Don’t Let your Blog Reader Survey Get you Down
A couple weeks ago, I did my first blog reader survey here on LWR. As I’ve worked through my blogging course and experimented with different content posts over the last two months, I wanted to see how I was doing, what I could be doing better and what was working already. I was hopeful and excited when I published my first post of the week asking for everyone to fill it out and was ready to get everyones’ opinions so I could make Life with Rosie even better.
But, as the results started rolling in, I realized that I was not entirely ready for the answers. Although I genuinely wanted to know what everyone thought about my space here, I wasn’t prepared with the knowledge on how to look at the data and wasn’t far enough removed from it to not take it personally. That night, I sat in front of 30 answered survey results trying not to cry because I was feeling so defeated by the answers I got and wondering if I was doing anything right here at all ( I know, I know, I’m totally a drama queen)
After stewing over the results for a couple of weeks, and asking Dustin to make me some charts and help me look at the data, I realized that I was blowing everything out of proportion and needed a fresh perspective on my data.
I learned that I needed to consider ALL of the data, not just one category. At first, I immediately looked at what people didn’t like reading about and I was pretty taken aback to see that Rosie was one of the top selections. I’m not going to lie, that was a shot to the heart. I mean, my blog is named after her. I understand not everyone has a dog or can relate to my posts about her, but she is pretty cute to look at. As the results kept coming in and I kept on seeing people saying they didn’t like to read about Rosie, I got more discouraged and more disheartened and (because I’m dramatic and sometimes a crazy person) was thinking about throwing in the towel all together on blogging.
My husband sat down with me to look at the results as I started getting teary about it and told me not to get too ahead of myself. He made some charts and showed me how to correctly look at my data. Instead of simply looking at what people didn’t like reading about, he had me first look at how often people read Life with Rosie and then what those people didn’t like reading about. Not one person who reads LWR 2-3 times a week or more said they didn’t like reading about my Rosie pup. It was only the people who read LWR once a month or rarely who said that. Well, okay, I can dig that, because it’s the people who visit me often that have the most relevant opinions to me.
I learned that if I use an anonymous survey, people will be blunt and honest and that can be a hard pill to swallow. Now, like I said before, I know I was asking for honest opinions and for everyones feedback, so I should have been more prepared for constructive criticism. But, I still wasn’t prepared for how some of those opinions were going to come across. I had some very pointed comments about how some of my posts seemed like they were just for affiliate links, some comments about how I don’t write enough about Rosie and some comments about how I write about her too much (talk about confusing). It was a lot to sift through and to take in and I was so focused on the comments that gave me things to work on that I totally ignored the plethora of positive comments from many who said they appreciated my blog, my words and my honesty. I’m such a ninny, guys. I let solid, constructive comments that gave me exactly what I wanted totally ruin my day instead of taking them in stride and letting all the positive comments lift me up.
I learned that there is a lot of stuff I am doing right and got some great ideas on how I can make this space even better! A lot of people are looking for more affordable style and beauty posts and I’m really excited to work on more content in that area. A lot of people really enjoy my blog tips/tricks and want more insight into my life as a full time blogger and how I’m making that happen. Someone even gave me an awesome insight to my pinable images and what I can do in the future to make them stand out even better. I realized that there was so much good that came from my survey and it gave me a HUGE list of future post ideas, so, no blogger’s block for me!
At the end of the day, I can’t make everyone happy. Not everything I write is going to resonate with every single person who takes the time to stop by LWR…and that’s okay. And as I continue to evolve this space, find my voice, discover topics that I enjoy writing about and bring new content and ideas here, I need to be accepting and understanding that I can’t be perfect. But, I can continue to work hard to create posts, to try to bring my very best effort to this space for those who read, wether it be occasionally or daily. I can embrace everything good that blogging has done for me and my soul. I started blogging as a creative outlet and a place to write about my second chance at living and all of the things I’m learning to embrace at this point in my life. This place is a labor of love, and above all else, writing here makes me happy, content and alive.
So, even though it took me a while to process all of the information, thank you to all who took my survey and gave me your honest opinions. I’m definitely learning to grow a thicker skin and to take feedback with a grain of salt, but also as something that can only make me a better blogger and writer in the future. And now I know how to prepare for my next survey down the road…I won’t let the results (or the muggles) get me down!
Have you done a reader survey on your blog? How did you react to your results? If you didn’t get a chance to take my survey, what’s one thing on LWR that you enjoy? What’s one thing I could do better? I promise I won’t let your answers get me down!