Dear Loyal Readers, Recently I've taken a short break from blogging. While this has occasionally…
Ok, I admit it. Like so many others out there, I make first impression snap judgments. I make snap judgments when I meet people, when I review companies, authors, blogsâ€¦ nearly everything. This is especially true when I am surfing the net. I find that I am normally correct about my snap judgments and force myself take serious note when I am wrong. It is a valuable skill to quickly determine if the source is worth an investment of time. Let’s face it; there is a lot of crap out there.
Until recently, I have not given much thought to how I go about making the judgments when revewing a new blog, I was just aware that I was making them. I came across a post discussing the RSS feed count that made me stop and give this blogger first impression process some thought. The post was discussing the logic behind publishing or hiding the rss feed count and the impact this count has on feed subscription.
Some readers are more likely to subscribe to a blog if it has a large subscriber base. This is probably true because a large feed count somehow validates the readability and worth of a blog in some way.
Before I go much further, let me take a moment to explain what I am talking about. FeedBurner.com is a company that I use that helps blogs and websites broadcast their information to readers using a technology called RSS (Really Simple Syndication). I previously posted a short video that explains RSS and why it is a much better way of staying on top of the information overload.
My RSS feed and FeedBurner count can be found at the top of the sidebar under the orange RSS icon. The FeedBurner count shows the number of people who are currently subscribed to a my feed or more plainly, the number of people who get pushed this information when it is published. When people subscribe to a specific blog the number goes up. When they unsubscribe, the number goes down.
Many pro-bloggers chimed in on other posts that unless you have 200+ readers in your count, it is unwise to publish this number. The logic being that if people see a lower number they are more likely to move on. More importantly that this number is vital to your blog’s first impression.
While reading these posts I chuckled to myself as I have always published my number. It has slowly risen from just a handful of readers to 30-40+ over the past few months My count has always been far below the suggested 200 level and up until now I paid little attention.
Maybe there is some truth to the magic 200 number. Perhaps I would have a higher chance of interviewing VIP’s if they saw a larger count number. Perhaps it would be easier to get greater numbers of user comments and a larger, more valuable group discussion. The balance to this argument is content. It does not matter how many people you have subscribed, you can only keep them with great content.
So here is my new goal. By the end of June, I want 200 RSS subscribers. I will continue to openly post my numbers and I hope this is an achievable goal. We will find out. Oh, and if you have not done so already, please subscribe to my feed!