How to Immediately Increase Your Blog Subscribers

By: | November 15, 2015 | Tags: , , , |

Follow to Follow Directories help #bloggers get subscribers You look off to your right sidebar where your follower count is.

Witnessing a fall in subscribers is always accompanied by a sinking feeling in your stomach.

You start to experience the 7 Stages of Grief.

You are shocked, then in denial. It must be a computer glitch.

You get angry and then start bargaining (with whom? yourself? a greater power?).

You feel guilty that you didn’t do enough to stop the loss before it occurred.

Then, finally, you experience hope.

This post will give you reason to hope because you absolutely can get the subscriber count back to where you want it.

Then, there are others who shrug off the loss.

“What’s one less person,” they ask?

They turn to a loved one for solace only to be told, “You didn’t want them anyway if they are not genuinely interested in your writing. You are better off without them.

Consider this quote from the BlogTyrant:

Don’t be afraid to lose lots of subscribers

…don’t worry about losing lots of subscribers… That’s good. It means you’re getting rid of people who aren’t interested/aligned to your content. 

I have the utmost of respect for the BlogTyrant. Its reputation is far-reaching. However, I must say in the strongest of words that I vehemently disagree.

Blogging takes perseverance. Effort would not touch on it. You are time-challenged and sleep starved. The joy of blogging makes it all worthwhile.

However, that small little number off to the right that shouts how many people have put their faith in you to inform or entertain them is motivating. To see it drop is demoralizing.

Demoralizing I wrote and demoralizing I mean. Even the loss of one follower as indicated by the number of subscribers falling by one digit kills morale. It murders morale.

I have seen people threatening to abandon their blogs, to stop writing all together.

I know of people who couldn’t handle the stress of not being able to get their subscriber count to grow, take a break, just to return to the same “growing pains,” to quote a blogger whose blog was not growing at the rate she desired. She taught me the phrase.

Even a one digit drop is a rejection. The reason (too much Email perhaps, no longer interested in the topic possibly) does not matter. It is taken as a rejection.

I know of people who blocked MailChimp notifications, and taught others experiencing the same sadness to do the same just so they wouldn’t know someone had unfollowed their blog. One blogger reported that it ruined her whole day to wake up to that Email.

Bloggers may acclimate to living without free time and sleep, but they shouldn’t have to live with a loss of morale as well.

Even though you know losing subscribers is part of blogging, it is still a loss. Seb Dani, in his post How to Deal with Rejection, explains that rejections can even cause physical manifestations. Whether or not they do, they still hurt.

What You Can Do if Someone Unfollows Your Blog

Is there anything you can do if someone unfollows your blog? You can’t seek them out and get them back. Even if you knew who they are, and the odds are you don’t, you certainly can’t argue with them.

I am not advising you get the lost subscribers back. I am advising you get the subscriber count back up or even higher.

How to Get Blog Subscribers

Is there anything you can do other than throw a pity party for yourself? Yes! Absolutely. Before you follow these tips, figure out how many subscribers you want to replace.

Go to a Follow to Follow Directory to get new subscribers to replace the ones that left your list. The people on the directory are there for one reason, to give a Follow Back. They are on the list for the sole purpose of following anyone at all who subscribes to their blog.

  1. Look over the blog list. Try to determine which blogs have content that would be interesting for you to read. The articles will end up in your Email, after all. If you have a choice, pick the ones you would enjoy reading.
  2. Follow their blog.
  3. Introduce yourself. I would use a template. The following works well.


I am __________.  I found you on the Follow to Follow Directory. I followed your blog. I would appreciate a Follow Back. Thanks! Nice to meet you.

(Sign your first name.)

  • Repeat the process each time you lose a follower.

Locations of Follow to Follow Directories

I started my directory last year. It is still thriving, actively collecting names.

Hundreds of blogs for you to choose from must be on it by now.  I have them all listed by date, so you know the recency, and you can stay organized as far as who you’ve already asked to follow you. I use my directory as a way of saying thank you to my blog subscribers. I give them this perk.


When I first started my Follow to Follow Directory last year, it was such a success that it came to the attention of a famous blogger who goes by the moniker Weird Wally. He is a  regular blog columnist. He publicized my directory in his column with these words:

Is it worth the Trouble to Get an Email Following on My Blog?

A little over a month ago, a friend started her blog and immediately figured a way to get a huge following. She set up a page on her blog where other blogs enter their blog’s URL so others can subscribe to your blog. Meanwhile you promise to subscribe to other bloggers who have listed their blogs’ URL. It’s an honor system…

What You Should Not Do If Someone Unfollows Your Blog

  • Stay calm. Don’t be complacent. Go into panic mode. It could be the start of a downward trend. Panic creates adrenaline which fuels us. It will give you drive to network with people on the Follow to Follow Directory, and get the number back up.
  • Throw yourself a pity party by abandoning your blog. There is no need to stop writing. Get the number back up.
  • Make excuses like “the weather is warm, so people aren’t home reading blogs.” Just get the number back up.
  • Make excuses like you don’t have time to network on the Follow to Follow Directories. Change your priorities, and get the number back up.


