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Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Susan: How to Help Bloggers Connect Across Platforms

Please welcome Susan, who joined us this year for her first A-Z Challenge. She has an interesting proposal for next year – check it out!

As a relatively new blogger looking for something to write about I came across the Blogging from A to Z challenge just at the right time. I had been blogging for about 8 months on my first blog, Sue's considered trifles which was intended to be the basis of a book on the English language from an enthusiastic amateur. I had sometimes deviated from my original intention and blogged about other subjects of in a different style.

At the beginning of Holy Week I had started posting to a new blog, Sue's Trifles in order to blog in whatever way I chose, while working on my original blog in a more consistent manner. I had already created and published two posts about letters of the alphabet, P and R and had begun making notes about other letters. I was considering taking the words PRECIOUS and WALK which do not have any letters in common. 

Precious is a word used to mean valued or special. Isaiah 28:16 is one example of its use in the Bible. However that was only going to use twelve out of the twenty six letters in the alphabet. An A to Z challenge was right up my street. I was at a slight disadvantage during the challenge as my blog was so new.

I also found that it was difficult to direct other A to Z bloggers to my A to Z posts. My username on WordPress is more closely connected to my other blog. I have learned a lot during and since the challenge about using widgets to customise my blog. I have also improved my Gravatar profile to help with this. I also created a page with a list of links to my A to Z posts, having seen a similar one on another blog.

I use facebook a bit, but have very few friends on facebook and don’t often look at links to it from blogs. However I set up a facebook page for my blogs during April. When I published post U, I had already prepared and scheduled my posts for the rest of the challenge, so I had a bit of “spare” time and discovered the facebook page for the A to Z community. I posted links to my posts from Q to the end of the alphabet on the appropriate threads there, but did not seem to have any additional traffic from this source, although I looked at some posts myself using links from the same threads.

Now as a blogger on the WordPress platform, it is simple for me to post comments on other WordPress blogs and keep track of the answers without flooding my email inbox. However, I found that to comment on other blogs, whether on blogspot or other web-sites required a great deal of patience, perseverance and ingenuity. Even then it often did not work. I had thought carefully about what I wanted to say, typed it and it either gave a page not found error, or just failed. I learned to copy my comments before trying to post them, but even so my failure rate was very high.

So here is my proposal. For bloggers who really want to interact with others on different blogging platforms, why not set up a facebook page for your blog. (You need to have a personal facebook account first.) The help pages on facebook allowed me to do this, so I’m sure you can manage it too! Then if you find a blogger you wish to give a comment to, use your facebook page identity to comment on the facebook page of the other blogger.

I’d like to do the A to Z challenge again next year. I have found some interesting blogs and wonderful bloggers through it. There are links to some of their blogs in my reflections post and on my links page. I have also learned a great deal about blogging and social networking. What do you think? Have you already set up a facebook page for your blog(s)? Did you use the A to Z community page on facebook? And how difficult is it for non-WordPress bloggers to comment on WordPress blogs?


  1. I wouldn't go back to Facebook not even to look up some news of a friend. Had a lot of problems a wee while ago. Having done all four A to Z Challenges I am quite content to carry on as I have been.

    You wrote a very interesting post and I'm sure your idea would be a boon to Face book fans.


  2. I am sorry you have had problems with facebook. I am very wary of it myself. Thank you for reading and commenting. Sue

  3. My blog is linked to my author page on facebook so all my followers get to see what I'm writing about. I do get a few people popping over from facebook which is great :)
    Suzy's Facebook Page

  4. Thanks for commenting. I've had a look at your blog, your guest post here and your facebook page. (I am trying to visit the blogs of all the people who comment on any of my posts.) You're obviously keen and organised. It's interesting how blogs evolve over time. I expect to reach my first blogging birthday this month.
    How did you build up your likes on facebook? Sue

  5. Hi Sue. Thanks for checking out my pages.
    Many of my FB likes come from being a blog tour host as well as from fans, of course ;)

  6. I rarely leave comments on a wordpress blog because of the difficulty of leaving one. I don't have a word press and I don;t want it connected to my personal FB account. So I just read and leave. Is there an easier way??

  7. My blog is hosted by wordpress, and so far I've had no complaints about comments. If the user/commenter is signed into either Google or their blog, leaving a comment shouldn't be a problem, right?
    Sorry to hear some bloggers avoid certain sites. Omitting blogs based on hosting sites is a sure way to miss out on a large number of wonderful blogs out there, in my opinion.
    I have a personal Facebook page ... nothing linked to my blog yet. Perhaps the comment problem has to do with the blogger's settings more than anything else?

