I hear a lot of talk in the blogging community about quality vs quantity in regards to followers and stats.
I have to say, many of these conversations tend to rub me the wrong way. So often I hear a (self-proclaimed) “small blogger” say something like “I don’t care that I only have a few followers, I prefer quality followers, that are really engaged to having a lot of numbers.”
First off, I just want to say “Yes, you do care about the numbers!!!” How do I know this? Because we’re talking about numbers. The fact that they are brought up in virtually every conversation that bloggers have together, shows that they matter. I’m not saying it’s a bad thing to discuss them, I’m saying we should be able to own the fact that it matters to us.
Secondly, statements like the above are often (though not always) a slight “dig” at bigger bloggers. They are frequently phrased in such a way that smaller blogger is almost justifying the fact that they are smaller by subtly claiming that it somehow makes them a “better” blogger than a larger blogger.
Granted, it’s a huge pet peeve of mine when one group of people is encouraged at the expense of another. That’s just not okay in my opinion. We can offer support and encouragement without being down on anybody, it just takes a bit more thought.
The third reason this type of thinking gets under my skin, is that, it implies that you can only choose one. A blogger can either have a lot of followers or a dedicated community of followers but not both.
That is simply not true. It is absolutely possible to do both and it’s what we should all be striving for. Although we each have our own purposes in our blogging, we’re all writing to reach people, and so naturally, we want to reach as many as possible. Don’t trick yourself into thinking that you have to choose one or the other. You can most definitely have both, and you can encourage yourself and other bloggers without being “down” on blogs with a higher reach than your own.
I will give you an example. Lisa Jo Baker has one of the most beloved mommy blogs around. The encouragement that pours from her every blog post is absolutely inspiring. She has almost 15,000 followers on Facebook and she’s an author of a book. She’s fantastic. She hasn’t sacrificed the quality of her words, her writing or her authenticity for her reach. In fact, her reach grows because of her quality. Lisa has both and that’s only one of the reasons she runs one of the most inspiring blogs I’ve ever come across.
Another great example is Angela England (the same gal who is offering the publishing course we told you about last week). This woman is absolutely awe-inspiring. She’s a homeschooling mom of 5, a blogger with multiple sites, an author of multiple books and a publishing coach. Her site Untrained Housewife is home to some utterly fantastic posts on homemaking and her coaching skills have me in awe. She responds to emails the day she gets them and she treats her clients like they are the most important people in the entire world. It astounds me that she’s able to do all of this, especially since her reach is far more than my own, and I know I struggle to keep up with the number of emails I receive each day!
So my friends, stop telling yourself it’s “quality vs quantity”, because it certainly doesn’t have to be. Don’t limit yourself that way. Keep the quality coming, keep it growing, but reach for the quantity too.
Compare yourself to bloggers who are being really successful and figure out what they are doing that you are not. Instead of just hoping it will happen for you this year, be on the look out for ways to grow and make it happen.
Reach for your dreams, but be willing to make the changes necessary to achieve them.
Quality and Quantity. Let’s have both this year.
Have you ever tricked yourself into thinking you could only choose one of these? What are you going to do to grow your blog in both of these areas this year?