02 April 2013

On making genuine connections.

While attending BlissDom, I had the opportunity to sit & listen to some phenomenal speakers. My favorite, by far, was Jon Acuff. The guy is a genius. Anyway, he said some things (a lot of things), that really hit home with me, as a blogger.

I've already admitted that I need social media in my life. So this post is kind of an extension of that one. We are constantly checking our social media outlets, networking with other bloggers, people, and brands. Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, Vine, Google + (wait, does anyone even use Google +??). We are always plugged in. But, are we actually connecting with people?? And I mean, really connecting? I think most times, we throw a status update out there and then the replies pour in and we read them and move along. But that is not enough. People can read what we have to say all day long, but they won't really get to know us, unless we are being conversational, and trying to get to know them as well.

I have really tried to spend more time responding to comments and messages. And I don't mean just the two word "thank you!" kind of response. Those don't really mean anything and take no effort at all. Although, I am guilty of those responses sometimes when I'm holding the baby in one arm and trying to quickly send off a reply. But I'm not happy, or satisfied with that kind of interaction.

I don't know about you, but there are some blogs that I'm completely invested in. I read them daily, tweet the author, stalk follow them on Instagram...etc. And I'm not the best commenter in the world but when I do put a thoughtful comment on one of their posts, and they don't respond to me at all, like ever, it kind of hurts a little. Like, they don't care that I'm reading. I guess that some people more use their blogs as outlets, and less as a way to really network/connect with people. But still, it's always nice and appreciated when I feel like a blog favorite of mine is trying to get to know me.

Another great speaker at BlissDom, John Morgan, said: "Communicating isn't just blogging, it's talking with people and talking to people."

Do you feel like sometimes people in the blogging world like to use their platforms as a way to talk AT you? I don't like that very much, and I really hope that I don't make anyone feel that way. When I write a post, I want my readers to feel like it's a discussion, a two-way street. Because believe me, I am listening to you. I love hearing your thoughts and opinions. One thing I have learned while blogging, is that *most* bloggers are open and eager to get to know you. That's a rare quality.

Obviously, life gets crazy sometimes and we just aren't going to get to every email, tweet, or blog comment. But I  really hope I can to do better with connecting with you all. I genuinely appreciate every moment that it's taken for someone to leave a comment on one of my posts, or go out of their way to send me an e-mail.

So with that said -- let's connect! Like, really connect. 

{photo taken by One2One Network}

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41 comments:

Elisha Kemp said...

My goal also is to really connect with fellow bloggers! I am a boy mom of two and I love reading your blog :) I even follow on Instagram and you have the cutest lil boys!

www.gratefulwithtwo.blogspot.com

Liz Luscomb said...

All of this is so true, and even though I'm a small blogger, I still need to be better myself at making sure I respond in a more timely and genuine fashion.

Your efforts haven't gone unnoticed! There were times I've commented on your blog in the past and never heard a response, but lately you've responded to all of my comments. So, I'm sure if I've noticed, then I am sure others are taking notice that you are being genuine when you say you want to know your readers better.

Molly said...

I have set a goal for myself before to always respond to comments. But then life gets busy and I just don't have the time. I do try, though. Because I love it when a blogger responds to my comments so I know it makes people feel good.

Jess Burrell - Save Your Fork There's Pie said...

I've gone back and forth so. many. times. whether or not I'm just not cut out for this blogging world. I think sometimes I am definitely way too emotional about stuff whether it be someone unfollowing me or not replying back after I posted a really heartfelt comment on their blog. There's quite a few blogs that I follow that feel so unauthentic and and 'me, me, me' and I'm weaning those out STAT... I love that your blog has such a personal touch to every post that I've read so far (somewhat new follower!). Keep it real ;)

Jess Burrell - Save Your Fork There's Pie said...

Ps. Do you mind if put your button on my blog?

Mandy@ a sorta fairytale said...

Thank you, Elisha!! I love meeting other boy moms! We all just kind of "get" eachother, don't we??

Mandy@ a sorta fairytale said...

I totally get that. Life gets busy, and we just don't have time to answer every email, tweet and blog comment. Happens to me all of the time. I've just decided to try to out in a little more effort, it's definitely worth it!

Anonymous said...

It's true. It is nice to hear back from a blogger after I've taken the time to write a comment or share my own story relating to theirs. If I don't hear back, I start to regret even commenting at all! Or did they not like what I said, etc. and then I wonder why I care so much! haha.
The worst was when I asked a blogger something and she out right lied to me!! I felt like the biggest idiot and I was straight up pissed! I am still a loyal follower of hers but I was really disappointed.

Mandy@ a sorta fairytale said...

