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Friday, March 28, 2014

Do You Blog? Have you joined the #atozchallenge yet? #blogging


Today, in the last week before  the A to Z challenge, Csenge Zalka from #TeamDamyanti is here to tell you the basics.

If you haven't heard it yet: As a blogger, one of the best ways to boost your audience is to sign up for the A to Z Challenge!

Every blogger gets a kick out of writing, but a large part of the fun during the month of April is discovery: Hopping from blog to blog, reading about things you never knew before, making connections that will last well beyond the 26 days of the challenge.

Whether you're joining today, or you've signed up long ago, here's a quick and dirty list of things that might help:

1. Start visiting early.

The list is already up! You can get an early jump on visiting your friendly A to Z neighbors, and follow the ones you find particularly interesting.

2. Don't overdo it.

Set a comfortable number of blogs per day that you want to visit. Keep in mind that you will spend more time on some than others, especially later in the month when there is a lot more to read! Make it a number aroun 5, but make sure that these are 5 new blogs, not some that you have visited before!

3. Visit later in the day.

Some people post later than others, because of time zones or personal schedules. If you set out very early in the day, you might run into blogs that have not updated yet. If you give them some time, you can get the fresh letters from everyone!

4. Visit those that visit you.

This is really important, people! If someone visits you and leaves a comment, go check out where they came from! It's common courtesy, and also can take you to blogs that you might have missed otherwise. It can be the start of a beautiful blogging friendship!

5. Make your visiting routine diverse.

You might be drawn to a particular kind of blog – books, crafts, travel, etc. - but make sure to give a chance to some that are outside your comfort zone. Go crazy on the categories, that's why we have them!

6. Mark the blogs you like.

Click Follow, or bookmark the blogs you especially like, anything you need to do to make sure you will find your way back to them later.

7. Give some extra love to the smaller blogs!

We have a special list for blogs that have less than 100 followers. Make sure to check it out and help them grow!

8. Don't start from the top.

If everyone stars with Blog No. 1, people at the bottom of the list will have a disadvantage, and you might miss some great blogs that have higher numbers. Start at your own name and work your way down. Or, alternately, jump around like a crazy caffeinated frog. Believe me, it is fun.


If you haven't done so yet, sign up for the A to Z Challenge, trust me, you'll love it.

Look up a detailed checklist for the A to Z challenge, join the Facebook page, become part of the Facebook group, follow the challenge via @AprilA2Z on twitter, and check out some quick social media tips to help your blog.

48 comments:

  1. I guess I am the smallest blog still only one follower but am good and ready to run! Maybe I still have some bloggermatics to do for a follow friendly link?

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    1. Hey Marie! Leaving a direct link to your blog when you comment would help others follow you back. Maybe you could try adding Google Friend Connect as well? I find that useful for my own blog.

      anna
      Deeply Shallow

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    2. Couldn't find your blog but following on Twitter and Google+, will look for your posts there.

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    3. Welcome to A to Z! :) You will see your blog grow through the challenge. I hope you will have a lot of fun!

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  2. just heard about the challenge and I'm throwing together my sign up post right now-stay tuned :D

    Finley Jayne
    http://finleyjaynesbookshelves.blogspot.com/

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    1. Welcome to A to Z! I like your theme, it sounds sinfully fun to read :) I'll be checking back!

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  3. I think I have been jumping round like a caffeinated frog. Maybe I should start being more systematic. My head hurts! Lol :)

    anna
    Deeply Shallow

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  4. That's a good guideline. Will surely be following and discovering new blogs :-)

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    Replies
    1. I'm glad you like it :) Visiting blogs is half of the fun in April :) And you can start early and look at everyone's theme reveal posts!

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  5. I have joined and I can't wait for the challenge to begin !I'm so excited :D

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    1. We are too! :) I'm obsessively re-editing my scheduled posts for the first couple of days to make them prettier. Welcome to A to Z!

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  6. Joined the challenge. Waiting eagerly for April. Great tips! Thank you!

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    1. You are most welcome! And also welcome to A to Z :) Have fun!

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  7. Great tips, especially starting with your name and working down or up. I like that my browser remembers which links I've clicked on and the link is a shade different than a link I haven't visited.

    I found some gems in the past in travel and lifestyle which have nothing to do with the usual writing and book blogs I usually read. Travel blogs with photos = gold.

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    1. I love travel blogs as well! :) I like hopping between Travel, Gaming and Misc. This year, I am also going to post a mini-list for blogs on storytelling on my personal blog :) Happy A to Z!

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  8. Hi Damyanti .. thanks for reminding us all of the basics .. and here's to a very happy A-Z .. there's plenty of us around who've done this a few times - so we're all here to help..

