A blogger confesses to using click bait

January 14, 2018

True confessions from a learning-as-I-go-blogger (aka, ME, who started late in the ‘.com’ of blogging) about using click bait.

So, how is it going figuring out this crazy deal (ordeal) of blogging??

Let’s see, there are a couple of things that are going well.  Considering, you know, that I don’t really know what the hell I’m doing.

I don’t know about you, but, whew…it always feels better to admit to things, doesn’t it?

Yeah, yeah, yeah, it does.

What is going well?

  1. Commitment:  I’m sticking to blogging every day.  It appears the habit has stuck like glue to me, I wake up excited to write and that is rewarding.
  2. Comments:  I’ve been reaching out and commenting on other blogs as I’m able to find time to do so.  Holy crap, I don’t know how people do it!?!  I don’t want this blog to consume my life, so I’ve limited the time to early mornings during the work week.  On weekends though…I find time to get sucked into it.  As a result of reaching out (or at least that’s what I surmise is happening?), I’m receiving comments from other bloggers.  Those comments have been a highlight of my blogging experience.  It is fun to hear from them, and share thoughts back and forth.  I’m truly grateful to have learned the benefits of doing so.

My confessions about blog posts that work (or don’t)?

Interestingly enough, I have learned some pretty interesting shit (well, that’s not very nice…).

But, first, dear reader(s), before I confess, please continue reading only if you dare to be:

  • free of judgment
  • uncomfortable seeing how pathetic I am as I pay attention too closely to stat trends
  • concerned for any real stability in my brain
  • able to push aside a strong desire to send me off to some blogging university for lessons  (By the way, been there, tried some of it, it wasn’t all it boasted it would be…)  

The first eye-opening lesson (confession) came when I was nominated for the Liebster Award (TWICE…hold back the clapping of hands please!!!).  I already wrote about the experience of being nominated and my acceptance speech.  

But I didn’t share confessions about my experience the days following the acceptance and after I did all the work required of the nomination (OMG, it takes a lot of fricken’ time, have you seen the to-do list??).

Confessions about the day after…

I hadn’t ever wondered what the day after acceptance of an award nomination would feel like?  It wasn’t on my blogging lessons radar.  And this was a nomination for an award I hadn’t applied for.  If I had applied for it, then received a nomination, I would have been prepared, ready, and even more excited about it.  Maybe? 

The nominations just rolled into my inbox, out of the blue sky – stars were aligned somewhere I guess?

IMG_8667c(Disclaimer:  Don’t get me wrong, I’m beyond touched that the bloggers who nominated me felt I was worthy of the nomination!  I feel the same about the list of people I nominated.  They are awesome bloggers to me!  They have been kind, they’ve responded to me, they’ve supported me, and I really enjoy reading their blogs.  It is supposed to be a fun way to get to know new bloggers, that’s a cool concept, which I admire.  I’m positive for others, it is a great experience that I’d love to hear more about.…but I, on the other hand NOW have doubts about the underlying purpose of the award, that’s what this mini-lesson is all about!).

Back to my rant (aka, mini-lesson)…after being stymied by the award nomination, my faithful first response to any blogging prompt is:

(insert image of a blinking line…)

BlinkingLineCapture

And I’m a rule follower, so I quickly (Google searched, followed the link in the nominator’s blog post, re-read the nominator’s post, etc.) investigated the “award” and yep, at first glance, it looked legit, so I took the click bait.

The arrival of the nomination evoked me to action.  I accepted it, and you know what?

It took a lot of time.

And then it was over.

The committee who reviews the nominations (if you check around, it seems there are more than just one contest called this award; all accepting entries for a long time) decides the outcome – get this, at the end of the year in which you’re nominated.  Being nominated in the first part of the year is not really a great thing, is it?  I don’t know about you, but chances are I will have forgotten about this way before 2019 arrives!  Let alone have one of the judges go back to look at all the entries…for a whole year, and pick my entry?  Yeah right, like that’s going to happen!?

Now what, should I wait…again…for another award to fall from the sky or what?  Oh my, that sounds like…what’s the word for it…oh yeah, fun…?  NOT!