Thank you for this comment! Wish you would have left your name/e-mail so I could reply directly! By hopefully you will see this response! I know how you feel. There are a lot of blogs that I have just stopped commenting on, or reading at all because I never got a single reply. I get that people are busy, and I certainly don't expect a response to everything, but it is nice to see that a blogger is making a little effort sometimes.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the response about responses. haha. I was paranoid to leave my name or email in case that particular blogger saw this! I would have to say you, Dani from Sometimes Sweet are the best for responding. Really appreciate it!

Jordan said...

I couldn't agree more. I have a few blogs that I read every.single.post and will take the time to comment. When I never receive a response, it makes me not want to read their blog anymore. I know some blogs gets HUNDREDS of comments a day so a simple "thank you" even would make me feel like they actually cared. Thanks for sharing :)

Sarah @ MommyNotes said...

I struggle with knowing how to do this, practically! My blog is itty-bitty, but I've challenged myself to not do anything now that I couldn't sustain if it were to grow--I love receiving comments back from blogs I've commented on, but I'm not sure how I could keep commenting back if I were to receive any more comments than I already do! Anyways, I appreciate your transparency as you work through connecting more :) If you figure out the answer, let me know! ;)

Ruthie said...

Such wise words! I have a small blog and I feel like they don't really care if I don't reply, but I am trying to change that! Thanks so much for being a reply blogger :) It's always nice to know your appreciated.

Sara-Jayne said...

Hello! I'm an international stalker, er, fan, of your blog. I generally lurk because I find all too often with English blogs that the more popular bloggers will often ignore your comments ~ when you return to your comment to see if there's been any reply and you can see replies to other comments below the comment that you yourself made, it's embarrassing and belittling :( If I get comments on my blog or FB page, I'm over the moon that someone has taken the time to write and share with me. I love reading your blog, I'm so glad you wrote this :)

Mandy@ a sorta fairytale said...

I'm glad you have been lurking around, and that you love reading!! Thank you for taking the time to say hi and introduce yourself!! And I'm so sorry you've felt embarrassed and belittled before by leaving comments that went unanswered. I know that we all get busy and it really is hard to respond to everything -- but I think it's important to try! When people reach out to you, that takes a lot of thought and effort, so I want to really work to make sure those people know I'm listening! :)

Jodi said...

I love this post! And how great that you have that pic w/ your phone! Ha!

I always take it personally when I comment on a new blog and never hear back. I know some people are just busy and can't respond to 100s of comments but still like you I want to connect w/ other bloggers. I think it is so much more fun when you get to know your favorite bloggers.

Whitney H said...

I know exactly what you mean! I've been thinking about the same thing. I try to respond to all of my comments, but it's totally hard sometimes. I'm definitely going to try to be better about it though!

Anne U @ hot coffee mama said...

Love how honest you are. I really need to work on my responses. I get lazy and busy and then I put it off.

MommaBird.net said...

I've definitely noticed this and was really surprised (in a good way) & touched to see a response from a comment I made in my inbox. And for you to take the time to write a response back really means a lot to the many of us who follow along with your adventures. I've been following your blog for quite awhile, back when you only had one little toddler

Kathryn said...

This is so true! I'm known as the "serial liker", because I do take the time to see what everyone is up to and read their blogs, and love every photo on IG, but do I take the time to comment? Not as much as I would love to. So here I am, a boy mama as well, wanting to get connected. Love, love, love following you and your adventures!

Brandee said...

Ha, I was actually surprised when you commented back because so many don't. I'm the type that goes back through the archives and reads everything. Definitely a bummer when your never able to connect after all of that.

Cropped Stories said...

This is a great post and you make some very good points! I have a lot of people that drop comments but are marked as no-reply so I can't even respond back which makes feel about this big! I would hate for someone to feel like I don't care they are actually reading my content and are interested in what I have to say. Sometimes, when this happens I'll just visit there page to let them know (and if I can't contact them), I'll just drop a comment myself.

Sarah [NurseLovesFarmer.com] said...

Very well put, Mandy! I totally agree with you. In all honesty, I've stopped reading some "big" blogs because they don't seem to ever interact with their readers. I truly appreciate the blogs (such as yours!) that have taken the time to get to know their readers and are making a valiant effort to reply to comments and interact on social media with them. Sarah Halstead is absolutely wonderful for doing this too, I know she feels the same!

Sarah [NurseLovesFarmer.com] said...

It's hard not to take things personally in this blogging world...but find your niche, love it and eventually it'll just roll into place!

Mandy@ a sorta fairytale said...

Ha ha Kathryn, the "serial liker". I do that, too! And I also don't get a chance to comment as much as I'd like to. But when I do, I love hearing back! And heyyyyyy to all the Boy Mama's out there! :)

Jess Burrell - Save Your Fork There's Pie said...

Gah! True words. I've having a hard time with my 'niche' right now... Time will tell I guess..??

Lea Culp said...

