cammy, etc.). This is part of the reason that I think sites like eLearning Learning are helpful. They point you to a good set of blogs.

A couple of mentions of Twitter. That's somewhat a surprise to me and I'm not quite sure I get how this really happens. Can someone weigh in on how this dynamic works?

Diversity

There is far greater diversity among my readers than I think about. People who speak English as a second (or third) language. Many readers who are outside of corporate learning.

One important comment on this - the beauty of diversity is different perspectives. But for us to have those different perspectives, I need more active participation from people with different perspectives. I welcome discussion of how your world is different from what I describe. Or how you think I'm wrong or too narrow.

I hope that we've broken the ice here a little bit and that you will contribute more when you have thoughts.

Speaking

Many people mentioned subscribing after hearing a presentation. I often think about the fact that any post will reach quite a large number of people and that a presentation only reaches a small number in comparison. However, it appears that many presentations reach a new audience. So, I may have to rethink the importance of speaking.

It also makes me realize how large the potential audience is and that realistically I'm reaching a very small number.

New Blogs


Several people mentioned relatively new blogs in their comment. I continue to believe in the value of blogging and I do what I can to help grow an audience for new bloggers. Your mention in a comment on my blog is likely very much buried. You might want to look at New Blog for some other ideas.

What Else?

I'm not even sure what I should make of the response. It's really great to make this much of a connection - again argues in favor of presentations.

What else should I have got out of this experience?

Isn't it amazing that I'm still learning how to blog after doing it for more than 3 years?

5 comments:

Benjamin Duffy said...

I came to your blog after finding you on Twitter. I still don't go to your blog first, I follow your tweets about a blog post to it.

I use Twitter to understand the world of social media, and eLearning better. In TweetDeck I have a search set up for eLearning. This appears in a column and any tweet with the word eLearning in it shows up there. I look through the search for users who actively tweet about learning, look at their recent tweets and determine if I should follow them.

Following you, has led to some great material that I just wouldn't have found any other way because mostly because I'm not actively looking for it. Twitter allows me to passively look for it and have the information bubble up to me through recommendations of folks like yourself.

Thanks for providing a valuable service : )

Karyn Romeis said...

Very interesting feedback on your 'Who are you?' post. I'm delighted that you gained at least one new reader from my mention in Training Zone magazine. One never really knows how much impact an article like that will have.

Tony Karrer said...

@Benjamin - that's a very interesting comment. Do you scan all the tweets from someone? I personally miss stuff unless it's when I'm paying attention to Twitter.

@Karyn - Thanks. I would guess that there are many more given that there are 70 or so comments out of more than 7,000 subscribers. So if one person says that they found it that way, then there might be 100 others who just didn't respond. Or it could be just that one. :)

cim said...

I think exploring why people get engaged in social networking is really fascinating. It always saddens me a bit to see a great question on a blog go unanswered yet it doesn't bother me enough to jump into the conversation.

I think one of the reasons why I responded was because it felt as if you were speaking directly to me. Typically, I just lurk because I think others will respond with bigger, better, faster stronger replies.

Another reason I responded is because I saw that they were so many other responses. Rather than self consciously making my way into a sparsely populated room, my comment took me into a big ol' party where everyone seemed to be chatting away and generally having a good time.

Don said...

Like Benjamin, I use TweetDeck, and I have it set up to show me any tweets that contain the word "eLearning". It may seem a bit backward, but I actually found this blog via Twitter!