Discussion: What Makes You Follow a Blog?

I know we just had a discussion on Friday, but this is more open-ended than my other one about book review request forms where I was specifically soliciting advice.

This is something I’ve been thinking about for a while.  Why do some people follow one blog and others don’t?  What makes you want to follow a blog?

Obviously subject matter and your level of interest in it is important.  I, for example, wouldn’t follow a blog devoted to football because I really dislike football.  That only makes sense.  But sometimes I’ve unfollowed blogs despite the fact that the subject matter is great.  Sometimes it’s because the blogger never responds to comments, never posts on a regular schedule and/or gets boring/loses that spark that made me follow the blog in the first place.

So what I want to know now is this: What makes you follow a blog?  What things do you look for in a blog before you decide to follow it?  Are there any follower dealbreakers for you?

15 comments

  1. storytimewithbuffy

    I will follow a blog if the person writes about things that interest me. I like to see personality and it’s important that they respond to comments. I don’t like to feel like I’m just another statistic pushing their blog forward. Something that will make me unfollow a blog is if the person says hateful things. Aggressive religious, political and personal views expressed in a way that is disrespectful/disparaging/belittling are not welcome in my world. There are so many hateful people in the world and I like to support people who are nice, friendly and respectful to others. The world would be a much better place if we all were just nicer to each other!

    • Carrie Slager

      I’m with you on the hateful things! In the past I’ve followed several bloggers and I really did enjoy their blogs, but some of them wrote in a manner that I don’t find acceptable. A little anger is fine, but hatred is definitely crossing the line for me. I didn’t follow them to hear their thoughts on that religion or this political party or how evil [x] group is. I followed them because I thought they had something interesting to say.

  2. jameswilliaml

    Interest is just part of it. I look for interesting subject material that will stimulate me and peek my interest. Which is all long hand for: it makes me want to comment. I don’t just want to absorb, but interact.

    Being informative, being funny, being controversial and sticking one’s neck out, all these things are important to me to find something to follow.

    • Carrie Slager

      That’s very true. A topic can interest you but if the blogger has nothing new or interesting to say about the matter then I’m not as likely to follow their blog. Being informative, funny and/or controversial are all things I look for when I want to follow a blog.

  3. literaryvittles

    The first thing I look at is writing quality. If the top post on the blog’s homepage is riddled with syntactical errors and grammatical mistakes, then I assume that the person doesn’t care enough about his or her blog to proofread. Next, I skim a few posts to see if the author has an interesting perspective on the topics they choose to write about. It’s more about quality than it is about subject matter, at least for me.

    • Carrie Slager

      That’s certainly an interesting take on things and I find myself doing that sometimes as well. I read blogs that have nothing to do with books or really anything I’m interested in, but it really helps when the author writes in an engaging fashion. Of course grammar and spelling are important as well. I won’t pretend I’m perfect (because I’m not) but I really do try to write in a coherent, grammatically correct fashion.

  4. LillianC

    Common interests are what catch my eye, then I look for a fresh take on the information or a personal style that I find appealing. An attractive, easy to read layout is a plus. I spend so much time writing and reading that a blog layout I have to strain to read won’t get my repeat visits.

    • Carrie Slager

      Yes, clean layouts are a must! I personally like minimalist themes, much like the Coraline one I’m currently using. My eyes strain if I look at a computer screen for too long so I don’t like to strain them even further by trying to read pink lettering on something like a black background.

      Of course my interest in the topic and how the person writes about that topic have a very strong effect as well. I like to see a little passion once in a while. I want to know that this person is writing because they’re passionate about a subject and not just because they want big stats or some money! 🙂

  5. Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction

    I follow book blogs almost exclusively and I have to confess that I follow way more blogs than I have time to keep up with. So, once I’m following, what makes me actually READ a blog post? If you are reviewing a book that catches my eye or if you have a blog post title that interests me, I’ll check it out. And I always try to visit the blogs of anyone who comments on one of my posts. (That’s how I ended up here today and I found several posts that interested me!) 🙂

    Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction

  6. Abria @ Read. Write. Discuss.

    For me it’s usually personality or trendsetting. There are so many book blogs out there that I could probably get the same content that blogger A is producing from blogger B, though not necessarily at the same time. But if blogger A is friendly, genial, a good networker, etc., I’m more likely to follow. I follow the “big” blogs because I know they have the most influence when it comes to trends in the blogosphere, and I want to make informed decisions about whether it’s right for my blog to follow suit.

    And, honestly, good design is a factor too. If a blogger is still using the template that came with their installation of WordPress and hasn’t customized a single thing, I wonder about their dedication to blogging.

    • Carrie Slager

      Trendsetting is certainly one reason that I haven’t thought about. Although now that I look at it, it does make sense. Why would you want to follow someone who only follows the trends of big bloggers when you can follow someone who sets their own trends? For instance, memes. The occasional meme is fine and I love it when people do their own memes, but I simply won’t follow a blog that does all memes all the time.

      Good design is important to me. I change my header occasionally and I do like to customize my sidebar. The customization for another blogger isn’t so important to me as if they have a layout that makes sense.

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  8. Tanya Patrice

    I have a few reasons – they read books that interest me, or I like their style even if we have nothing in common! I won’t follow a blog that’s formulaic or says nothing orignal when I look through their posts.

    • Carrie Slager

      Yes, so true! Like I said in a previous comment: memes are fine, but all memes are not. I like originality; I come to a blog to hear what that blogger has to say, not to hear them imitate the big book blogs.

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