This post has contained an action plan for getting an increase in new followers and getting rid of a drop in morale.

I acknowledge that a downward spiral could indicate something is seriously wrong with the blog; for example, maybe the blogger stopped caring about mechanics or something. However, if the quality of your blog is the same, just get the number back up.

Readers, do you have other ways bloggers can get increase their subscriber counts? I would love to hear them. I look forward to your views.

Related Posts:

How to Have a Popular Blog [and Should You?]

How to Quickly Get 3,000 New Blog Followers

How to Quickly Find 3,000 New Blog Followers

Tick Tock: Stop Watching the Clock and Find Time to Blog





    • Janice Wald

      Hi C,
      We have made an amazing team the last few months.
      You have been instrumental to the success of the International Weekly Roundup. Famous bloggers like Neil Patel, Eugene Mota, and Matt Banner are asking if they can contribute.

  1. Keith Lunt

    Hi Janice,

    An interesting idea! Just wondering though, what’s the involvement of these people like once they follow you? Is it mainly a system for gaining new followers, or do they also become readers?

    I might give it a go this week and dig into the analytics in a week or two!

    • Janice Wald

      Hi Keith,
      I have met some of my most engaged readers/commenters this way. It may start out as a morale boost, but it ends in a connection, a relationship.
      We are talking bloggers so driven to succeed that they put their blogs on a Follow to Follow Directory.
      1. These people know networking is instrumental to being a successful blogger, so networking on the list and then continuing to network on the blog goes together.
      2. Because they are so invested in blogging that they put their name on the directory in the first place, they are invested enough to like/comment/ and share.
      3. I am thrilled, flattered, honored that you want to study us. Study away! Thank you for the interest, and should you publish a post about it, the exposure.

    • Janice Wald

      Hi Jacqueline,
      What kind words! Thank for for writing me today to tell me. It’s been a pleasure connecting with you.

  2. John Doe

    Very honest. A lot of people think these thoughts but could never actually admit that this is how they feel. You are a problem solver not just a person who complains about things they actually have control over. It is really refreshing to read such honesty.

    • Janice Wald

      Thank you so very much. Those comments mean a lot to me. That’s me– keeping it real!
      Thanks for writing.

  3. Richard Schulte

    Okay, I might get in trouble here. One should desire followers who love and actually read and anticipate one’s content. To get these followers, simply create great, original, appealing, deep content. Easy, slender or reblogged content, tweets every five minutes, and self-promoting schemes where people follow each other produce lots of easy, cheap followers, and if its all about your ego, that’s probably great. Numbers are inflated, but those followers in the final analysis don’t count for much. I’d rather have ten super enthusiastic followers than 100 self-promoters or disinterested people who don’t really engage or care.

    • Janice Wald

      Hi Richard,
      You say you would rather “have ten super enthusiastic followers than 100 self-promoters or disinterested people who don’t really engage or care”.
      1. For fun, let’s do the math. Let’s say you have 10 followers, and 10% of them reblog your post or promote your link.
      Let’s say I have 100 followers that I found on a Follow to Follow Directory. They will not all be disinterested because on the Directory I will only follow like-minded bloggers or as close to like-minded as I can find. Let’s say 10% of my 100 followers promote my link. I have 10 people promoting my writing to everyone they know. You have only 1. In order to grow your subscribers, you need to get your writing in front of new readers.
      2. I did not say go “eenie-meenie miney mo”. I recommended picking people whose articles might interest you
      3. 100 followers from the directory? People can do whatever they want, but I suggested going to the directory only to replace the lost subscriber count. You call it an ego boost. I call it a morale boost.
      Bloggers are tired. They are tired from lack of sleep, they are tired from a lack of free time, and they are tired of seeing disappointing blog stats.
      4. You started by saying you might get yourself in trouble with these comments. I love them! I love our connection! How cool to be able to find a controversial post on a blogging tips site. Please keep your comments coming.
      As always, I really do appreciate your writing. I have enjoyed our exchange of perspectives. Since you commented, others are writing in with their opinions on what you wrote. That is the beauty of blogs–they allow for that.

      • Richard Schulte

        The big difference is that you blog about blogging, so self-promotion appeals to bloggers generally. Most bloggers don’t blog about blogging. Many have niches. I blog mostly about San Diego places and events. People who are interested in San Diego specifically are much more apt to share, tell others and develop a love for the blog. Followers without a personal interest in my material are the ones who seldom engage and might drop away. That’s another reason why content is king. Of course, the biggest reason why good, original, appealing, deep content trumps everything else is…Google. Google searches bring in the most enthusiasts. Google brings in people who want what you’ve got. And all of my biggest backlinks have come from people Googling.

