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Blogging Is Like The Wild West: Here Are Some Rules To Live By

wild-west.jpgToday Mara Rogers the Founder of http://www.SecretsForMoney.info takes you to the Wild West. Subscribe for the free Secrets for Money blog at http://www.SecretsForMoney.info where you get inspirational tips for more money, more time, and more fun!

“A man’s got to have a code, a creed to live by, no matter his job.” — John Wayne

Picture your favorite western and you have the idea—blogging is like the adventurous times of the Wild West.

If you are a seasoned blogger then you probably already know some of these rules and face them on a daily basis.

If you are a beginning blogger, here are some rules to live by in this era of transformation as we cowboys and cowgirls step out onto the range.

(1) Are you feeling like the Lone Ranger?

Often blogging creates a solitary work environment which can luckily be combated with Social media and networking with other bloggers as you sit at your computer desk.

The pioneers knew that to survive they would have to be kind, honest, accept responsibility, and lend a helping hand.

I would add that not just to survive, but actually thrive as bloggers, we must all do the same.

This is proven time and time again, as we read the track records of some of the most financially successful bloggers, even if they are running a one-man or one-woman blog, they certainly help others and get support from fellow bloggers.

(2) What Do You Need In Your Saddlebags?

There are many great articles at Problogger.net to give you the resources you need to start and maintain a blog.

Some of the tools that I found to be essential to carry in your ‘saddlebags’ are certain features like a “site map.”

After all you don’t want your blog to be a ghost town! So you need to work the Search Engine Optimization.

One way early on is to help your blog/site to get indexed by the major Search Engines is by building a site map. At http://www.SecretsForMoney.info I used a plugin called “Google XML Sitemap“.

I also used the plugin called “SEO Title Tag” at Secrets for Money to search engine optimize my blog’s title tags by creating a customized title tag for any post, static page or category page.

(3) Know Your Brand Or The Cattle Rustlers May Use Theirs

It is important that you have a written business plan for your blog if you want your blog to be monetized. And create a blueprint of strategies for developing your blog “brand” so you have clarity at all times and a forward-looking vision.

Just like the ranchers had to have a brand for their cattle and had to always have someone on watch so the cattle rustlers didn’t put their mark on the rancher’s cattle overnight while they slept.

How does this Old West wisdom apply to your blog?

Know your plan and brand for your blog, and stick to it. This position will help you make confident decisions when you are faced with all the temptations of the “latest this or that” promising to make your blog better.

Be discerning; there are a lot of great gadgets, but you will be overwhelmed very quickly and you will get off track in the technological world of blogging if you lift your head up from your work at hand every time a new item pops on to your computer screen or into your email inbox.

If it is applicable to your business plan and blog brand then research it, otherwise just make note of it if you have to, but mosey on along and get back to your blogging.

And above all, as all cowboys and cowgirls know “Never ask a Barber if he thinks you need a haircut.”

(4) Stake Your Claim And Avoid Outlaws

It was essential in the vast frontier that you stake your claim for a plot of land quickly. As depicted often in television westerns, pioneers had to hold to their belief in the land they chose, because if they doubted it for one moment then they were susceptible to hustlers who talked them out of their acreage by saying there was something wrong with the land.

The same is true for your Blog, you will run into “croakers’ as they used to call them back then (pessimists or doomsayers). These croakers turn up a lot as your blog becomes more popular.

(5) The Gold Rush: “There’s Gold In Them Thar Hills!”

Just as with a Gold Rush, there has been a flurry of fortune-seekers in the world of blogging too. And also similar to a gold rush, there is the feverish implication of bloggers striking it rich instantly.

Sure some strike it rich, some don’t. But remember, it is a process, a process that requires commitment.

Your chances to make an income are directly proportional to how you work smarter—more strategic, just like some gold prospectors—they worked hard, but some knew to not just use pans to find gold, in time, they developed other tools and methods to mine gold.

And let’s not forget the Old West saying “Timing has a lot to do with the outcome of a rain dance.”

(6) Keep the Code

Much like the Old West, we bloggers are modern-day cowboys and cowgirls bound by these unwritten rules—a code of behavior—that centers on hospitality, fair play, loyalty, and respect for the land.

The Code of the West didn’t need to be written down because the best of the west lived by it through their integrity, self-reliance, and accountability.

And in conclusion fellow bloggers, never pass anyone on the trail without saying “Howdy.”

Copyright © 2008 by Mara Rogers of Secrets for Money.info

Mara Rogers is the Founder of http://www.SecretsForMoney.info where she and her team work to empower you to freedom by helping you increase your capacity for all the wealth currencies: money, time, health, and love. Subscribe to the free Secrets For Money blog  And if you want to give her a “Howdy” email her through the Contact Page.

