But Everybody’s Doing It

This happens not to be how I view my blogging but this metaphor is built into every one of our blogs. You’ve all done sales. Every time you’ve recommended a book, movie, or restaurant, you were doing it. And every referral of yours that someone’s followed through on showed either your delivery was good or the product sold itself. Well, here you are self-employed as a blogger, your currency not dollars and cents but time. So why isn’t your blog growing as you’d like?

1. They don’t know you’re there.
I’ve seen you put up 800, 1200 impassioned words and I’d love to see you earn more than four likes. You obviously care about your blog. It looks good. You’re open for business. But it sure is quiet. If your livelihood were at stake, what would you have made sure to do before the Grand Opening and kept up? Right, advertise. I didn’t think this needed to be said again but are you visiting and engaging bloggers? Do better than I did. When I stepped out on WordPress, it was just my nose pressed to my words. I didn’t know to look up. Twenty-one months later, giving to get is how I neither blog nor live but if you’re offering decent material, Natural Cyber Law says you should enjoy some support back.

2. But they’re not buying.
There is a sense in which we’re all peddling our blog and asking passersby for their time. Our FOLLOW ME button betrays us in this hope. If your business plateaus, what do you do? The question really is what should you do differently? You change the marketing, move, rethink your niche or product. The product would be the last thing you touch in blogging because there are so many of us out here that a decent presentation should connect you with like-minded viewers. Through the wide range of topics I have covered, my offering comes down to my writing. My product – though I wrinkle my nose to say it that way – is every word I lay as carefully as a mother does her newborn in his cradle. If the idea of sales is too crass for you as it threatens to be for me, think of sponsorships. Sales is really the business of eliciting support for merchandise, service, or information, and sponsorships seek patronage usually on a larger scale or for artistic enterprises. Whether small or big, quantitative, or qualitative, patronage is payment in various forms for work considered worthy. In blogging, what you’re asking of us is our time. You either convince us you’ll make it worth our while or you don’t.

3. There’s nothing in it for them.
Remember, you’re not filling a private journal but seeking an audience. You scribble away zealously. You really want to write this, share that. But will it grab us? If you were someone else and stumbled on your blog, would you be impressed? Would you follow? I’m not talking about subscribing to your own blog to raise the count. I’m asking if you’d find any amusement, entertainment, beauty, insight, inspiration, intrigue, laughs, provocation, stimulation, information that’ll make you want more on that blog. Leave you actually looking forward to more.

171 thoughts on “But Everybody’s Doing It

  1. there is something to it. if we all just wanted to journal to be able to give expression to our thoughts, impressions, opinions and adventures, we would either do it in longhand in hardcopy form, or else in a private blog, as you have said.
     
    i think it is a fine balance to post something that is meaningful to the author, and at the same time being thrilled when others have said that they find it meaningful, too. i guess both are part of the journey.
     
    but time is a precious commodity as much as it is for the reader as it is for the author. sometimes either being creative at your own site, or else investing that time instead by reading someone’s blog is a very real choice. and that is not even counting the investing of time in the real world.
     
    it amazes me how some people are able to do it all and well. i am not there yet! 🙂

    • Thoughtful feedback. You express well the balancing act that blogging becomes increasingly as we seek to mature our content and readership. One very real practical reminder – to use your words – that I can offer is that we don’t need to be posting as often as many do. We can work on the other aspects of blogging in the time we would put out a post. Not saying we shouldn’t put up what we are excited to. Just that people don’t realize the world isn’t WAITING for it, breath abated. The sky won’t fall if you push it back a few days and pace yourself.

      • exactly. our planet is still spinning….
         
        and yet just that very balance of putting up what we are excited to, scaling it back to once a week or even less frequently… and still the balance between content and readership is begging. anyhow, it obviously is keeping us on our proverbial toes, so on we blog… cheers!

  2. Great advice. I’m going to be abit slack on the computer– ie. less time for a few wks. on computer. I just sustained a head injury after another cyclist crashed into me on New Year’s Day.

    Less stimulation so that my brain can heal. I lost my memory for 6 hrs. after the collision-crash. I do have a blog post…on blogging and life events..in my dazed mind. Might take a few months of reflection.

  3. Diana fantastic advice, I know when I write from my heart that is when I get the most comments. Telling it how it is, people resonate and respond. You have an amazing amount of followers, but as you say, you spend the time shaping your words into a beautiful picture. I see you, when I read your words, you give us a piece of yourself every time you write and that is golden.

    • Gosh, what do I say to this? I am floored every time someone says he, she sees me through the page. Thank you so very much for affirming that I put it all here, myself, every time for you guys. Thank you for bearing witness to my process and striving. I most certainly feel the authenticity at your place, too, K. Keep shining.

      Onward and upward together,
      D.

      • I agree with you! Even I get the most views on articles which come from my heart 🙂 Once, I had written a blog where I had said ” I wish I had more people reading this”. It was just a heart felt wish , nothing else. And some people ended up following me that day! Sometimes, the universe does want to help us, and more , when we ask for it’s help– with all our heart! 🙂
        Cheers
        Amrita

    • I agree with you! Even I get the most views on articles which come from my heart 🙂 Once, I had written a blog where I had said ” I wish I had more people reading this”. It was just a heart felt wish , nothing else. And some people ended up following me that day! Sometimes, the universe does want to help us, and more , when we ask for it’s help– with all our heart! 🙂
      Cheers
      Amrita

  4. I am a beginner! So your article is perfect for me! After reading this, I questioned myself whether I really work as hard as one is required to? Do I give my 100 percent to writing? So you see, not just did your blog inform me but it also made me think.
    I am motivated and not going to give up now 🙂
    Thanks for this writeup 😀

    • I’m so glad for the lovely feedback. Always pleases me to make someone think, esp about his, her writing. Thanks for the follow. =) Welcome to A Holistic Journey, and I look fwd to seeing how yours unfolds.

      Diana

  5. That equilibrium can be hard to manage. Where should the scale bear greater weight: Content or Readership? I believe that is a question of motivation. Just as you mentioned in the final stanza of your previous post, readership is where all the plain and-to some degree-thoughtless words are put together. As both the blogger and the blog grows, and the direction and intent changes, every and now and then-just as my friend recently experienced-more meaningful content begins to emerge, as does the bloggers desire for each post.

    As for audience, I was at first disappointed with who they may be. I struggled for long periods in time pondering that very thought. I thus began exploring the other platforms my blog reached and alas, relief massaged my soul as I beheld the most glorious sight. The Wayfarer’s crowd is here. Mine is entertained by my performance on Twitter.

    Very nice post. Thanks for this.

    • The question you raise is one everyone has to grapple with in his, her own way. But as I wrote, I’ve discovered it’s not necessarily one or the other.

      “As both the blogger and the blog grows, and the direction and intent changes…more meaningful content begins to emerge..” The ironic thing for me is I learned last yr to permit myself to relax and…laugh with you guys. I actually started putting out some more light-hearted fare between the ones you can sink your teeth into (while always trying to offering a nugget to take away in every post). And that laughter certainly helped build community as much as the rest.

      Glad you gained ground on Twitter. =)

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