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Quotable Seth Godin – From ‘Who’s There?’

Posted By Darren Rowse 7th of September 2005 Pro Blogging News 5

Here are a few take home quotes from Seth Godin’s “Who’s There?” Free e-book which I read this afternoon (and ask usual with Seth’s writing – enjoyed):

‘People have a choice (4.5 million choices, in fact) and nobody is going to read your blog, link to your blog or quote your blog unless there’s something in it for them.’

Spot on the money here. The take home question here is ‘what do you readers get out of your blog?’

‘Blogs work best when people read them over time. One frame of a movie isn’t enough to win an Academy Award, and one post on a blog isn’t enough to make a huge difference.’

I love this concept. Too often I see bloggers posting in haphazard ways that seem to have little forethought for the overall strategy and direction of their blog. One of the things I’ve noticed over my years of blogging is just how quickly you can lose readers simply by posting one or two posts that are out of character or which offend your regular readers.

While sometimes its tempting to post in the heat of the moment in response to something that gets you worked up – perhaps a better blogging practice would be to take a deep breath and give such posts a little time to sit with you before posting. This could decrease the chances of alienating your readership with posts that detract from the overall direction of where your blog is going.

Connected to this idea is this last quote:

‘So every post on a “viral blog” should be designed to get you another RSS subscription.

Every blog post should be designed to be important enough to get another blog to eagerly post a link or quote you or reprint the whole thing.’

Now I don’t completely agree with Seth here – there are some posts where you may not be aiming to be quoted or linked to – but the concept is good. Perhaps before hitting ‘publish’ a good question to ask is ‘does this post add to or subtract from the vision and goals that I have for this blog?’

Download Seth’s e-book – ‘Who’s there?’ (PDF)

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.
Comments
  1. Whilst I agree with you that it’s wise to wait until the blood has cooled before posting, I have noticed that I get more comments on posts that are (for me) controversial. I suppose the answer is to know your readers and what they’re likely to be able to cope with.

  2. Every blog post should be designed to be important enough to get another blog to eagerly post a link or quote you or reprint the whole thing.

    I just wanted to mention that having this attitude somewhere in the back of my head has been one of the biggest issues for me writing weblogs. I spend too much time worrying about whether a post is “important enough” and half the time it means I don’t post at all. I’m trying to learn to just write “good enough” posts and let the readers decide whether they’re important enough.

    I like Darren’s line better: does this post add to or subtract from the vision and goals that I have for this blog? – I can definitely write posts that add at least a bit of value or inch a little closer to my goals without necessarily writing “important” posts.

  3. I have downloaded Seth’s book but have not had a chance to read it, maybe tonight, although Lost is on tv tonight.

    What Seth say’s is common sense although we rarely use this sense.

    Darren I notice you will be hitting 1000 RSS subscribers soon, I am so envious. How about giving us some insights into how you use RSS over your sites.

    PS. Sorry didn’t intend to hijack your post.

  4. (Michael) I’m trying to learn to just write “good enough” posts and let the readers decide whether they’re important enough.

    I’ve also found that the posts I expect to do well (as defined by generating interest among readers) often don’t, and the posts I didn’t expect much out of are the ones that generate the most attention. This has been one of my favorite parts of the learning process, actually. :)

  5. That’s interesting Martin. I’m at the point now where I can predict fairly accurately which posts will draw lots of attention and which will just have a solid core of regulars commenting on. The question facing me now is: Do I stick with the original vision for the blog and so please some of the people some of the time, or do I forget the main goal and just go for the big hitters? Something tells me I should stay with my original intent but I could be wrong…

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