        • Janice Wald

          I never know what my search engine traffic is supposed to look like. That was why I was so grateful to you with your help with the Moz site. Are you still planning on guest posting about it? Someone wrote me and accurately observed there’s not a lot of SEO on my site, so I am looking forward to your article.
          Yesterday, my StumbleUpon traffic was way up. I had heard that when SU traffic rises, search engine traffic rises. My search engine traffic was double what it normally is on a good day.
          In your knowledge about SEO, do you have any idea why there might be the connection, or do you disagree with the blogger and write it off as coincidence? I am just curious. Thanks,

          • Richard Schulte

            I’ve got something half written. I’ll work some more on it! You’re going up against lots of other powerful websites and pages with similar content, which adds an impediment to gaining search engine traffic. Few people proceed beyond page one of Google results, so the “big boys” get by far the most hits. To rise in Google results, the principal thing is to get backlinks from as many different established, reputable domains as possible. This tends to happen organically over time as people discover and appreciate your material. It also helps to produce content which is genuinely unique–but that’s hard to do when there are gazillions of other sites and competitors out there! A niche site like my own has an advantage here, as fewer folks produce content about San Diego. Of course, fewer folks perform searches about such specific subject matter. Lots and lots of folks search about blogging, so if you eventually develop a super high “Google rank” you’ll get thousands upon thousands of Google visits per day!

          • Janice Wald

            I will look forward to that day, LOL.

          • Richard Schulte

            Oops! I didn’t answer your question! I suspect the Stumbleupon and Google spikes happening at one time is a coincidence, but I don’t know all that much about Stumbleupon. Perhaps other factors are involved? The number of people at any given time looking for or interested in certain material might change due to day of the week, weather conditions, news, who knows what…

          • Janice Wald

            Hi Richard,
            I will be writing a post about the effectiveness of my StumbleUpon group the Sunday after Thanksgiving. I have observed what you have noted, and I will report that–the day of the week matters.

        • Richard Schulte

          Perhaps I should rephrase something. It’s better in my niche to be followed by 100 non-bloggers than 100 bloggers. The non-bloggers are ALL interested deeply, and will share and produce links without having secret ambitions of being followed back. And the people they share with are generally also non-bloggers. I aim to touch ordinary people. Silly me.

          • Janice Wald

            Not silly at all. Fantastic to want to help people. Please don’t take this wrong: I am not being judgemental. I so respect you. But, in contrast to you who wants to help “ordinary people”, is it wrong for me to want to help everybody? I don’t even know if “ordinary people” will read my blog. I have a few friends who don’t blog who find my time-saving tips or writing tips interesting and comment.
            I think you are right. The bottom line is it is not apples to apples.

          • Richard Schulte

            The problem with blogging is a blogger blogging about blogging in a blog is blogging about blogs by blogging in their blog-filled blog whilst another blogging blogger blogging will blog about the blogger blogging blogs about blogging until their head explodes!

  4. Melinda

    Janice, this is one I just have to let go. Too often I let anxiety rule me anyway.
    I appreciate your action steps, I know they will work, if I would work them.
    Your BBFF, Melinda

    • Janice Wald

      HI Melinda,
      I think that’s great that you don’t let anxiety over this affect you.
      I think people are driven by stats. Runners always want to beat their own time on the clock, for example. If you are not one of them, more power to you, but I think people are driven to success by healthy competition, even if it’s healthy competition with themselves. In the case of blogging, trying to beat their own stats. Our ability to see monthly stats allows for that.
      Your BBFF J

  5. DGKaye

    Great info here as always. Although I don’t believe I have a ‘follow’ counter on my page, I wouldn’t even know where to find one. I suppose It’s not so important to me to count followers. I have bigger things to stress me out. But one thing I do agree with, if we lose a subscriber because our blog may not be their cup of tea, obviously they aren’t interested in our blog and that’s fine. People will gravitate to what they like. 🙂

    • Janice Wald

      Hi Debby,
      Thanks for writing.
      1. If you wanted a “Followers” counter, you would go to settings, widgets.
      As an author, do you feel you fit into the mold of bloggers depressed over falling subscribers? I heard in order to have the support of a publisher, as an author, you are expected to have a blog to generate interest in the bigger picture–selling books. I hosted a guest author who wrote how he had 3,000 followers but hadn’t written anything in months. He only had a blog to appease his publisher.
      2. You wrote me this week and said an article you wrote might be to my liking. I may sign up again under a second Email I have. I am still concerned I am not seeing your posts. Your comment came in with a headline. Is it the Dropbox article? I would love to see it since I wrote on this topic myself. I saw your Email while I was cleaning out my inbox on my lunch break at work.
      Thanks for writing. I hope I didn’t say anything wrong. I don’t know about authors. This is only what one author told me. You might even remember him. He guest posted in August.