But…here’s the blogging kick-yourself-in-the-pants thing about virtual click bait awards…the originators of the “awards” do get LOTS of traffic to their blog.  I (sad but true) literally clicked back and forth from the damn rules page on their site so many times.  I’m sure their stats were out of the roof that day.  (As a new blogger, that’s what we do, we click back and forth, back and forth, back and forth…as we try to figure things out, – blog award page owner, you’re welcome, by the way!)

Unlike my stats on the day that I announced my nomination (very eloquently, I must say – I took it seriously, yes, I did!…maybe gullible should no longer my middle name???), I saw a DECREASE in blog readership.  Note red star day below.

StatsCapture2

Well, isn’t that nice?  Wasn’t it a prestigious award…shouldn’t the whole blogging world want to read about my nomination?  NOT!

IMG_8762cbw

I’m so over the small disappointment. YEP!  I bounce back well in my old age, I see learning things as a good thing!  (There may have been some comfort food involved in recovery though…and a beer…and some french onion dip…it goes well with chips…)

IMG_8499c

What’s the 2nd eye-opening lesson (aka, the scoop on my blue star day)?

Oh yeah, now that’s an entertaining story.  It was a historically glorious, stat through the roof, kind of day (or should I say – a 3-olive martini day – not just a Leinie’s day, but a 3-olive martini day and dip on top of the chips for sure kind of day!).

What did I do differently that day?

I used click bait porn?

WHAT????  There’s something called that?

No, I made it up when I was shocked to see the response.  “It has to be click bait porn??”  

Okay…so what did I do to get that kind of response?  Unlike other bloggers who have figured this shit out, I don’t mind sharing the gory details to my one day of success to help others see what may have happened.

I’ve been paying attention to my stats…like every good blog creeper should do…

BlogStats1Capture

I know (from my stat analytics) Saturday at 1:00 pm is the best view time slot for my faithful readers.  Apparently, like me, these other people get their chores done in the morning and love to veg on their computers on a Saturday afternoon, too?  Other days, a static trend in stats of my real true readership is the norm.  (No matter how many times I refresh the screen!)  

That day in history, I figured, what the heck, try posting on 2 prompts – a photo challenge, and the Daily Post Prompt, AND…since it was the end of the year, people were no doubt setting goals for the first of the year. I had a (theory to test) feeling that if I posted on a Facebook group page about “What it’s like the first year of going gray?” it may be something the wannabes to going gray would like to read?

It turns out when someone is about to set goals, they like to read about someone else who has been there, done that. Blog posts about important stuff are helpful that way.

Huh…

Moral of the story (confessions):  Blogging takes a lot of work.  It is a hit or miss kind of deal.  The mysterious workings of carving out space as a blog writer remain a work in progress for this learning-as-I-go-blogger.  Click bait is a piece of the puzzle.  No one confesses about their click bait in their “how-to set up a blog in 10-minute” blog posts, do they???

I just confessed…and I’m testing the waters again – all the experienced bloggers know how pathetic my attempt today really is…!  At least I’m confessing upfront to you about it, right?  I sure wish the prompt word was confession… 

Daily Post Prompt:  Evoke

Daily Post Prompt:  Static

Daily Post Prompt:  Carve

Daily Post Prompt:  Entertain

 

 

 

 

Pocket

By Shelley

Letting my quirk out one post at a time.

31 Comments

  1. Reply

    Dr B

    Well said Shelley! It’s why I’m a Blog Award Free site, there’s one born every minute! Learn from it, you are gathering friends on your blog, just work out who we are. As we say in the U.K., keep calm and carry on!

    1. Reply

      Shelley

      Thanks, Dr. B! I eventually get things…! I appreciate your words of wisdom!

  2. Reply

    7start

    Thank you for this confession. Will learn a lot from this.

    1. Reply

      Shelley

      You’re welcome! Thank you, too, for reading my confession!

