Amanda Luedeke

January 16, 2014

Thursdays with Amanda: 5 Reasons Readers Stop Reading Blogs



Amanda Luedeke is a literary agent with MacGregor Literary. Every Thursday, she posts about growing your author platform. You can follow her on Twitter @amandaluedeke or join her Facebook group to stay current with her wheelings and dealings as an agent. Her author marketing book, The Extroverted Writer, is available from Amazon and Barnes & Noble. Today, it is on sale for $2.99…check it out!

When I worked in marketing, part of my job was to stay on top of mommy blogs. Every day, I’d catch up on my favorites and try and discover a few new ones (not hard to do, of course).

It’s been at least three years since I had to do this, and I still find myself checking in on my favorite mommy bloggers…even though I don’t have kids and even though I rarely read blogs in general. This got me thinking about my time as a blog reader and how some blogs would be high on my list only to drop down and eventually fall off the list altogether soon after, while other blogs stood the test of time.

So, I figured I’d share the TOP 5 REASONS I WOULD STOP READING A BLOG:

1. The blogger changed their approach. This happened all the time…a blogger would be in their groove, churning out great content that hits their reader and then WHAM. Things change. With, I was an avid reader until she started doing a bunch of endorsements for products and brands. Suddenly, most of her posts were sponsored by Pampers or Verizon or Whatchamacallit. Though she tried to keep the posts Dooce-like, it just wasn’t the same. I soon stopped reading. Another example is when the blogger suddenly brings in a bunch of guest posts. We’ve done this on our blog, in fact, and we’ve noticed numbers go down. So yeah…while it may help pay the bills and give you some breathing room, changing your approach is not always going to keep your readers happy.

2. The blogger disappeared. My most favorite mommy blogger was Alice Bradley at She is funny and smart and clever. But back when I was reading her, she’d only post once every month (if that). Sure, I’d check back in with her (I loved her THAT much), but I always had this inner anger toward her. Why couldn’t she meet my needs?! Why did she always have to FAIL me?! And I found myself constantly on the lookout for a replacement.

3. The blogger let the haters get to them. There was a blogger I followed who was into right-wing politics. Needless to say, she had a lot–and I mean A LOT–of haters. At least that’s how it seemed. Her blog went from being this funny, clever look at parenting to a place for her to defend herself and expose the trolls (though posts from her came very infrequently at this point). This got old…fast. Eventually, she closed the blog to protect her family, but well before then, I had moved on. I felt bad that she was being targeted, but as a reader, I wanted her to be able to handle it. That may make me sound like a selfish person, but READERS ARE SELFISH. They aren’t there for you, they’re there for them. As soon as they feel you’re too cocky or too whiny or too sensitive, they’ll bail.

4. The blogger never ever ever followed through. During my mommy blog era, I also followed a few weight loss blogs. There was one in particular that I really liked, but after a few months of reading her, I just couldn’t take it anymore. The reason? She never actually lost weight. Heck, she never even stuck to her goals for longer than a week. She’d create plan after plan and start diet after diet. She’d then toss out the diet and focus on lifestyle. And exercise. But that wouldn’t last either and week after week after week of this, I realized how uninspirational she was. And I was done. I was off to find a blogger who would follow through. Even if it just meant following through on their promise to blog every other day. This is because blogs are like friends. And you don’t want a flaky friend or a friend who is always letting you down. You want a friend you can rely on. You want a friend who will inspire you to live, be, work better.

5. The blogger was too transparent. One blogger that I followed was in the midst of a divorce and then soon after, a new relationship. And let me tell you, she held nothing back. She’d actually detail out the things that her ex did wrong that caused the relationship to end. And then detailed out the things her new man was doing right. And her kids were stuck in the middle. THREE of them. While this was going on, she also complained nonstop about needing better health insurance and not having money for her bills. She was treating her blog like a diary, and NO ONE WANTS TO READ YOUR DIARY. It’s great to be real with your readers. But you don’t want to burden them with your struggles, and you don’t want to try and get them to choose sides, either. They aren’t your real-life friends. They’re your Internet friends. And it’s a whole lot easier for them to walk away.


What makes YOU stop reading a blog? And what changes do you need to make to prevent reader loss?

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  • Gary Neal Hansen says:

    Thanks for this list! Great cautionary tales. Here are my top three:
    1. I find myself leaving behind blogs that sound like they are recycling content from other, more prominent blogs.
    2. Or because the content is advice that sounds more made up than rooted in experience.

    3. Or because the person sounds mercenary, critical, or cranky instead of generous, encouraging, and happy.

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