What Is #MondayBlogs and Does It Work?

By Rachel Thompson | Blog

May 02

What Is #MondayBlogs and Does It Work? MB-FINAL-LOGO-KLM

 ‘Looking at millions of retweets and millions of non-retweeted ‘normal’ tweets, I found that non-retweets tended to contain more self-referential language than retweets. Not only does self-reference not lead to more followers, it also doesn’t lead to more retweets.’ 

~Dan Zarrella, The Science of Marketing: When to Tweet, What To Post, How To Blog, and Other Proven Strategies

 

I started the #MondayBlogs meme late last year for one simple reason: to give bloggers and writers a dedicated meme on a dedicated day. I chose that name since it seemed obvious: share blogs on Mondays. It’s one day to share our blogs and retweet others as a kind of informal community. There’s no sign-up sheet, no dues, and also no ‘rules’ other than the guideline to use the hashtag to share and RT on Mondays.

Why did I start it at all? Well, I had participated in #MentionMonday for a few years but found people were using it like #FollowFriday, kind of a ‘hey, follow this person,’ kind of thing — which made NO sense to me: isn’t that what #FollowFriday is for?

I wanted something dedicated solely to BLOGS. Something that was obvious based on just the hashtag. So, #MondayBlogs was born.

 

Since then, thousands have participated and I couldn’t be happier. I’ve received wonderful feedback from all kinds of folks and most people are pretty cognizant of the fact that it’s a two-part meme: sharing their own posts AND retweeting others. And yet, some don’t get it. They don’t RT others. Ever.

 

That’s part of the risk/reward system of Twitter. Nobody can make anyone do anything.

 

Let’s deconstruct.

 

1)   Blogging. There are millions of blogs out there. It can be so hard to get people to just make one small click and read our stuff. Frustrating, even.

 

For those new to blogging, I suggest purchasing Molly Greene’s fabulous new book (Blog It!) about blogging. It’s a wonderful primer. Remember this: the onus is on US to get people to our blogs. Memes like #MondayBlogs can only do so much.

 

If someone is disappointed that nobody is clicking or sharing, I suggest they review what they’re doing and how they’re doing it (taking into account Dan’s statement above), and learning how to do things like: optimizing their site, writing catchy headlines, and managing expectations. I’ve found, in my five years of blogging and social media, that there are numerous contributing factors to creating success.

 

2)   Expectations. Let’s break this down a bit more. There’s no guarantee of anything in this life, particularly on social media. But there are a few things we do know: those who are generous and positive generally get more RTs and have more followers (via Dan Zarrella, Social Media Scientist for Hubspot). That’s a fairly profound discovery.

 

I love Dan’s books because his information is fact-based, sensible, practical. Being positive doesn’t mean the ‘unicorns and rainbows’ version of the world. It’s just a realistic, study-based fact: in breaking down millions of tweets, he has demonstrated that not always talking about ourselves, how horrible our life is, or how nobody treats us fairly nets more RTs and follows. It’s so simple, really.

 

So we need to manage our expectations about Twitter. People who come on expecting to go viral are sure to be disappointed. It happens only rarely, usually to someone famous, and let’s be honest, it’s not always a positive thing. Even expecting retweets can create disappointment.

 

3)   Karma. Memes are just that: themes. #MondayBlogs, for example, is a weekly theme. We’re not a ‘group’ (in fact, it’s just ME who monitors the @MondayBlogs stream), and I simply cannot make people RT others. I RT as many posts as I can without ending up in Twitter jail, so of course this means I can’t RT everyone. This is why I count on others to share AND retweet. Some don’t get that they should, others may not like what others write and don’t want to endorse them with a RT, and let’s face it — we’re all busy. Sometimes we RT a few and dash out the door.

 

My experience on Twitter, participating in all manner of chats and memes, is this: give and ye shall receive…eventually. Focus on others. It takes a long time, regular growth, interesting content, and some relationship building to get people to RT us regularly.

 

And let’s be honest about the ugly side of it: there are people who won’t follow or RT people if they have a low follower count. It’s silly, but that’s part of the culture of Twitter. From a practical standpoint, the more followers someone has, the more RTs they’ll get (again, depending on what they share). So, if someone RTs us, we benefit from all of their followers seeing it and vice versa. So, someone with several thousand followers may be hesitant to RT someone with much less.

 

I’m not saying it’s right, I’m just saying that type of thinking exists.

 

I’ve worked hard curating followers on my streams. I target between 250-500 tweeps daily to follow  (I like ManageFlitter. Easy and free). Many people don’t have the time or desire to work hard to build their following for whatever reason, yet still expect people to share their stuff. For the record, I share and RT many people each day. I don’t look at follower count. If you’re funny or interesting, I’ll RT you.