  3. Reply

    Success Inspirers' World

    Thanks Dr. Shelley! Blogging is a whole world of its own with each one having a reason to blog. Those awards take time indeed. I try some. I even created one myself. All is fun and trying to get more people pay attention to you. Some will come and stay; some will come and go. Some may click by accident but end up being best blogging companions. It’s complex really. I am delighted to be sharing with you. I did enjoy your post.

    1. Reply

      Shelley

      Thank you, your thoughts are appreciated! It is REALLY complex! The fun is, like you said, knowing your own reason for blogging and getting to know others in the process. I’m glad you enjoyed my post, I enjoy reading yours, too!

  4. Reply

    frazzledagain

    Ha, I didn’t know anyone actually wins the nomination. I thought they go on forever. I think the idea really is just getting bloggers to know one another, find new bloggers and they find you. I did it twice and just don’t have the time to do anymore. Don’t take it as being gullible. When I did the nominations and passed it on, I really thought about who I wanted to nominate, thusr eally getting to know the bloggers. Take it all in stride and conti ue reading other blogs and commenting. That part is letting bloggers know you are reading, they like your comments as much as you like theirs. I think I got three more noms last week and I just thanked them very much and declined. It is good for new bloggers that are really trying to increase traffic. The blogging university is great though. I took the two week one, it is very helpful.

    1. Reply

      Shelley

      LOL – one of the sites I read did actually have a winner! They do appear to go on forever though! I appreciate you reading this post and taking time to share your thoughts! I’m positive there will be much more to learn and to write about in the future! Thank you for being so supportive!

      1. Reply

        frazzledagain

        I have lost a couple of followers along the way. Sometimes they realized I didn’t write a lot about the things they are interested in I guess. That will happen to us too when we fine tune who we follow. There is a lot to learn but I find the blogging university is the most authentic way of learning all about that. Also doing the daily word prompt…never thought I would or could write daily but I love it. Following Smorgasbord – Variety is the spice of life blog is great as well. She has the Saturday watering hole for bloggers to attach their link to one of their posts, also “ First Fridays” for new bloggers or posting an overlooked post, you can put your link in her comments and introduce yourself. She willr ead your post and comment, plus other bloggers will read it as well. She has millions of followers and is part of WordPress. She is legit. And very nice and helpful.

        1. Reply

          Shelley

          Thank you, I love all your great tips! So much to learn…! That’s good though, I enjoy learning new things.

          1. frazzledagain

            I’ll be in touch!

          2. Shelley

            Great, I appreciate you keeping in touch!

  5. Reply

    withasideofburnttoast

    Hi Shelley. I really liked your post because, funny enough, I glanced at my stats the other night. I started down the rabbit hole. Not really looking at total views so much as comparing ‘likes’ versus ‘views.’ Why didn’t some people like it who were reading through? I was placing a bit of stock in the ratios. I also was considering blog titles. I’ve noticed this might be my form of “clickbait” in a way. Unintentionally creating a group of words to catch the eye. I like that you shared on the award you received and your considerations. This is important to think about, but also in the way that it’s important to get away from the stats. I keep reminding myself not to base my ability to write on readership reaction completely. It’s helped me feel happier this way. Don’t mind my novel comment – this post just hit close to home! Thank you for sharing all of this! Clickbait is a real consideration in today’s social media.

    1. Reply

      Shelley

      Hi Lauren, thank you, I appreciate you sharing your thoughts on the post as well as thoughts about blogging. All the nuances and complexities take us down rabbit holes no doubt. That’s a great way to put it by the way! You’re so right about what we should and shouldn’t base our abilities on. It is nice to know our words are appreciated, it is even better when we appreciate our own words and efforts! Thanks again!

      1. Reply

        withasideofburnttoast

        Of course – you’re very welcome! It really is complicated at times. Who would have thought – blogging? Wouldn’t it be simpler? But yes, focusing on the happiness with writing and the freedom to share. Appreciating and knowing, on any scale, that your words are appreciated. 🙂

        1. Reply

          Shelley

          I know…I sure thought blogging should be easy (at first, but now I know better!) You have a great outlook on it, that’s over half the battle!!