About Darren Rowse

Darren Rowse is the founder and editor of ProBlogger Blog Tips and Digital Photography School. Learn more about him here and connect with him on Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and LinkedIn.

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Comments

  1. العاب says:

    This is an excellent post, thanks a lot , I’m grateful to you.

  2. David says:

    In my saddle bags I wish I’d had backups. I’ve just lost 1100 comments with no prospect of retrieving them.

    Dagnabit (is that the right expression?)

  3. Josten says:

    interesting i never thought of blogging that way

  4. Helmi Asyraf says:

    hahhaha……This artivcle is creative!

    The point that I really agree with is the point 5.

    Although there are a lot of goal seeker out there that comes from different paths and roads

    Although the target is the same, the roads that are being taken probably absolutely different.

    There are long winded-mazed type road and there are straight cut road. Although the some of the roads are hard for us to reach, we will at last reach our destination.

    It is only matters of timing when we reached our pot of gold – not the matters of will reach it or not.

    If you choose the second one + sop trying, we will not only lost our sure-get golds but we have also lost the time we spent before.

    p/s : I have posted in the previous article. Although one of the blogger in my country has to cycle 12miles to the city for him to go to the internet cafe, he has never given up. He do knows that there are still huge pot of golds are waiting for him (n_n)

  5. One of the most creative posts I’ve seen in awhile:) Very informative as well!

  6. Zsolt Balla says:

    Very creative, and also very helpful & true.

    To stick to the style, I’d add: choose your weapon wisely! I think it’s fair to say that Google AdSense is the colt of our era, but maybe you only need a pocket-knife

    thanks, and howdy, Mara

  7. Blog Expert says:

    Nice article. One of the more creative articles I have read on the Internet about blogging lately.

  8. PlasticPilot says:

    Hi Darren,

    the first link in the last paragraph is broken (ttp instead of http…). Apart that, great post.

  9. A Maui Blog says:

    Very creative and helpful post indeed! hiiiiyaaaa!

    I feel like finding my cowboy boots and hats and wear them when I create my post today :)

  10. A Maui Blog says:

    Zsolt Balla, that’s a great addition!

  11. Interesting blog and creative writing. One of the first things I did was reach out to some of my extended friends to see what they would be interested in reading. Sometimes they gave me ideas I never would have considered before.

  12. Tumblemoose says:

    Tumblemoose has made great pains to steer clear of them thar tumbleweeds in the wild, wild west blogosphere.

    A tip o’ the hat to the ladies, nod of the head to the gentlemen and running rustlers out of town are the strategies employed at Tumblemoose.

    Since these strategies are part of my honor code, I am bound by them and my little ol’ homestead on the outskirts will keep me safe and warm.

    Y’all come back now, ya hear?

    Tumblemoose

  13. Rahul says:

    I too feel that being a blogger was like being a solo most of the time. But yes, thanks to social networking sites like facebook, hi5 and others too, we blogger also do get some time to socialize as well.

    Note: Mara Rogers’ site link does not work in the last para first url.

  14. Art Predator says:

    Howdy, Mara!

    Just passin by on the trail. Bit a dust kickin up round here but thanks for the cool drink a water; much appreciated.

    BTW, there’s a bunch of poets out there haven’t figured out they gotta brand…

  15. I’ve always wanted to be a cowgirl! Now I feel like I’m really a part of the next frontier. Thanks!

  16. A. Dawn says:

    Great article. I have seen Google not picking up many sites; however, once a Google XML Sitemap was created for one of my sites, Google picked it up in two days – even the site did not have any content.
    Cheers,
    A Dawn Journal
    http://www.adawnjournal.com

  17. …and of course you have to have a fast gun if you are promoting your blog via comments. Getting the first comment is like shooting first. Getting the 115th comment is like shooting last.

    Of course even if you shoot first you still need to hit. In regards to comments, you need to say something informative. In the case of the Cowboy post a blogger named:, العاب

    shot first but missed with his comment:”This is an excellent post, thanks a lot , I’m grateful to you.”

    I think that Helmi Asyraf was the first to hit after shooting

  18. Georjina says:

    Great post and some food for thought. For me #1 is the problem because there are so many blogs out there in my niche that seem half there and then not relevant as time goes along.

    Guess it’s jump in and say ‘Howdy’.

  19. Why do I suddenly have an insatiable urge to play Oregon Trail?

  20. Interesting.

    The next post, you might want to use a great legend from the wild west and compare it to successful bloggers. Maybe, you could use Billy The Kid as one.

    Write about how you can become really successful, even a legend, by doing the opposite of whatever people are doing. And sometimes, you (your blog) will get killed when you are too much of an “outlaw” :-)

  21. Howdy Mara,

    We sure got our penney’s worth on this thoughtful advice, straight from the pony express. Fortunately my ‘saddlebags’ are full of practical and useful supplies, though I would like a few less cattle rustlers sniffing around my domain.

