When we think of readers, we immediately think of commenters. Then we look at our stats and see that there are way more readers than commenters â€“ a ratio of 500:1 is not uncommon at all. So who are our readers?
There is a set of people whom we often do not identify as readers and yet we know so much about them. Those are the bloggers who link to us. I suspect subconsciously we do not think of them as readers; we slot them into the category of â€œfellow bloggers.â€
But how lovely when they appreciate and acknowledge us! Just this morning, after posting our latest edition of Canada 9-5 â€“ a blog carnival for Canadian business bloggers â€“ we received a little comment from Evan, one of the people featured in that post. Believe it or not, when I saw his simple, brief note of appreciation first thing after waking up â€“ it made my morning!
So, yes, Iâ€™m linking back to him right here because he made me happy.
Currently, I write for two blogs and contribute guest posts here and there; thatâ€™s an average of 10 posts a week. A big portion of the time spent on these posts goes into identifying good links and of course all the little technical bits of actually putting the link in. So you can write one sentence in a few seconds but as soon as you add a link, it can turn into 20 minutes! Now multiply that by two to three links per post â€¦ (I’m just using myself as an example here; I know people who link even more than I do.)
Bloggers who link to us, then, are readers who have put quite a large amount of effort into that connection. They are people who have read our blogs, selected us out of hundreds of other bloggers, and gone to the trouble of placing a link to our post. They deserve a thank-you!
There are many ways to thank these people. One way that I really enjoy is how Urban Monk does it, who often adds a paragraph or two at the end of his post where he thanks people who have linked to him â€“ hereâ€™s an example.
And talking about gratitude â€“ Iâ€™d like to thank Ronald for inviting me to guest post here. I hope this contribution is the first of many.