Tuesday, October 2, 2012
Once upon a time, facebook and Google were these amazing online services that helped people to find and share my content. This week, they're just causing me a lot of grief and making it more difficult for my readers to get to my content. If you like the posts here and want to stay up to date on the things I'm writing and sharing, please pay close attention to this post.
RSS and E-mail subscription: Goodbye Feedburner, Hello Feedblitz
Years ago Google bought Feedburner, the industry standard in providing RSS feeds. My blog has used feedburner for years to let RSS subscribers know when I have new posts. However, Google hasn't been properly supporting feedburner for a long time and this year it has been quickly phasing out the services that it offers relating to feedburner. To be safe and ensure that my subscribers don't get left hanging, I have signed up with a new service for RSS feeds.
What does this mean for you?
First, if you currently subscribe to my blog in an RSS reader, you'll need to update your feed. For a short period, I'll keep the feedburner account open, but after a few weeks, I'll be shutting it down. If you currently subscribe to http://feeds.feedburner.com/phdinparenting, you'll need to delete that account and instead follow http://phdinparenting.com/feed.
For example, if you use Google Reader to follow my blog, go into your reader and navigate to my blog. If the URL in your browser window looks like this, that's bad:
You'll want to delete that feed and instead subscribe to http://phdinparenting.com/feed. If you've done that (and possibly if you signed up for my feed many years ago before I even implemented feedburner), the URL in your browser window should look like this:
Second, if you would love to get all of my new blog posts sent to you via e-mail, you're in luck! You can now subscribe via e-mail by going to http://www.feedblitz.com/f?sub=858666.
I've always loved my facebook page. It has been a great place to share my new blog posts, re-share some old blog posts, share other interesting content, and engage in discussions with my readers. Unfortunately, it seems like facebook is making it more difficult for brands (yes, it considers my blog a "brand") to reach their communities without paying for that exposure. Even when people do pay, the results are incredibly inconsistent.
In the past, if I shared something on my facebook page, usually around 3,000 to 4,000 of my 9,500 subscribers would see the update. Now, if I don't pay to promote a post, facebook only shows it to around 500 to 2,000 people (the numbers are a bit higher if a lot of people immediately comment and like the post and lower if people do not immediately engage with it). As a result, some people who follow my facebook page have said that they aren't getting any updates from my page in their newsfeed anymore.
What does this mean for you?
If you want to be sure that you never miss a post, subscribe via RSS feed or e-mail.
I'll continue updating on facebook and it seems like the more frequently you interact with my content, the more likely it is to show in your newsfeed. However, there really are no guarantees of that other than going directly to the facebook page to see what has been posted recently.
What does this mean for the blog?
Over the past few years, I have primarily used this blog to share my own thoughts and ideas, and have used twitter and facebook to share other content that I find interesting. However, since it isn't getting to all of my readers, I may start doing weekly link posts on the blog, letting you know about things I've read over the course of the week that you might find interesting. This way, even if facebook is being flaky and twitter is moving too fast, if you've subscribed via RSS feed or e-mail, you won't miss out on my most interesting finds.
Thank You For Your Patience
My readers are the life of this blog. I love seeing that people are reading and discussing the things that I write and share, so I really appreciate you taking a moment to update your subscriptions so that you can continue reading along. In addition to subscribing via RSS feed or e-mail (yes, I'm repetitive!), you may want to go to my homepage and scroll back and see what you may have missed, including recent posts on my trip to Bangladesh (more to come), on a sleep training study, on the mommy wars and more.
Will you be updating your subscription?