 

4)   Culture. I’ve found that with Twitter, there’s a culture about it that people need to learn and understand. It’s almost like we have to earn our stripes – RTing others with an expectation they will always return the favor will only result in disappointment.

 

I recently got some negative feedback from a #MondayBlogs participant and I understand her frustration. She participated for two weeks, RTing others, and got barely any RTs in return. It doesn’t seem fair.

 

I apologized and asked her to give it some time. I understand the frustration, believe me! I hope she’ll give it another chance, as there are hundreds of happy folks who have told me how thrilled they are with the meme resulting in more followers, more blog comments, and more blog views.

 

My goal is simple: give back to others the same way others have given back to me over the last four years. It doesn’t always work and I apologize to anyone who feels slighted. Meanwhile, I’ll continue to promote #MondayBlogs and ask those who are involved do the same. Memes work best when people actively participate.

 

So, to answer the original question, yes, it does work. For most. As I said, hundreds participate each week and thousands of blog posts are shared. If tweeps are not getting RTs, perhaps they should examine what they’re doing, or what they could be doing differently, to make it work. And I welcome your feedback to make it better as well.

 

Bottom line: not all memes fit all people. If it’s not a good fit, there are thousands of other memes and chats.

 

And that’s what I love about Twitter: we curate our own streams…we make it what we want it to be!

 

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About the Author

Rachel Thompson is the author of newly released BadRedhead Media 30-Day Book Marketing Challenge: How to energize your book sales in a month – created to help authors market their book. She is also the author of Broken Places (one of IndieReader’s “Best of 2015” top books and 2015 Honorable Mention Winner in the San Francisco Book Festival), and the multi award-winning Broken Pieces, as well as two additional humor books, A Walk In The Snark and Mancode: Exposed.

She owns BadRedhead Media, creating effective social media and book marketing campaigns for authors. Her articles appear regularly in The Huffington Post IndieReader.com, The San Francisco Book Review (BadRedhead Says…), 12Most.com, BookPromotion.com, and Self-Publishers Monthly.

Not just an advocate for sexual abuse survivors, Rachel is the creator and founder of the hashtag phenomenon #MondayBlogs,  #BookMarketingChat (co-hosted with Melissa Flickinger) and #SexAbuseChat, co-hosted with certified therapist/survivor, Bobbi Parish all live Twitter chats.

She hates walks in the rain, running out of coffee, and coconut. She lives in California with her family.

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(43) comments

@terrylancaster May 2, 2013

What Is #MondayBlogs and Does It Work? http://t.co/D3FeuOq87W via @BadRedheadMedia

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What Is #MondayBlogs and Does It Work? http://t.co/9fVLPypD6a via @BadRedheadMedia

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Karla Darcy May 2, 2013

What a thoughtful post. I was not aware of #MondayBlogs but really love the concept. I’ve been so impressed at how willing most people are to retweet. The writers I’ve run into on twitter and facebook have been incredibly generous in passing on information and how-to-tips. I hope to return the favor by doing the same for them and for others just learning the craft. Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

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    Rachel Thompson May 3, 2013

    Thanks, Karla! My goal is truly to give people more exposure. I’m glad you know about it now and hope you can participate at some point.

    hugs!

    Reply

What Is #MondayBlogs and Does It Work? http://t.co/91ROhV5t7B via @BadRedheadMedia

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What Is #MondayBlogs and Does It Work? http://t.co/kUlnEKzsna via @BadRedheadMedia

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What Is #MondayBlogs and Does It Work? http://t.co/HWKJ5ccHLR via @BadRedheadMedia

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What Is #MondayBlogs and Does It Work? http://t.co/GJqx4hu6DT via @BadRedheadMedia

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What Is #MondayBlogs and Does It Work? http://t.co/OELbwfidVz via @BadRedheadMedia

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What Is #MondayBlogs and Does It Work? http://t.co/SuhuxTgSad via @BadRedheadMedia

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Patricia Sands May 3, 2013

#MondayBlogs works for me! Thanks for all of the time, effort, and thought you put into this networking opportunity for anyone wanting to get involved. You rock, Rachel!

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    Rachel Thompson May 3, 2013

    Thanks so much, Patricia. Networking is a wonderful term for it. I do love connect people and giving their work as much as exposure as possible.

    Thanks for your kind comment. xo

    Reply

What Is #MondayBlogs and Does It Work? http://t.co/tRJC3IqTYy via @BadRedheadMedia

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@ALifeSanctified May 3, 2013

What Is #MondayBlogs and Does It Work? http://t.co/jWkxlGd4yu via @badredheadmedia // Read it and Tweep!

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@steenaholmes May 3, 2013

What Is #MondayBlogs and Does It Work? http://t.co/DIX5y6lek6 What it is and what it’s not. Tell me your thoughts!