    I am happy to oblige when it comes to ethics and a sound code of honor, as well. Integrity is a vital key to any successful venture, especially if one wishes to enjoy longevity.

    Much obliged,

    Teri
    ~

  22. Clarke says:

    I like your point about having a business plan for your blog. It’s something I hadn’t exactly thought of, but it makes a lot of sense. It’s always helpful to make your ideas into something concrete.

  23. Calvin says:

    Problogger recent run of guest postings have been great. Some of the articles really inspiring. Another thing though – I see less and less post by Darren himself these days?

    I guess that the kind of luxury that popular blog has those not crave!

  24. Jim Gaudet says:

    Very nice spin on this post. Was that a picture of the Marlboro Man?

  25. I can’t still get over the blog plan. It would be much better if you can go into detail into creating a blog plan in order to monetize it. What is a blog plan and how are you going to create it?

  26. Mike says:

    I said Howdy he said Hi. (Beastie Boys – Paul Revere)

  27. Robby G says:

    Howdy. What I got is just keep blogging and try not to stray off topic. That’s the way to be.

  28. Great post and full of great informative tips some we already knew but may have forgotten about, and some new ones that we need to know about. I also like the creative writing of the publisher it certainly kept the audience eyes on the prize. Thanks for that!!

  29. ashok says:

    Points 2 & 3 need a little bit of background.

    Before you do anything with post title tags or even, to some degree, your brand, you need to do some keyword research and figure out what phrases and keywords you want to be known for. This means, when crafting a brand, you must know ahead of time what people are searching for and what you can do to be found a reasonable amount of the time.

    It is possible to dive in and start making friends and increase popularity by working for each other, and just hope the search engines pick up on some of your tags and popular posts. That’s my approach – there’s no search engine that can really do justice to my posts, I know that. But that latter route is insanely difficult nowadays: we’re all here because we’re struggling to get the attention we need to make us relevant.

  30. Aaron Lee says:

    Good post to remind us with some of the great tips that we’ve forgotten about.

  31. Peter says:

    What a great article! As a new blogger, it’s some very good encouragement, about keeping the faith & blogging for the love, not the money!

    Cheers!

  32. Nice comparison. :-)

    Your last point was great. All bloggers are bound by an unwritten rule of showing hospitality, fair play, respect and loyalty.

  33. çiçekçi says:

    For sharing thank you very much good very beautiful work

  34. Madhu says:

    Good information for new bloggers as well as for bloggers who have to make their blogs popular.

  35. PierreSmack says:

    Remember that in the Gold Rush, the most money wasn’t made by the prospectors, it was made by the people selling shovels.

  36. Harish says:

    Great post. I guess the google xml sitemaps are SEO friendly and every blog should have it

  37. michaelkpoh says:

    Fnatastic post: you hit the nail on the head when Ýou emphasize the importance of being in for the long haul.

    I also like the following statement: “if you lift up your head from your work at any time.” This is particularly important and timely due to the incessant, continuous information from the blogs we subscribe to. I subscribe to ProBlogger’s daily blog tips and Twitip; between those two blogs is enough info to fill the Grand Canyon!

    I also subscribe to Feedblitz and Daniel Scocco’s Daily Blog Tips.

    So at any point in time I am almost always “lifting up my head from my work.”

    What I have had to do is to skim & delete what I think to be unneccessary or save for future reference.

    This is a timely email which reinforces my decision & practice.

    Unfortunately, it will not stop the incessant flow of ‘incoming blog-information-bombardment!

  38. Rudi Lehnert says:

    I don’t agree at all that “Blogging Is Like The Wild West”. Good blogging has to do a lot with exact strategical planning:

    http://blogorama.eisbrecher.net/2008/10/29/besser-bloggen-teil-1/

    Good blogging is not an unpredictable adventure in the Outbacks, it is precise architecture inmidst our biggest cities.

  39. Hey Mara! (That’s my middle name!)

    Great post–thanks so much.

    In #3, you mention writing a business plan for your blog. I’m getting started on my business plan and wondered if you had any favorite business plan formats/templates that you could recommend.

    I think I’m going to use One Page Business Plan by Jim Horan–it’s supposed to be easy & targeted. Ever heard of it?

    Thanks again!
    Heather

    Heather Allard
    The Mogul Mom

  40. Like in a gold rush, the rihest find of gold happen long after the majority had quit looking for gold. They way to find that gold is hard work!

  41. Fotografi says:

    Useful as usually.
    i like your post man.
    You pack easy rules to do my job better. Thanks

  42. Interesting and very different way of looking at things.

    An analogy I probably would have never thought of using. You did very well with it.

    Great work!

  43. Shaun says:

    Some very creative metaphorical writing Darren! thanks for the tip on submitting a site-map.