Yesterday on the Codswallop blog I wrote about the Google Reader RSS Revolt. In the article I mention that with RSS feed counts, bigger is not always better.
Crazy talk! We all want more RSS subscribers, right?
Actually, no. There is a good reason why you might not want a bigger RSS subscriber count …
Why do you want people to subscribe to your blog?
That is the number one reason you need to ask yourself right now. If you can not answer this question right away then you need to think hard and long about why you are blogging.
My blog is there to build a loyal audience, to generate an industry profile. I am a blogging and new media consultant. That’s what I do. The more credibility and respect I have, the more blog consulting work I get and the bigger and better business opportunities come my way. I know from my analytics and questioning customers that I rarely get a blog writing or consultancy lead from a first visit. My number one mission for the blog is to get people to subscribe so over time they can see what a nice and brilliant person I am :)
When you focus on who your most wanted readers are you are less upset when people leave. Like when I lost a bunch of readers through Blog Action Day. I have to think those people were the least likely to pass on great word of mouth about my blog if one post was enough to drive them away!
Having Google Reader stuff and inflate my RSS subscriber count would not help me one bit.
I once had a client who worked in an industry where he had met in person every single one of his potential prospects and knew them all by name. There were so few companies that needed his type of product that he could fly or drive to meet each and try to make a sale. Would a subscriber count of 10k help this guy? Probably not! An extreme example admittedly but you understand my point.
You will have your own reasons but it always comes down to getting more of the right people to subscribe.
Have you ever considered why you need RSS subscribers? Are you happy with your current readership? Share your thoughts in the comments …