I'm a little nervous as I sit down to write this post, but I feel like it's important and I'd love to get your thoughts as well. It's long, but important... especially if you're new to blogging or TpT.
There has been a lot of chatter lately in different online teacher communities about new comments on blogs and TpT stores: specifically about the etiquette for leaving posts and comments.
I just want to share about my own experience blogging and selling on TpT and hope that it doesn't come off too preachy!
I started blogging in June 2011, but had already had my class website up since 2007. In the beginning of blogging, I remember how nerve-wracking it was waiting for my followers to grow and hoping someone would comment on my blog. The best way I found to increase my audience was to interact on other blogs. I joined and hosted linky parties, got to know other teacher bloggers, and formed relationships with them. My blog grew quickly but I already had a little bit of a web presence and I also spent a lot of time interacting with other bloggers.
Letting a blogger know you're their newest follower or inviting a blogger to come check you out sometime is great and totally acceptable when it comes with genuine feedback and/or comments! I think that we need to remember that everyone looks forward to
meaningful comments on their blog... not comments asking to return the
favor and comment on another blog.
The same goes with products at TpT... especially freebies. When I post freebies at TpT, for example, they're a labor of love and I so appreciate your comments letting me know that you are enjoying them. When I get a comment in the Q&A section like this, however, "I like this. Please come and follow my store and comment on my freebies.", it is very frustrating because that is not the purpose of the Q&A. Does anyone else feel this way?
If you've read my blog on any Sunday this fall, you know I'm a HUGE Lions fan, so let me throw this at you Lions Football style... this season the Lions got ROBBED when the coach threw a flag on a play that was going to be reviewed anyway. You can't ask for a play that is already going to be reviewed to be reviewed... so, as a penalty, they did not review the play after all since he asked for it to be done. Confusing right? But if a blogger or TpTer is throwing a flag my way when I usually check out the blogs of those who comment anyway, I probably won't check it out. I want, and I'm sure you do too, people to enjoy my work because they enjoy it. Not because they are trying to grow their following.
It takes time to be successful and, I have found that the best way is through meaningful relationships with other teacher bloggers. We are all here to help and support each other... we want each other to succeed and we will help you achieve that too... but let's be friends first, not casual commentators who just want to see our numbers grow!
A watched blog and TpT store never boils... or something like that!
Check out these dos and don'ts and feel free to leave your own in the comments below. I know other bloggers would love to see what everyone things... no one wants to make anyone uncomfortable and we all want success!