A great post and I so agree, that is all about connecting. There have been several blogs that I have so enjoyed and I've left comment after comment and never heard the first response. I grow weary and end up just giving up. Commenting is a two way street and as you said, some folks are not into blogging for connecting, they are in it just for therapy for themselves. Again, a great post!

twyla myrin said...

well here's my little request... what blush are you wearing?! it's fab!!

Britney Snyder said...

I like your thinking and always love reading your posts!
I am hoping to get my own faithful readers like you one day, i am here to join the blogging world as a serious blogger, i am here for connecting!
Thanks for always being open and honest with us!

MeaganMusing said...

Connect, connect, connect. I know I could do a better job with this. It's so hard to find the time to reply to everything, but it's totally worth it. If we don't connect we're just talking and that's not nearly as much fun as having a conversation! ;) Good post Mandy!

Mandy@ a sorta fairytale said...

Thank you Britney! I really so try to be as open as possible, and I always appreciate when people take the time to comment and leave me messages. I've always tried to respond but life gets busy and I don't always get around to it. But I really so want to make more of an effort because I have met some incredible people through blogging and value those connections so much!

Look forward to getting to know you better!

Shavonda said...

Love this post. I love that you've addressed this in a genuine way. Im a sorta newbie blogger and im at the point where my blog is starting to get a little more attention everyday. Im so humbled by the fact that people actually read my blog, and am even more humbled when they comment. I try my hardest to reply to all my comments. Its just so important. I think for me the hardest part is to have been following a particular blog from almost the beginning, be ecstatic for them when they grow and become wildly popular, and then feel like they no longer have time to reply back to you yet they take the time to leave a lengthy reply to a fellow popular blogger who's commented on the same post. That is rather hurtful.

Nikki said...

Very good post!! I agree about becoming invested in the blogs we read. When I signed on earlier blogger said that I didn't follow any blogs. I immediately paniced! Was so and so going to have the baby today? How is so and so doing after their surgery? And you can't forget so and so was going to post pictures from their daughters first birthday party today! Ahhhh! Luckily I was able to get them all back when I signed in and signed out. But it did cause a panic! I feel like I connect with people and I look forward to the things they right and the stories they share!

I tagged you in a truths post that if you have time to do, it would be nice to learn some truths about you. It was the first time I had ever been tagged in anything so I was excited to keep it going!

http://niksynikki.blogspot.com/

Mandy@ a sorta fairytale said...

Thank you Nikki! I get super invested in blogs, too. When google reader announces they were going away, immediately I panicked. "How am I going to keep up on my favorite blogs!?" Luckily I realized there were other reader options out there. But yah I totally feel like I know people through their blogs, and I always appreciate when they take the time to reply.

Oh! And I read your latest Truth post. You have never been to the west coast?? You gotta come. It's fun over here :)

Valerie Scott said...

I love that you try to respond to comments, in all honesty I continue reading and commenting on your posts because I feel that you genuinely appreciate the comment and I feel comfortable here. I have a very small blog but I make every effort to comment back to make sure they know I appreciate it. I blog because it is something I enjoy and the fact that someone finds my little blog interesting enough to leave a comment puts a smile on my face. I love reading your blog and following your IG. I love feeling connected.

Natalie said...

I officially have a blog crush on you after reading this.

SewSara said...

I like Natalie's comment above :)
Thanks for keeping it real and making the effort to connect with people.
I, too, love connecting with people and love it when I get a comment or a like on instagram. Especially if I make a blog post and spent a lot of time on it, it really feels good to have someone make a thoughtful comment.
I love meeting new people and appreciate when people are REAL.
You're awesome! Thanks for commenting and following me on instagram and stuff, too :)

Kim Cunningham said...

This is really important to me, too. I love seeing blogging as a two way conversation...inspiring and encouraging one another. I try to respond to each and every person who comments on my blog. I'm always so grateful for the support and let them know!

XSZdefineMe said...

Like this post a lot. I am one of your stalkers I mean followers. I just feel like we have so much in common when it comes to our kids. (could be completely wrong, but that's how ya make me feel :-) ) anyway keep doing what you're doing lady because it's working and you're great!

kate schwartz said...

i love learning from you! also doesn't hurt that your family is adorable! ;) ive struggled with consistency in writing/posting. i seem to compare to myself to all the successful bloggers and hesistate posting. as well as i suffer from "i should have it all together and nice and neat, planned out for the next 3 months before i post" syndrome which then means... i never post. enough!! i needed this kick to remind me WHY i started blogging... to journal, to document, to encourage, to build relationships :) thank you!!!

Amanda said...

Good post. Right now I think I blog for me & to connect with people. My blog is not made as a job. I never really want that. I find it better to write because you want to & not have to for viewers. I want a friend and I like making new ones! I think more people should be honest on their blog and you do a great job!