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Hi, I'm Torstein, and if you have a blog you can help me validate my idea


#1

I’m from Bergen, Norway, where I work as a software developer for a smallish company that does both consulting and its own projects.

Even though I’ve had an interest in startups and entrepreneurship for several years, I’m only now finally getting around to starting a “serious” side-project which I hope to make money off.

The idea is to let bloggers add a poll widget to their blog where readers can vote on what the author should write about next. If readers vote, they are asked to leave their email address so that they can be notified when the blog post they voted on is published.

The prototype got done today, so you can see it in action on my blog: http://saltvedt.net/2013/08/20/check-syntax-ansible-playbooks/

Beside the ‘obvious’ usefulness of reader engagement and getting to know what content your readers want, I hope that this will increase reader retention when blog posts receive massive attention from site like Hacker News, reddit or any other social media site. (The typical thing that happens when you get on the front page of one of these sites is that you receive a huge spike traffic of people who never return to your site again.)

My problem is that I have no idea if people will vote or not (and even less of an idea if people will subscribe). The plan right now is to get on the front page of Hacker News or one of the more popular subreddits on reddit to validate the concept. (Easier said than done…)

I’d love to hear from anybody who has a blog with actual readers (as opposed to mine, but I hope to change that); is this something you could imagine putting up on your own blog?


#2

I once asked http://www.successfulsoftware.net readers what they wanted me to write about. I got very little response. So I probably wouldn’t bother to do it again.

Also wordpress.com has built-in survey widgets. So I would just use those.


#3

Ah, it just occured to me that it would be easier to just wufoo (or something) to check what percentage of people will vote. I know I’m asking for a lot here, but do you have a link and/or hard numbers?


#4

It would be cool to have a service that tracked a list of bloggers in my field and used some math to figure out which topics were trending, etc.

…which is way out of scope for your product. But it’d be cool. :slight_smile:

I’m not sure people actually know what they’d like to read until they see it. That’s why writing can be so difficult.