Social-Pragmatic Skills for Bloggers and Blog Readers


Something pretty amazing has happened in the last year or two.

Speech Pathologists have started blogging!

They have brought a huge wealth of knowledge, advice, and (my favorite) creative treatment ideas to the entire world via the blogging platforms.

And with these awesome new blogs have come thousands of new readers.

I’m feeling like a bit of an old lady here saying “back in the old days people showed more respect!”.  Even though Speech Pathologists teach Social-Pragmatic skills to others, I feel like they don’t have these same skills when it comes to the blogging mode of communication.

I’ve been on blogger since 2006, have spent thousands upon thousands of hours on blogs, and have made many friends from blogs, so I feel like I can speak with a little bit of authority here.

Social-Pragmatic Skills for those Reading Blogs:

1. Bloggers like to hear themselves talk. They like to show off their ideas, their kids, their artwork, etc. But bloggers use the blogging platform because they want to be social. They want feedback. They want to spark discussion. They want to know who has been reading their blog. Back when I posted a lot of pictures (and not many Speech Pathology items), my readers were excellent about letting me know they had visited. Take this post for example. I posted a picture of 4 snowmen. And received 44 comments from people basically just saying, “Hi, I came to visit!” It’s like acknowledging a teacher when you walk into their room to look around, rather than completely ignoring them.

2. Bloggers often put something about themselves in their profile or on their “about” page. This is good personal information to have about the writer and to get to know them better, but it is also a way to connect with readers. If you favorite blogger writes that they adore water skiing and you do as well, tell them! Make a connection, maybe even a friend!

3. Some bloggers are selling their awesome materials (and rightfully so since there is some incredible stuff out there!) and others handing out materials for free. THANK the folks who have done all this hard work! Don’t you hate it when you hold the door open for someone and they walk right through without even acknowledging you? That’s a little bit what it feels like when someone downloads my free materials but doesn’t say anything to me. Why thank someone if you’ve paid for the product? Well, I hope you thank your servers at a restaurant. This is a similar concept. It’s just good etiquette.

4. If you like a blog in general, “follow them” or become a “member” (on the right hand side of my blog). I just about peed my pants when I reached my first 100 followers. “They like me!” Now it’s a matter of pride, and I watch that number every day to see if it has increased.

Social-Pragmatic Skills for Bloggers:

1. We do not blog in isolation. We want people to read our blogs (otherwise, we’d make them private or just keep a journal). So acknowledge your reader’s comments by commenting back and/or visiting their own blogs. Katie at Playingwithwords365 is great at this skill! I do not always comment back since people don’t often go to check the comments a second time, but I make it a point to ALWAYS visit blogs of those who have commented on my blog. And I (gasp) try to always write a comment on their blog letting them know that I’ve been there!

2. Link to others. The BEST way to drive up traffic to to have others link to you. And you, in turn should link to others (it’s called “Linky Love”). Love someone’s creative idea? Link to it. Think someone’s advice on helping children with Autism rocks? Link to it. (Did you notice I did this in the previous paragraph?) Hopefully, one day bloggers will do the same back to you.

I hope that this is useful information and that we can treat blogging as the incredible social platform that it was designed to be.

Did I miss anything? Other blogger social skills that I should have included? Let me know!

 

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34 Comments

  1. I would comment more often if it was easier to do on my iPad! So many SLP bloggers use Blogspot, which seems to be finicky with sign in on my iPad. WordPress is easier.

    Hi! I read your blog! I have subscribed for quite awhile on google reader.

  2. Thank you for this blog subject! I am never sure what correct protocol is with electronic media!

  3. @Heather, good point! There are some blogs that I just can’t comment on no matter how hard I try! I don’t read blogs via my ipad (which I’ve only had for about 2 weeks) so I haven’t had that issue yet, but since I have 3 different google accounts I know I’d have a hard time leaving a comment with the correct google account if I tried!

  4. I subscribe through Google Reader as well, and enjoy your blog! Found you around the time you posted your Lorax lesson in February – excellent. Your post today was a needed reminder to take a moment to let you know that what you do is very much appreciated!

  5. Great reminders! I’m applying what I learned from you by posting a comment here! I’ll try to do that more often!

  6. Anonymous says:

    Thanks so much for all you do and posting it for all to see! I enjoy reading your blog-

  7. I enjoy reading your blog. I’m glad I found it. 🙂 I have a personal blog which has nothing to do with speech, but then I have a website dedicated to speech. I know how crazy it has driven me when no one comments on or likes my blog. With my website, well, there isn’t currently a place to comment, except sending me a personal email, so it doesn’t bother me (yet).

    I don’t know if I say it enough, but thank you for all the freebies and good ideas you come up with and post for all of us!