      • DGKaye

        Hi Janice. Thanks for telling me about the counter. I wonder if I added it now would it count those who are already following me? If not I won’t bother. As for publishers, yes, I hear the first thing they look at is your social media followings and your blog. I have a nice following in all my places, maybe not what might constitute large enough for a publisher’s likings, but I’m not concerned as I’m an Indie writer who self publishes. I write and promote my own work and don’t have to dance to anyone’s whims, plus I keep my royalties so no worries.
        I don’t know if you’re getting my posts, they only are sent out every Tuesday by email to subscribers and found on the WordPress reader still, so it seems. If you aren’t getting an email every Tuesday from me then something is wrong. And here’s the link to my dropbox post.

        • Janice Wald

          Hi Debby,
          I am sure it would note your current subscriber count, but if you are not happy, you can always remove the widget.
          I might actually write the book I keep talking about next month. If I have questions about self-publication, I hope I can pick your brain. On my way to read your Dropbox article.

  6. Tessa

    It was empty this time, now let me save this and come back to see if it saved it or not.

  7. Patty

    You’ve done it again. Wrote a post that really helps me. THANK YOU! I have people coming to my site and spending time there but do not want to sign up. I understand that the amount of email is definitely a consideration. I promise once a month and that still isn’t working. I will try your suggestions, so far joining your pinterest board and link parties have helped. I can count on this one helping too on the basis of everything else you reccomended working.

    • Janice Wald

      Hi Patty,
      This will definitely help. A guarantee, a lock, just start bottom up in the directory to ensure recency.
      I will send you a link to an article I’ve written about turning visitors into permanent subscribers when I get home from work.

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  9. Cavelle

    Great ideas! 🙂 Personally, I keep tabs on my follower numbers but what I really pay attention to is views and unique visitors. I love holding “meet and greets” when I need to catch up and reconnect with regular readers and new ones alike. It’s also been my experience that the more you go out there and read and comment….the more views and comments you will get in return….you really do need to put the work in…it’s not enough to just post and sit back and wait….I did that in the beginning and I can tell you all you’re going to get back in return is the sound of crickets lol Thanks for sharing this great info with us! 🙂

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  11. Kathleen

    Another interesting post, I will check this out. I love reading all the interesting conversations too.
    I am stumbling these posts.
    Fridays Blog Booster Party #33

  12. Jennifer

    Trying to get subscribers has been one of the hardest tasks so far in blogging. I am definitely taking some of your suggestions. ~Jennifer

    • Janice Wald

      Hi Shellie,
      Thanks for your interest in my article about Follow to Follow Directories.

  13. Mithra Ballesteros

    Very interesting discussion with Richard. (You should extract it for its own post.) I find that the whole question of subscribers needs to be more thoroughly explored. I have email subscribers, people who follow my blog via bloglovin’ or feedly, and people who routinely find me via social media follows. Is one category more valuable than others? Not sure. I try to give me email subscribers a little something extra but I don’t know that they are necessarily more evangelical about my work. There’s also the question of emailing a link to a post vs. an rss feed delivered via email. Which way generates better analytics on your actual site? I’d sit through a class that went deep into this topic!! (Hint! Are you going to the BAM Conference?)

    • Janice Wald

      Hi Mithra,
      Great to hear from you! I never did get mass traffic from Reddit, but at least I understand it now. I feel like it may be better for certain topics rather than others.
      As far as my Follow to Follow Directory, I’d like to respond to your comments. They showed a lot of thought which I appreciate. I think I needed a couple of days to think about your comments and how I wanted to respond.
      1. I loved your word “evangelical”. In contrast to what you wrote, I do feel my Email subscribers are more …evangelical, consistent commenters and thoughtful commenters.
      2. I also try to do something “extra” for my subscribers. I offer three perks for subscribing.
      3. If I am in someone’s feed, of course, I am grateful for the page views, but if the person subscribes, a relationship forms, a connection that lasts.
      4. Regarding the analytics, I don’t know either.
      5. Regarding the BAM Confernce, I work during the school year. Isn’t that usually when it is? It would be great to meet you and others though.
      6. Regarding my interaction with Richard: Sometimes the comments are as interesting as the actual post. He felt bad that our discussion became controversial, but I was thrilled. That’s what interesting blogs are made of!
      Thanks again for your visit this week and your thoughtful comments.

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  15. Smart Blogger

    I am definitely going to try these tips.

    Thank you for sharing!

    -Best Regards-

    • Janice Wald

      Hi Suhudi,
      My pleasure. Thanks for clicking my backlink at the Linky Party.

    • Janice Wald

      Hi Marilyn! Thank you so much for the compliment and for the comment!

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