I've spent quite a bit of time wandering around in Blogland lately. Not only do I maintain this site, but I write media and movie reviews on Families.com. I've observed several things that I'd like to mention to you here.
1. If you're trying to promote anything, having a blog is a great way to go, but particularly if you are an author. On a blog, people have the chance to become familiar with your writing style and to get to know you a little bit, and this will make them curious about your books. The same works for if you're promoting, say, bowling shoes. By reading your blog, your customers see that you know a lot about bowling shoes and they feel like they're making an informed decision.
2. Once your blog is up, start visiting other blogs and leaving comments. When you do that, your information is encoded into that site, and that blogger can click on your name and learn more about you. Not only is this great for promotion, but I've made some pretty good friends with other bloggers in this way. It's a win-win.
3. As you visit other blog sites, check out the links they have down the sides. They have linked to sites they enjoy or blogs that are similiar to theirs, and you can find wealths of blogs to visit by clicking on those links.
On the side of my blog, you'll see the list of all the sites I visit. I spend about fifteen minutes a day flipping to my favorite blogs.
4. One thing that I'd really like to emphasize here is that you should be adding a new post regularly. Each reader has their favorite blogs. If they like your content, they will check back frequently. Even if you just share whatever thoughts you've been having that day, it counts. The more fresh you keep your content, the more your readers will return, and they'll recommend your site to other people.
On the flip side, if you only post, say, once a month, your readers will soon forget about you. After trying the site for a few days in a row, they'll lose interest. One of the most important things I have learned as a blogger is the importance of fresh, current content.
I know that for myself, if I don't see new content regularly, I tend not to waste my time checking. I like to go to sites where I know I'll see something new.
The Internet is going to become the way we do almost everything in the future. Establish your name as a presence on the Internet. Leave comments on Amazon. Join Yahoo groups. Start a blog and leave comments on other blogs. Whatever your reason is for being on the Internet, make your name easy to find. Do a Google search for your own name and see where it turns up, and then keep it up. Name recognition is very important, and it's in your own control.