    Visiting other bloggers is the way to go - that encourages them to visit you ... I'm sure I'm going to make some good friends once again this year .. cheers Hilary

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  9. Fantastic tips to make the most out April! I can NOT stress enough the importance in leaving a link to your blog when you comment!! We ALL want to visit YOU, especially if you leave a comment! Use this handy hyperlink guide, slap it on your desktop, copy & paste to your heart's content and watch the magic of instant connections:)

    Text You Want to Show Here

    WriterlySam
    Resident Bartender for the A to Z Theme Reveal Party!




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  10. I always leap about the list in a random way, but I have noticed in the past that if blogs get zapped for any reason and everyone moves up then the list from that point resets and I cant tell where I have been. I should therefore be logical about it, but I just cant help leaping about.

    And you are trying to make me be friendly again; I can tell . . . . . I feel the A to Z needs at least one grumpy unsociably chap so I bags its me . . . touch wood cross fingers, whisper magic spells in a dark corner. . . . . .HAH AH HAH AH HAH HAHha ha ha hahahah aha ha ha ha

    Oooo sorry distracted again

    Rob Z Tobor

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    1. Just keep an eye on where you are in the list... to know how many places every other blog has been zapped

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    2. I am now picturing odd English gentlemen jumping about poking things with sticks. But, I'm not picturing you, because what is everything about you? Jeeze.

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  11. I jump all over the list too. Whenever I go back to the sign up list the following day, the blogs I've visited are a different colour than the ones I haven't visited, which has made it way easier to visit a lot of new ones.

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    1. Yes, mine works that way too. And sometimes I just pick numbers at random :)
      Happy A to Z!

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  12. Can you add my blog to the special list? I have definitely have less than 100 followers!

    http://5heartsonefamily.blogspot.com/

    Thanks!

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  13. What I've been doing before the challenge starts is going down the list starting at the first blog. Over time, I've gone through over a hundred blogs. Being picky about what I read, I've found only two I want to follow. Maybe I'll find a few more soon.

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    1. I think that is normal; there are many different blogs out there. One thing for sure, out of more than 1700, there will be some good things in there for everyone :) It's okay to pick and choose which ones you stick with.

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  14. Thanks for the tips, appreciate you !

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  15. Hello, I have tried to follow @AprilA2Z on twitter and get this message: “You have been blocked from following this account at the request of the user.”
    Is there something else I need to do?

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  16. Great post, Csenge! The "take it easy" part felt reassuring--with my laptop still out of commission, I'm beginning to stress :D Excellent tips all around!

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  17. "Today, the last day before the A to Z challenge" - The challenge doesn't begin until April 1. Don't scare me like that. Ha Ha!

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  18. Last day before the challenge? Did my calendar break? Oh no!

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  19. This comment has been removed by the author.

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    1. I'm bookmarking and using Safari's reading list this year. I'm still looking for some of the blogs I liked from last year. I wish more people would leave links in their posts, but I remember my first year, there was so much to learn...
      Reflex Reactions

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    2. Yes, I am trying to find a better way of keeping track of the ones I like. I might just make a folder for them in my Bookmarks. Not all of the blogs have Follow links up yet, sadly.
      Happy A to Z!

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  20. Awesome advice! And yes, Jolie, we do start Tuesday! Just checking if you're paying attention :-)
    Well done, Csenge!
    Tina @ Life is Good
    A to Z Team @ Blogging From A to Z April Challenge 2014

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    1. Thank you! I am glad you found it useful :) I can't wait for the April visiting wave to start :) Happy A to Z!

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  21. Got it. Thanks for the info. Off to discover and follow new blogs.

    Latest Blog Post: #AtoZChallenge Theme Reveal & an April Skip for #IWSG

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    1. You are most welcome! I hope you will discover a lot of new and exciting things! There are a lot of great blogs to picks from this year :)

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  22. As someone who has worked discreetly in the background via my satirical alternatives to the alphabet challenge, I have been there for those who were struggling.

    I would never get involved with a challenge that hijacks the blogging world. Still, as always, I wish those who participate, participate for all the right reasons. Be symbolic of the sharing, caring community and not use this as a way to be self centred.

    In peace,

    Gary, the official anti-A to Z spokesman.

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  23. Good luck everyone! "The horses are on the track!"

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  24. I will give this a try. My blog is MIhttp://bettyjcrowe-throughmybackdoor.blogspot.com/

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  25. Am joining in... http://dipisblog.blogspot.in/

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  26. I think that five is a good number. Obviously this will extend beyond April!
    One issue that I found is when people comment using a Google Plus profile, it can be difficult to find their blogs. Maybe that's just me. I'm not particularly well versed in Google Plus.

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  27. Is it too late to join? I'm late to this party!

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