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Blogging 101: Getting Personal

If you are building an online business and thus, an audience or community, this is an important point. Did I mention the number of mom blogs there are in the world?! (3.9 million plus) What is the only thing that’s different about yours? YOU.

In the online world, it’s easy to get caught up with all the bells and whistles and widgets! There are a hundred ways to streamline and automate the tasks that are necessary for maintaining your online presence, whether on your blog or on Twitter or other social platform. There yet more services that will gladly take your money to personalize all those automated messages.

In the end, nothing stands up to truly human and personal touches, even in our high tech world. I’ve seen it firsthand. I can “meet” other moms online, like we’ve done on My Mommy Manual but it’s in our real life Meetups that these connections can thrive, through the emotional bonds I can create in those live experiences.

Internet marketers love to discuss tactics on how to improve mailing list opt-in rates. Studies have shown that the drop out rate goes up exponentially with every additional piece of data you request. Last week in our Hopeful World classroom, we offered a bonus: a handwritten word of encouragement to our Ordinary Courage students, to be delivered via snail mail to anyone who just asked and sent us their mailing address. We did it old school — no opt-in form, just via email.
We did it, not so much for the addresses but because it’s who we are. Yes, we are hand-writing notes and hand-addressing the envelopes (Whew!) but we think it’s worth it to get personal. Of course the marketer in me couldn’t help but notice that within two days, 89% of the class asked for a note.

We can’t meet in person all the time or write hundreds of personal notes but think about what you can do on your blog to support that rich human connection. Get creative about how you can use all the techie bells and whistles: can you host a live chat on Ustream? Can you create a live Q&A with your audience using the Live Chat widget? Can you celebrate birthdays or feature readers on your Facebook Page’s wall?

It’s all about getting personal and asking yourself where YOU can connect with visitors on your blog or online business.

photo credit: stock.xchng

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