    Rebecca
    Talking With Rebecca

  8. Thanks for the great post! I think I’ve left a comment once or twice, but sadly not regularly! I comment on facebook regularly so blogging shouldn’t be any different, keep writing! Your blog was one of the first I started reading and is now a regular on my Google Reader. Inspiring blogs like your have given me the courage to start my own. I have greater appreciation for a good post after seeing how much time and energy goes into writing a post!

    Check me out…appalong.blogspot.com

    I’ve been looking for some good reads and will have to check out the other blogs on the comments section!!

  9. Love these gentle reminders that we all forget. I find the reason I might not be as good at linking to others is that, now with Pinterest, blogs, facebook, twitter, etc, I honestly forget where I’ve seen all that I’m talking about. I try to whenever I can though!

    ~Denise
    speechlanguagepirates.blogspot.com

  10. Thanks for the reminders! I love to read other blogs but often forget to comment. This is a great reminder. 🙂

    Miss Thrifty SLP

  11. As a fellow SLP blogger, I absolutely love this post. It’s easy to forget the social niceties of reading/writing blogs. Thanks for reminding all of us.

    mtmarySLP

  12. Very well said! I know that people can’t comment without some sort of account…I actually started up a Google account just so I could comment on blogs, then started writing my own a few months later.

    Carrie
    Carrie’s Speech Corner

  13. So true! I always appreciate comments on my blog but need to be better about leaving one on other blogs. On Facebook it is easy to click “like” on postings but takes more to comment. Love your points!
    Cindy
    http://www.meesterc.wordpress.com

  14. Great Post! Comments make me so happy!

    I always try to ‘PIN” good blog posts, as that seems to generate SO much activity for others!

    On that same note! If you’re pinning or sharing on Facebook, it’s great to link to that single post and not just the picture or the blog in general!

    Have a great week!

    Jenna
    SpeechRoomNews.blogspot.com

  15. I’m not a blogger, just a reader, but I definitely think post offers some great advice and reminders. As a reader, I sometimes feel silly or redundant commenting on every post saying “Thanks” or “I love this idea,” or what have you. But put in this perspective, I now know to err on the side of feeling silly or redundant.

  16. I love these great reminders!! They are so appreciated. I too blog as a creative outlet, and offer only freebies. It’s nice to feel appreciated when someone gives you feedback and “gets” you. Especially when you have a unique and different perspective (such as my blog offers.) Not sure how you do it, but I find you to be an inspiration! It’s not easy to blog, work f/t and care for a family (I know first hand), however you do it with many challenges and do it well. Thanks for all you share! Rose http://www.speechsnacks.com

  17. I just recently read about how people are making some money selling their curriculum and teaching aides. You should! It’s such brilliant and clever stuff on this blog–you are too generous, CC!

  18. Thank you so much for this! I am a relatively new SLP blogger (April 2012) and as far as I know the only one in South Africa. I am trying very hard to get the SA SLPs blogging and am giving a “techno” talk next week to try and get them going. I hope I can use your Blogging Protocol ideas?

  19. WOW, I love your writing! I’m not a blogger so I had no idea how beneficial comments could be to a blogger. I just started following your site this school year. I’ve enjoyed every post. It seems that you do have super powers to be able to put this site together so well and keep all of your professional obligations on track. Thank you for sharing. I will be better about letting you know how much you are apreciated!

  20. Great thoughts on blogging! Your blog was one of the first speech related blogs I read and it inspired my mom and I to start our own!
    And we love hearing from our readers!

  21. This is indeed a good find. I love blogging and this could exactly help me. Thanks for sharing the tips! You’re such an angel.

  22. Great post! I couldn’t agree more and love it when people leave me feedback on my blog posts. I love to share my ideas, but love it even more when I know they are helpful to someone! Thanks for sharing your thoughts. I’d be honored to have you visit my site, too.

    Pam

    chitchatandsmalltalk.blogspot.com

  23. Oh CC I love you 😀 I am. admittedly, not always great about commenting on other’s blogs. I DO (as you so kindly pointed out!) try VERY hard to comment back to nearly EVERYONE who comments on my blog. I miss a couple here and there but I try!

    Thanks for the reminder though. And like Jenna, I try to PIN also to help others out.

    As always, you ROCK!

    (And holy comments batman)

    Off to prove I am not a robot (have you thought about turning this feature off? I can’t remember how blogger works but I think you can?)

  24. I love this blog! I you have great ideas! I have pinned your blog so I don’t miss anything! (I try not to)

  25. Thanks so much for the reminders! Your blog is awesome and I’ve gleaned so many ideas off of it! Keep it up!
    Nicole
    Allisonspeechpeeps.blogspot.com

  26. Thank you for the post – I really never thought about some of the suggestions. I will be more cognizant of proper pragmatic skills for here forward. 🙂

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