Maybe you have noticed, too. There tends to be two kinds of people on this planet — those who divide the world into two kinds of people, and those who don’t. This is valid of course also for all sorts of opinions and things beyond people. Let’s stick with the people for a moment, as this will help us understand how people interact with you and your blog.
They can be one and the same and two different paths. Since the blog is an expression of who you are and what you do and think about, let’s start with you. Whether you consider yourself creative and right-brained, or you stand more firmly on analytical and left-brain ground, your world is filled with stories. Some you tell, some you hear. All of them can help you connect with people.
It’s a matter of understanding how to welcome all people so they relate to you and your work — no matter how they see the world and how they came to you and your site. All those relationships have the potential to convert into loyal readers, business partners, work associates, and friends.
The People Who Are Just Checking
People mostly come to your site on purpose. They might have followed a link from another blog. Maybe the link was through a comment you made on a person’s post. In some cases, someone they trust linked to something you have written because they found it interesting. Or maybe one of your loyal readers was talking with a friend and suggested they check out your site.
These visitors are already interested in browsing at least one of your posts and taking a look at your site. There is always the rare occasion in which people find you by chance. What they see depends more on who they are than in what you (and your site) look like than you suspect.
A person may come in, jump on the specific link from the referral site, zoom onto the first post that catches their focus and attention, and take a look at your inventory of links and comments on their way out. Another may come in and take a little bit more time to dig into things. They will follow many links, look at your selection of ‘best posts’ (so make sure you have one) and test the waters by making at least one comment.
The People Who May be Buying
They checked you out, but will they be buying? Before you object by telling me that you are not really selling through your site, consider this. You are selling with your site –- what you’re selling may be ultimately a product (the final site you design/program is a product, for example) or a service. It may be an online or offline offering. Right at first blush and visit, what you’re really selling is a story.
How do you do that? A well crafted about page helps. It doesn’t need to be a long description to be an effective story. Take the author profile I just uploaded at The Blog Herald as an example:
With New World attitude and Italian style, Fast Company expert publisher and Conversation Agent Valeria Maltoni demonstrates her unique talent for synthesizing marketing, public relations, and communications. See how customer relationships are always conversations, and why this knowledge is essential to doing business in the Information Age.
Everything else on the site helps you convey your story, too. And remember that people will judge what they see depending on what they like and how they think. The decisions you make on the look and feel, the content, and the style, will all determine the type of story you’ll be telling about yourself and your work. This is how you start the conversation.
They way you continue it depends on how well you’re listening. That is the piece you can tailor to the two different kinds of visitors: those who seek more proof and information and data, and those who are more comfortable with finding inspirational and quotable thoughts.
The point is that referrals can come via online and offline conversations. People can be of two kinds and minds. In both cases the beginning of a relationship with them depends on the story you craft –- yours alone and yours together.