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Instant Blogging Karma: Lennon Was Right

a guest post from Larry Brooks as Storyfix.com

Instant karma’s gonna get you…

To be honest, I never really liked that song. The melody and cadence always gave me a headache, which is probably why I never really paid much attention to the lyrics.

Until recently. Perhaps it was no coincidence that it suddenly blasted through my stereo as I was working on a blog post the other day.

And it made me realize how much information is available if we’ll only pay attention.

… gonna knock you right on the head…

If instant karma’s gonna get me – and if you don’t recognize that paraphrased lyric, or the song title, or if your first thought is that Lennon was the name of a Soviet tyrant, then you’re too young to worry about karma anyhow – then I may be in trouble.

In my efforts to become an online entrepreneur, perhaps I’d violated a key principle of the physics of human relationships. What some people call karma.

… better get yourself together, some day you’re gonna be dead…

But I do understand the principle, now more than ever. As a blogger, I’ve experienced the rebound effect of getting as good as you give.

In fact, in my brief experience online, I’d say it’s the most powerful principle available to anyone looking to upgrade and grow their blog.

… why on earth are you there, when you’re everywhere…

From the outset I blindly followed the best advice I’ve ever heard: give away all the content and value that you can. Give it away freely, with a clear head and a kind heart, expecting nothing at all in return.

This is a business model that would make your economics professor roll over in his retirement home bed.

And it first, that’s what it got me – nothing at all.

But soon or later it kicks in. It works. In fact, it fuels everything. From daily site visits to subscribers and – here’s the punchline – to product sales.

… how in the world you gonna see, laughin’ at fools like me…

When I published my first ebook last summer, I applied this principle to setting a price for it. My web guru suggested I charge $29.95. It was a 100 page ebook, about half the size of a bound book you can hold in your hands, and this price was more than three times what you’d pay for it as a paperback.

Instant karma was gnashing its teeth at me even thinking about it.

… who in the world you think you are, a superstar?

So I priced the ebook at $9.95.

The orders flowed in, and more than one buyer commented on the great price. After hundreds of copies sold, not a single buyer took me up on my money-back guarantee. (Until, to be honest, six months later… that, too, is part of the physics of human relationships.)

In fact, one reader sent me $50 with a note that explained the overage was a thank you for all the great content I’d been supplying since the launch of the site.

… instant karma’s gonna get you, knock you right off your feet…

Recently I offered a two-for-one offer on two of my other ebooks, which are much longer and sell for the whopping sum of $14.95. Nearly 200 orders poured in over the next three days.

So here’s what I’d tell anyone who asks me how and why my ebooks are selling and my blog is growing as it is: respond to anyone and everyone who takes the time to comment on your site. Make gracious and value-adding comments on the sites of others who blog in your chosen space. Send a thank you note to everyone who buys your ebook or product. Not a template, send a personal message.

Be more than a part of the community, be a voice within it.

And trust the process. Allow the power of time and karma to work its magic.

… come and get your share…

Blog with faith. Blog with passion. Blog with hope and vision.

But most of all, blog with the intention of giving it all away. It’ll come back to you in spades.

… we all shine on…

Larry Brooks is the guy behind Storyfix.com, an instructional resource for writers of fiction and those who love them. He has three ebooks available through his site, his new novel is just out, and Writers Digest is publishing his book on “Story Engineering” early next year. And, with all due respect to the song writer, he prefers the U-2 version of Instant Karma over Lennon’s.

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. Aglolink says:

    An interesting article, really caught my attention this time. Instant blogging, is this reality to be faced by bloggers in the future?

  2. Sam says:

    Interesting article – you really got my interest! Lots to think about.

    Sam
    http://wordpressphotoblog.com/

  3. Larry says:

    @John – Home Gym — sorry to delay in responding. My blog launched last June. Flat for three months, then after some key guest blogs (including here), it began to take off. In another 3-month plateau now, looking for the next spike, continuing to stay the course with content in the hope that’ll work. Thanks for asking.

    Thanks to everyone for your gracious comments in response to this post. Seems like we’re of like-mind on this.

  4. Larry says:

    @Zach — you wrote: “However, I think you were fortunate enough to start blogging back when the field wasn’t entirely hyper-saturated. Now the requirements for having a reputable blog requires.”

    Just wanted you to know… I’ve only been blogging since last June. And I’m trying hard to move ahead applying the new “new” criteria you cite in your comment, especially that latter. Thanks for offering that, very valuable.

    @Tyler Davis — yeah, maybe it was just luck. Who knows… we never really do unless we stick with something, and that takes the luck out of the equation, ya think?

  5. seslisohbet says:

    Love this post Larry! Totally agree in the power of Karma and the principle of giving. And I’m like you, I try to respond and answer to every comment on my blog, every email I receive, and make a real effort to connect with my readers. Thanks so much for the inspiring read