When I started blogging, it was because I kept reading (through posts I found on Twitter) about how authors needed to blog. It’s the way you build up your platform, they told me. If you don’t blog, you won’t get your name out there.
Typical me, I dove in without doing my homework. I opened up a blog through Blogger (here, in case you’re wondering). I made my profile as pretty as I could, added wonderful, creative pages, and shared my posts through Twitter.
Nearly a year later, and I’d say the results were … pretty dismal. I’d get maybe thirty or so hits per day, minimal interest on individual posts, and hardly anyone left any comments or took up my call to engage with me. My tweets got shared when I tweeted out my posts, but my organic reach was sorely lacking.
Because of that, because I wasn’t seeing much recognition for my efforts, I didn’t keep at it regularly. Why should I? What motivation do I have to blog as an author when hardly anyone’s seeing what I’m writing? My time is limited as it is; I need to spend what writing time I have on my books.
Now, a month or two ago I decided to consolidate all my freelancing articles onto a blog. That way, when applying for gigs, I could point potential clients to one place that showcased my diverse portfolio. Just for fun I tried WordPress this time for something different.
What I found blew me away: other WordPress users were seeing my stuff. All of a sudden I was getting followers on my blog, instead of just Twitter! I was getting likes on my posts, instead of just Facebook. I was even getting re-posts of my posts. I never saw that with Blogger. Plus, WordPress has better themes (in my opinion), is easier to administer (in my opinion), and is easier to link widgets (in my opinion). Now, with a WordPress blog, I can easily show my Twitter timeline, my Facebook likes, and condense a whole host of other social media platforms onto one page. If I could do that with Blogger, I never figured it out.
(If, by this time, you’re thinking that this is a paid post for WordPress, I promise you, it’s not.)
I decided it was time to make the switch. My author website has an RSS feed, and I’ve got my site set up so that my blog feed will fill up one page. And because my page can have up to ten posts showing at any given time, I had to flesh out my WordPress blog with ten posts so that the transition would look seamless to anyone checking in at my website.
I noticed a difference in visibility right away. No kidding: as I’m updating my new blog with ten of my old Blogger posts, my phone is going crazy (I’ve got the email app on my mobile which is registered to my WordPress blogs). And seriously, within a few hours, I had a whole bunch of follows, likes, and even a comment.
In one day … no, one afternoon! That’s crazy!
If there’s one thing I underestimated when I started this whole writing books thing, it’s just how important your author platform is. It’s just how important blogging is to your platform. So if you’re going to make the leap, if you’re an author considering blogging … I’d recommend WordPress off the bat.