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3 Reasons Why I Don’t Worry About the Competition

I was recently asked who my blogging competitors were. I struggled to find an answer to that—not because there’s nobody else blogging in my niches, and not because I’m not aware of other bloggers in my niches, but because I don’t really worry much about them.

Image by ElMarto

There are three main reasons for that.

My main “competitor” is myself

I’ve always been much more interested in beating my own previous performance than beating somebody else’s. This isn’t a recent thing—when I started blogging, I felt the same way. I remember creating monthly spreadsheets of my traffic and income and always aiming to beat the previous months’ efforts. I’d also try to keep the monthly increases going to beat previous good streaks.

The benefit of competing against yourself rather than other people is that you’re always attempting to keep the momentum moving forwards—you never become stagnant. When you compete against others, if they go backwards or even give up, you’re given an excuse to take your foot off the accelerator. When you’re competing against yourself, there’s always a record to beat.

There’s not enough time to be defensive and competitive

There are only so many hours in the day, and I simply don’t have enough headspace to spend that limited time worrying about what somebody else is up to and how I can beat them.

I see the online publishing space as having so many opportunities at the moment that there is enough room for more than any one player. To get defensive about staking your claim takes your attention away from expanding your own business in a positive way.

That’s not to say that I’m not watching and taking an interest in what others are doing in (and outside) my niches. But I’m not doing so looking to block them or stop them growing. I’m doing it because there are opportunities to partner with them and grow the niche to everyone by doing so (more on that below).

I’d much much rather spend my time and energy building something positive and useful than spend my time and energy worrying and getting defensive about what others are doing.

Competitors are potential partners

The other reason that I don’t concern myself a whole lot with competitors is that in this space there is always opportunity to partner with competitors. With this approach, everyone achieves much more than they could alone.

I guess in some ways I could see blogs like CopyBlogger as competing blogs, since some of our content overlaps at times. But the reality is that by supporting and even promoting what Brian and his team have built, and at times giving them a leg up, I’ve won a lot too. Our niche has grown and so, too, have our profits. It all started very simply (from memory it was Brian sending a link for me to promote … which led to him doing a guest post … which led to a long-lasting and mutually beneficial and profitable friendship.

What’s your attitude towards your competitors?

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. Carla Easley says:

    I absolutely love the 1st and last points that you made. I am my own competitor and competitors are potential partners. Instead of trying to compete with others in my niche, I’ve learned to collaborate with them.

  2. Great stuff. I don’t worry much about competition either. There is plenty of love to go around.

  3. Hi Darren, yours is the best approach in any business and in blogging more than anywhere else. Thanks for spreading the word because people will believe it when it comes from you:)

    PS. And congrats again on the new baby to you, V and the big bros!

  4. Joe says:

    This is like working out and being on a diet plan without ever looking at the scale until you see the full results.

  5. Last point sums it up perfectly – why compete with each other when we can partner up, reach more people and build off each other. Good post I enjoyed the read :)

  6. Yes.. I’m totally agree with you Darren. In order to get success not only in blogging but in all thing we do, what we need to focus is how to make or do something better than before. There always huge opportunity to win the competition if we are think creatively not competitively. Thanks for this amazing staff.

  7. M.-J. Taylor says:

    I agree; I have no competition: there is an audience for everyone, enough business to go around. In any way I can, I embrace abundance. It is not always easy to “hear” my limiting beliefs, but that’s all limitations are: beliefs.

  8. I love this post! Collaboration and cooperation done well can enhance and increase profits and business growth! Savvy bloggers probably do this so well with guest blogging and sharing posts…everyone benefits!

    Being our own competition is also a great idea – striving to better results, better systems and I guess just to better your best.

    Thanks – I really enjoyed the read.

  9. Murtaza says:

    Truly Agree Darren!

    Since starting my blog I have never felt competition. Because of my way of writing, Expressing ideas along & Creative Content makes me ‘YOUnik’ among my readers.

    After all It’s a Shareable World! The more we share the better person and popular blogger we become.

    Thank You!

  10. Paul says:

    I have a Voodoo doll I use for competitors.

  11. Joyce says:

    fantastic piece… not about vanity but competing against oneself instead of others.

  12. Eric says:

    This is so true with both blogging and running (for most people). Of course there will be others out there, but if you just work to better yourself, you will continue to achieve better things. Competitors as future partners, race competitors as running companions. Good stuff!

  13. I totally get this. When I first started building EveryoneCanWeb.com I was looking at Weebly, iPage, Google Sites, and etc. To be quite frank it gave me an anxiety attack because it was suddenly me and my small business vs. these huge companies I had to “fight”.

    Once I started competing against myself all my inspiration came back because I was bettering myself and making a better product every time I accomplished something.

  14. Lisa Kanarek says:

    This is excellent advice for blogging and any other type of business. Some of the more successful projects I’ve worked on were co-efforts with a competitor. Thanks!

  15. That’s an interesting way to put it. I agree, there is too much competition going on. We are at times are own worst enemy, and we need to learn to fight it and fight it well. Keep fghting the good fight, Darren!

  16. Tara says:

    I definitely think it’s wise of you to not worry about fellow bloggers. Everybody has a different viewpoint that relates to somebody. If everyone has the opportunity to share, all readers can find posts they relate to. By considering yourself your main competitor, you are only going to make yourself a stronger writer because you know what you are capable of.

  17. Ally Levin says:

    Great perspective to have. It’s amazing to me that some people still don’t understand that if we partner up everyone wins.

    http://blog.moscreative.com

  18. Tatianna says:

    I completely agree with this post. All my life I heard from people around me always saying watch out for competition, and I am the total opposite of that. I believe there is enough for everyone and it’s best to be your own competition then trying to compete with others. I some how find competition very negative and I love to embrace other people’s work as well as my own. Everyone has something to offer, there is no need to compete! I believe this state of mind creates positive energy and that brings success.