I Lost One Follower — Here Is What I Learnt
Learn from your negative interactions as well as your positives.
One of the challenges I set myself last year was to increase my followers by 1000. Due to this, I became obsessed with checking my stats. At the height of my obsession, I was checking stats once an hour. All that wasted writing time checking stats.
During one of my hourly checks, I noticed that in two hours I had lost one follower. Just one follower, but to me this one follower became the most important person to my blog.
Before you all worry about the level of my sanity I went from 941 to 940 it was very noticeable.
If only I could ask that 1 follower why they had unfollowed? What post made them unfollow?
This obsession with a lost follower is limited to my writing. On social media, my stats go up and down.
I have noticed on Instagram people following me and then unfollowing straight away. I wrote a rant about it and gained 50 followers, oh the irony.
With my writing losing a follow meant something to me.
I hadn’t published any posts that day, so the reason wasn’t obvious. If I had published a post on the skills of President Trump in women’s rights, I would have known why. However, there was nothing obvious to point to why someone had been put off by my writing.
I could have learnt so much from a conversation with this one follower.
I should say now that my followers will always be more important to me. I could not thank those that follow and comment on my posts enough. I value every one of you.
Although as writers we all shy away from negative feedback, should we change our mindset? Negative criticism is valuable to our development and will help us grow as writers.
I am, of course, speaking about constructive criticism. Those individuals who are kind enough to give thoughtful comments on our work. Not those that choose to comment, as trolls. My advice on trolls is easy, hit the block button.
You don't have to like everyone's work.
It is also important to appreciate that not everyone will like your writing. Think of the best selling authors at the moment. James Patterson is extremely popular. I don’t like his writing.
When you find your writers voice, not everyone will like it. That’s fine as long as more people like you, than don’t.
I will never find that one lost follower, it remains a mystery.
It is possible, that the reasons they unfollowed me, is something I couldn’t change.
Examine your statistic
As well as interacting and listening to our followers. We can listen to the hidden voice of our followers, through statistics.
Which posts performed well and received a lot of feedback. Which posts disappeared into the internet, never to be looked at again. Can you write more posts like your successful ones and less like your less popular ones?
No post is wasted, all have a valuable place in your heart and will help you grow and develop as a person and writer.
It is essential, that we make all our interactions with followers meaningful. You could get drawn into a war of words with negative criticism, but why bother. It expends energy you could be using for writing.
Consider negative criticism as beneficial as positive. Look at the comments they have made and use this to develop your writing further. Grow and change as a writer, but ensure you stay true to yourself.
Thank you to everyone who follows me and comments. The obsession with one lost follower has taught me one thing. How much I value the people that do follow me, every single one of you.