This post is completely honest and real and might offend some people. Read at your own risk!
So, just yesterday I was SO ecstatic that I finally reached 100 followers and even mentioned it in my last post.
But... I log on today and notice that I only have 99. Sad. :(
I'm not sure if I'm doing something wrong but I've had quite a few people unfollow me lately. I'd guess around 10 people total. It kinda hurts :(
Ever since I started making serious efforts with my blog in November I've learned a few etiquette lessons that exist in the blog world, and have realized that not everyone understands. To me, this is networking with real people doing really amazing things. I love being a part of it and love getting to know the individuals behind the words.
I admit in the beginning I was a little naive with this blogger world. I didn't know how to gain followers. So I went to Blogger's Coffee Shop and tried advertising myself there. Nada. Then I realized there were several blog networks that I could join to expose my blog. That didn't really help either.
I noticed when I peeked around, visited other blog's followers and commenters, I found some truly remarkable people. I started reading, commenting, and following to let them know I existed. Who would have thought genuinely reading blogs and leaving sincere comments would help me gain followers? :)
I know everyone is trying to gain more followers, but there is a polite way to do it and an impolite way to do it. I think a lot of people try to find the easy way out with these copy & paste comments. It's so rude! Really... I'd rather you not even say anything. I get excited when people comment, and if it's just some thoughtless remark, it's disappointing and disrespectful.
There's also that uncomfortable obligation to follow someone when they follow you. And it's even more uncomfortable when they blatantly ask you to follow them back.
Let me tell you a story that truly shocked me. I recently had someone leave those rude kind of comments and a link to their blog asking me to follow them. She had a nice blog and I liked it, but I was turned off by the way she went about it. I gave it some time, and after she repeatedly left me comments I decided to be nice, follow, and leave a sincere comment thanking her. Guess what happened? She UNFOLLOWED me two days later. WTF? That's sooo snaky!
Now, I only follow people if I'm truly intrigued with their blog's content and if it has something to do with my industry and interests. I would hope they follow back, but if not, no big deal. I don't need follows out of pity.
To be completely honest, there are times when I visit a follower's blog and I'm just not interested. Like for example, Christian blogs. I completely respect your love for God, really, but I'm agnostic and I don't have an interest reading about your religious views. Are you going to hold that against me? Does this make you not want to read my blog anymore because I don't read yours? Don't you want followers that share the same interest and will leave you insightful comments?
This leaves me to conclude that some people only follow me because they want a follow back. And maybe when they found out I didn't follow them back they got pissed and unfollowed me. Or maybe I just suck... I dunno. I feel kind of high school bringing this up. I mean, the first few unfollows didn't bother me, but now it's becoming a pattern and I want to know... has this ever happened to anyone before? How do you handle it?
I just want to say to all of my followers that are reading this right now: I am SO happy that you decided to follow me, and I hope you did because you want to hear more of what I have to say, and not out of pity. I follow about 100 blogs and there are new posts filling up my reader every day. If I don't get to read your post right away... don't worry. I'm always viewing when I have time (during work, after work, during school, after school, and on weekends) and I will read your posts eventually. I try to comment on the posts that touch me with sincere heartfelt thoughts and I hope you do the same. But, I don't expect you to read and comment on every one of my posts. I understand we all have our own busy lives and just maintaining a blog can be really time consuming.
On the other hand, if that's all I am is a number to you then I would prefer you not follow me in the first place. If you don't care or haven't read my blog in ages, then please.. go ahead and unfollow me. This is a place where I need motivational support, not snaky people looking for follows.
Sorry... had to vent :/