          1. withasideofburnttoast

            Thank you! I mean to keep up that outlook, even when things get busy and challenging this spring semester. : ) Here’s to our winning the battle on blogging!

          2. Shelley

            You’re welcome! I’m here to keep cheering you on!

          3. withasideofburnttoast

            Thank you so much for the vote of confidence! It really means a lot to me!

          4. Shelley

            You’re welcome!! 🙂

  6. Reply

    nomaddernomadder

    Shelley, we are both in the same boat, per se. When I received the perceived “award” and realized what was required, at first I balked. Then I read through the questions and thought they seemed interesting enough, so I went for it. The part I was not thrilled about was nominating other bloggers, knowing they might not be thrilled with the “award’s” requirements, it’s a daunting list.
    I am also picking my way through blogging, all its lingo, and I’ve already broken blogging “rules of decorum”, to my dismay. I’ve read everything I can get my hands on about this site and I am going back over it again. I finally got my web-page set up correctly because of it. Also, I found The Daily Post’s “First Friday” and “Community Pool” where you can link any of your posts for the community to scrutinize. I picked up quite a few “followers” there.
    Your posts are great! We’ll get there.
    Donna

    1. Reply

      Shelley

      Donna, thank you for sharing your thoughts! There are so many rules about blogging that have changed over time, just like Word Press. Nice, I’m glad you were able to see the silver lining in being able to find things to fix about your site. Thank you, too, for the suggestions. Your posts are great, and yes, we will get there! Take care, and keep on keeping on!

  7. Reply

    Edmark M. Law

    The way I see those “awards” is that they’re good for new bloggers to connect and interact with other bloggers. I’ve never posted any of these award nominations on my blog since I have figured out that if I make an award post, I’d receive many more of them in the future.

    The downside of these awards is they may look like chain letters (asking the nominees to nominate a bunch of bloggers) or even spams. Also, it takes a lot of time to find your nominees. Thus, some bloggers choose to just ignore them, which is alright. Personally, I can’t make myself to do that. So as a courtesy to those who nominate me, I thank them in the comments section and also answer their questions.

    As for clickbaits, everyone does that one way or another I suppose. Anyway, all the best clickbaits are on Youtube.

    1. Reply

      Shelley

      Thank you for sharing your thoughts and fun facts about blogging and YouTube. I agree we all use click baits in one way or another, some ways are better than others. There are nice parts of social media and meeting other bloggers is one I do find fun to focus on. Thanks for stopping by to read my post!

      1. Reply

        Edmark M. Law

        Indeed. Some are praiseworthy while others are just disingenuous and misleading.

        Yes, connecting with other people that you normally wouldn’t be able to find is a great advantage of social media.

        You’re welcome.

        1. Reply

          Shelley

          Excellent thoughts, thank you for sharing, I appreciate it!

  8. Reply

    Winnie

    Hi Shelley! I had the same feeling as you. I used to peek at my stats too but not anymore. I felt stressed doing it especially waiting for someone to like my post. Now, I just post what I feel and read other blog post. I click the like button and comment. I’ll be your loyal follower 😉. I love your blog and I love talking to you. By the way, I nominated you for the Mystery Blogger Award 😊

    1. Reply

      Shelley

      Hi Winnie! I think all bloggers, at some point in time, check their stats and try to figure out what they can do differently to change them up. Great advice you have on not to worry and just post what we feel and read other posts. I appreciate you following my blog, I love reading and following your blog and talking to you too! I appreciate the nomination for the Mystery Blogger Award. I trust you know my appreciation for the nomination (which is great, I’m touched by your thoughts of my blog) will be in the form of “Aw, that’s so nice, but at this time in my blogging world, I need to respectfully decline.” You did a great job on your acceptance post and other blogger nominations. Your questions are fun too!

      1. Reply

        Winnie

        Thank you for your honesty Shelley. I understand. Thank you for that wonderful comment. I appreciate it 😊

        1. Reply

          Shelley

          You’re welcome! Thank you, too, for your understanding!

          1. Winnie

            You’re welcome 😊

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