  8. Paula, if you set up a facebook page there is the opportunity to use a second identity to post on facebook. I still haven't worked out all the details of linking between this and my blog, but it does have its uses if you are trying to keep your public and private personas separate. Once you have logged into your personal facebook account, you are able to switch between the two identities when you post. Your likes are kept separate as well. Thanks for commenting. Sue

  9. Silvia, I have had lots of problems trying to comment on blogs which are not hosted by wordpress. Some use captcha and slow down the commenting process that way. Other times, I have typed in a long comment only to have it fail to post. I now make a habit of copying my comment before pressing the publish button just in case the gremlins are waiting to steal my thoughts! Thanks for commenting. Sue

  10. Sorry, I'm not on Facebook and have no plans to join. I'm spread thin already between blogging and Twitter. Sorry you had so many problems with commenting.

  11. Alex, I have looked at your blog and you are obviously a very busy person. I'm not on Twitter - can't really see any advantages there. I wrote another post about why I joined facebook Sue

  12. Hi Sue and Tina - you've opened an interesting debate here ..

    I'm going to get a FB page to tie in with my new projects - still behind closed doors!

    However I struggle with Disqus commenting attached to Blogger blogs ... and if the posts go out to G+ - it's awful ...

    It's being allowed to keep things separate - would be kind! Not you .. them geeks in California!

    Still it will be interesting to see where this leads us - and Alex saying he doesn't do FB, but does do Twitter .. is interesting ..

    Being thinly stretched is a challenge .. I hope to only progress out once my 'journey' plan is in place - eliminating too many hassles along the way ..

    Let's see where your thoughts lead us, Sue ...

    Tina - I know you'll keep a tab open for this ..

    Cheers to you all - Hilary

  13. Thank you for reading and commenting, Hilary. I'll look out for your new project. I have visited your blog a few times, but I don't think I've commented. Perhaps I'll add it to those which turn up in my WordPress reader. I've rather a lot of them and recently I haven't had time to read all the posts.
    I wonder what the silent majority is thinking about this idea! Sue

  14. Great topic, well-covered, Sue! As always! :) It took me a full minute to find the space to leave a comment here, and if it wasn't your post, I wouldn't have bothered. I see what you mean about cross-blogging platforms.

    I have to admit that when people say that they want people to read their blogs, but they aren't willing to put in the time to make it available to readers and easy for commentors, I'm confused. Especially since you can just automatically post to FB from any blogging platform. Oh well, to each their own I guess.

    Great post!

  15. Hi rarasaur, Thanks for making the effort to read the post and comment on it. See you on facebook next??? Sue

  16. I will not join Facebook for any reason, including to make a page for my blog. I believe that doing so would mean that I support their company, their tactics and how they do business and I refuse to do so.

    I do, however, understand how Facebook can be useful for those who find it easier to connect to other bloggers and find new blogs to read. Wordpress is a different animal, tho. I am a mainly non-wordpress blogger who doesn't find it difficult to comment on Wordpress just depends on the blog and it's up to bloggers (no matter what platform they are on such as Wordpress, Blogger, Typead, etc.) to make the commenting process as easy as possible for their readers, by giving them user-friendly options to comment on their blog.

    My ease of leaving Wordpress comments, however, may also have to do with me having a wordpress just makes it easier to follow blogs that way if desired, but I'd rather use Delicious and Pinterest to follow blogs.

    Blogging is a big world. I say, the more options that we have a bloggers, the better :)

    We can all blog best when we do what works for us...even if that includes (*sigh*) using Facebook, lol!

    @MadlabPost on Twitter

  17. Nicole, Thank you for your interesting comment. I know nothing about Delicious and Pinterest - perhaps I should research them! I looked at your blog and found it very attractive, although I am a book person rather than a film person.
    As you say there are lots of options for bloggers and by learning more about them we can choose what works best for us. Sue

  18. Hi Tina and Sue, Good post and you opened a great discussion, thoug I have accounts at facebook some how I very zeldom go there instead I prefer Goole+ and twiter, of course I send my blog post urls there too.
    Thanks Tina and Sue.
    Keep inform,

    1. Tina, pl. Correct my typo. I mean "seldom" ๐Ÿ˜Š

  19. This comment has been removed by the author.

  20. Thanks for commenting Phil and for visiting my blog. I have replied to the comment you made there. Sue


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