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What Is #MondayBlogs and Does It Work? http://t.co/inGkF7pj7d

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What Is #MondayBlogs and Does It Work? http://t.co/ho90XGMIU2 via @BadRedheadMedia

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What Is #MondayBlogs and Does It Work? http://t.co/pC8w8E3HDw What it is and what it’s not. Tell me your thoughts!

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What Is #MondayBlogs and Does It Work? http://t.co/akSxKcpUUx via @BadRedheadMedia

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@MerlinUWard May 3, 2013

Shouldnt the KPI of #MondayBlogs be pageviews or readers gained, not RT’s? #puddingplz @beckygaylord @BadRedheadMedia http://t.co/vfMpppTaWW

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What Is #MondayBlogs and Does It Work? http://t.co/CtU5tvGCNs What it is and what it’s not. Tell me your thoughts!

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Bette Lee Crosby May 3, 2013

Great Post. #MondayBlogs is an awesome way of sharing and you are right it doesn’t always come out even, and if you go into it expecting tit for tat, you will be disappointed. But that’s true of anything. My theory is relax, enjoy the ride, and appreciate the friends you make along the way.

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    Rachel Thompson May 3, 2013

    Thanks, Bette Lee. It is hard for many people to participate and get nothing back in return. But I do feel as you do: just keep giving back and it will happen.

    I remember my first #FFs — it was so exciting when someone mentioned me in a #FF! I think I fav’d each one those first few months on Twitter. It’s still gratifying that people are interested at all, so that’s a good thing. thx for the comments, honey.

    Reply
Rhonda Kronyk May 3, 2013

This is why I read as much of my Twitter feed as I can – I constantly learn new stuff! Thanks for looking after this. I hadn’t heard of #MondayBlogs before today, but will participate Monday morning after I get next week’s post up!!

You are so right about learning Twitter ‘culture.’ I am new to it, and constantly find things to work on. I do believe in sharing as much as I can and like to see others do the same. It is just more fun that way!

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What Is #MondayBlogs and Does It Work? http://t.co/t4jkHK9bLT What it is and what it’s not. Tell me your thoughts!

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What Is #MondayBlogs and Does It Work? http://t.co/fkoVYql6BU via @BadRedheadMedia

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What Is #MondayBlogs and Does It Work? http://t.co/9E5dltw2aT via @BadRedheadMedia

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@ldbahnan May 4, 2013

What Is #MondayBlogs and Does It Work? http://t.co/OMv6hObscN #indiepub #writing

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What Is #MondayBlogs and Does It Work? http://t.co/L2Zzu3CKLy See tomorrow! Join us, RT others, play nice.

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What Is #MondayBlogs and Does It Work? http://t.co/FyW49QP25W See tomorrow! Join us, RT others, play nice.

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Twitter and memes, broken down by the incomparable Rachelintheoc Thompson. HELPFUL INFO! http://t.co/DdvJKlBjGG

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What Is #MondayBlogs and Does It Work? http://t.co/SEINTgG5AY What it is, what it’s not, what to expect #meme #blog

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What Is #MondayBlogs and Does It Work? http://t.co/sTuTQwuetJ What it is, what it’s not, what to expect #meme #blog

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What Is #MondayBlogs and Does It Work? http://t.co/KYLXPCAdWF What it is and what it’s not. Tell me your thoughts!

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@mparel May 6, 2013

What Is #MondayBlogs and Does It Work? http://t.co/eqNgvrswLe via @badredheadmedia

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What Is #MondayBlogs and Does It Work? http://t.co/JnWycTMkp5 What it is, what it’s not, what to expect #meme #blog

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MT @paulehendricks: RT @RachelintheOC: What Is #MondayBlogs and Does It Work? http://t.co/2nhgbZfBsE What it is and isn’t. Thoughts?

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What Is #MondayBlogs and Does It Work? http://t.co/EXfFAuB4YL via @badredheadmedia We love @RachelintheOC #downunder you will too 😉

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@ElleLothlorien May 7, 2013

Now it’s #TellMeTuesday, but I’m still catching up w/ #Monday!!-What Is #MondayBlogs and Does It Work? http://t.co/xD8EV406DE @RachelintheOC

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[…] What Is #MondayBlogs and Does It Work? […]

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[…] Mondays, there is an enormous amount of tweeting and retweeting (RT) going on for blogs. We have Rachel Thompson to thank for that. She started #MondayBlogs. On Mondays, you tweet a blog post with the link you […]

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[…] Rachel Thompson. (You can read more about how and why #MondayBlogs works on Rachel’s blog here.) I enjoyed reading and commenting on her posts. I have also enjoyed her astute and attentive […]

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[…] What Is #MondayBlogs and Does It Work? […]

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