How to make your dev blog popular?

dev blog popular

Overview

I started to blog on 02.03.2016. This was mainly in response to local Polish competition: Daj Sie Poznac. Idea was simple: write two blog posts per week about any type of project. Main question that I have asked myself, how to make your dev blog popular? I won’t tell you exactly, but I’ll share what I have experienced.

In early beginning I have defined my goal. It wasn’t about a project, but it was about blogging. When I take a look where I’m at the moment, I have wrote 23 blog posts.  In average it took me around 3 hours per post, so 69 hours. And I have produced around 50 lines of code. This would be the most expensive project ever if my goal was different. But I wanted to become recognized.

Current Statistics

dev blog popular

This table is actually the most interesting one. I have much more entries in May and much higher average. However I have been mainly writing the same amount of posts and on same topics. So what has changed?

Referrers

dev blog popular

As you can see http://dotnetomaniak.pl/ is mainly a source of my entries (it’s Polish dev blog aggregator). However there is a number of others chasing it.

I have actually started to promote my blog on https://dotnetkicks.com and Linked In in May. And then it happened.

dev blog popular

How to make your dev blog popular?

Write in English

I was thinking a lot should I write in Polish or in English. Both have a lot of advantages and disadvantages: growing local community or sharing knowledge with whole world. But if you want to make your dev blog popular…

dev blog popular

dev blog popular

As you can see US has beaten up Poland already, despite I started to promote in May, but what is even more important…

dev blog popular

… even if these are bots. It looks amazing.

Use proper referrers

In the beginning I was using only Twitter, Facebook and dotnetmaniak to promote my posts. I haven’t been using Twitter ever before, but it seems like it’s almost useless to promote your blog. There is so much noise there that I don’t believe anyone is reading everything. I know that’s harsh, but stats are stats. I assume that if I have more followers, but which came first: chicken or egg?

So the best of the best for me:

  • Reddit
  • https://dotnetkicks.com/
  • LinkedIn
  • your local aggregator

Update: Reddit is awesome, it’s really front page of the web.

Newsletter

I have only one subscriber to my mailing list. That’s me. This doesn’t work for dev community. Newsletter is waste of time if you want to make your dev blog popular.

(Use proper) Tools

That’s a hint a summary of what I have been using for now.

Blog = WordPress

You just don’t need anything else.

WordPress = JetPack

JetPack is a plugin for WordPress. WordPress mostly doesn’t exist with this plugin. Just install. There are other ways to replace it, but if you are starting just do it.

Publicize

Have I sad that Twitter & Facebook were useless? In a way it wasn’t that effective as I thought, but it doesn’t cost you anything.

Publicize allows you to automatically publish your post to all social networks. Yes it includes Twitter on Facebook. So even if it doesn’t add much value, it doesn’t cost you any time.

SEO

Another plugin to wordpress which helps you to write proper posts that will be easily found by search engines.

I have no clue what are “unknown search terms” but it looks like someone is finding me there.

dev blog popular

Google Analytics

Enable them when you start. You have much detailed stats there then in JetPack including localization etc. I have done it in May, so these stats may be misleading for now.

Summary

Thanks to all visitors. I hope you enjoyed your time here.

Please come again.

 

 

7 thoughts on “How to make your dev blog popular?

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  • June 1, 2016 at 8:09 am
    Permalink

    Nice post.
    I wouldn’t agree with your view on twitter – it’s quite a good source, but requires you to build up a group of followers. I managed to increase their number from around 40 to 150 in just a few weeks 🙂
    I see you didn’t use reddit at all – for me that was definitely the best source of audience – highly recommended!

    How do you promote yourself on dotnetkicks.com? As far as I can see they’re selecting content themselves and you can’t post your links there?

    Reply
    • June 1, 2016 at 9:07 am
      Permalink

      For Twitter this is what I was saying. You need to have a group of followers to have a proper move there. However the real question is how to build them in first place. So… how did you do it 🙂 ?
      I’ll check reddit, thanks for hint.

      For DotNetKicks I have registered and I have Submit button on top. I had similar problem in the beginning but after time it appeared. I have no clue why and how.

      Reply
      • June 1, 2016 at 9:11 am
        Permalink

        cool – thanks – they probably approve accounts first.

        With twitter it’s a little dirty but works. You have to start following people you’d like to follow you. A good portion of them will follow you back 😉 You can use twitter suggestions or go through followers of other people from the industry. It’s also good to tweet regularly. You can use buffer to schedule tweets. I post interesting articles I find. Some people retweet them and that’s another chance to get new followers 🙂

        Reply
        • June 2, 2016 at 10:34 am
          Permalink

          Thanks for Reddit… 553 entries in a day after a post there.

          As far as Twitter is concerned, my problem is that if I follow more people I’m not able to review all tweets. This leads to question… how many entries you have from Twitter? You may have a lot of followers, but does it actually transfer easily into movement on your blog?

          Reply
  • June 2, 2016 at 10:45 am
    Permalink

    It’s not a lot – especially comparing to reddit… But I think I need to build a bigger audience and the results will come with time.

    Reply
  • June 9, 2016 at 1:58 pm
    Permalink

    Hi Michal,
    you have to try medium.com as well.
    keep posting!

    Reply

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