Ever had a ‘defining moment’ that changed the direction of your blog? A moment of realization that makes you stop in your tracks and reinvent your approach?
Maria Gajewski from Never The Same River Twice emailed me today to tell me about her recent defining moment which she calls her Authentic Blogging Manifesto in which she describes her quest to grow her blog by writing for social media (she describes herself getting to the point of being a “StumbleUpon Slave”) instead of her readers.
The story is honestly written and I’m sure will resonate with many of you (as it’s a tale that I’ve heard many bloggers share their versions of).
Maria also outlines her 4 point plan for moving forward:
- Step 1: Stop Pretending That I Know Everything
- Step 2: Talk to People Who Know More Than Me
- Step 3: Share What I Learn With People Who Know Less Than Me
- Step 4: Put My Energy Into Communication, Not Traffic
Maria’s story and lessons are not new. Many bloggers have come to similar realizations and decisions in their blogging – however I wanted to post it as a reminder of two things that I’ve found to be important in building a successful blog:
1. Balance is Important – Most bloggers go through times when they become obsessed with one aspect of blogging (be it SEO, writing for social media, experimenting with a new tool or medium, getting links from other bloggers, tweaking their design etc) and where their blogging becomes unbalanced. In Maria’s case it seems that she became out of balance with writing for social media. While there’s nothing wrong with list posts or getting traffic from these sources – a blogger needs to keep some perspective and not become side tracked by the lure of big traffic from these kinds of sites. Read more about blogging balance.
2. Write For People – Perhaps the most obvious blogging tip that anyone could give is to keep your reader firmly in mind as you write and to aim to write something meaningful (both to them and you) that really communicates to them and enhances their lives in some way. It’s a pretty simple tip and one that we all know – yet it is amazing how many of us become distracted from this truth and need to be reminded of what it’s all about.
Have you ever had a ‘defining moment’ in your blogging? What did you learn? What decisions did you make? How have you gone since changing your approach?