This is a light humored look at blogging through the eyes of experience.
If you read between the lines, it is also an insight into what it’s really like 12+ months down the track of an active blogging career.
You know you’ve been blogging too long when…
1. Everything’s a Post.
Everything that happens to you as you go about your everyday life becomes potential blog post ideas.
The way that Gloria Jeans (StarBucks) systematizes their coffee orders is undoubtedly an insight into the future of caffeinated email marketing – and surely there’s a post in that!
The worst part – and this is where you get the uber confirmation that you have been online WAAAY too long – is when you are jotting down notes with your trusty pen and paper and you make what you think is a spelling mistake, but when you don’t see the word automatically underlined in red, you shrug your shoulders and keep writing.
Obviously wasn’t a spelling mistake after all 😉
The salt is then further rubbed into the ‘too many ideas’ wound because you will ultimately never have time to publish said post anyway, and it will sit in your drafts folder as nothing more than a title and an idea… for as long as you both shall live.
2. Really Simple Syndication? The Irony
RSS is all about Syndication (Really Simply put).
So why is it that when you’ve got your finger on the pulse of the world do you completely lose track of what is actually going on?
I remember back when a Headline was the front page of the newspaper or that snippet you got 30 split seconds before the actual 6pm News aired.
Now a headline is the key to survival and the only thing I have time to look at in my reader.
Breaking News is something that could only possibly come from Darren Rowse or Pat Flynn, and a News Anchor; well that’s just really poor keyword optimization – that’s what that is.
The way you talk to the world has changed significantly.
The way the world communicates has changed a lot, but you seem to embrace it to a point where you just might be squeezing the life out of it.
You know you’ve been blogging too long when you:
- Sign your credit card statement @your keywords
- Only talk to your partner when they tag you in a Facebook photo
- Confirm information using hashtag searches in Twitter
- Get more spam in your inbox in a day than your entire family gets in a month
4. B.L.O.G. (?)
You can no longer define what a Blog is.
What’s worse is that you can’t actually define what it isn’t either.
There used to be a time when a blog was web log, now it’s branched 😉 out to be an entire forest.
I have a niche blog that I have not updated for 6 months, but it’s still a blog?
Then of course
there is the ‘Blogger’ him/herself.
Define that and see how you go?
Are you only a blogger if you are in the make money blogging niche? And what is the make money blogging niche anyway? (Don’t go there, your brain will hurt and it won’t do anyone any good).
If you think about it hard enough EVERYTHING’S A BLOG!
Why even my local Maccas (McDonalds) is a Blog. Well, they have a comment box at least.
30 minutes have elapsed since you hit ‘Publish’ and still no one has commented!
Thoughts of a mass power outage across the entire eastern seaboard of the United States, or an error in your RSS Feed cross your mind long before the abhorrent notion arises that you’re just not that popular.
This links in very closely with the other very relevant aspect of Popularity and that is in the care factor.
Like an old banged up car on its last legs your ‘give a shit’ factor towards your popularity will rise and fall, cough and splutter – finally to come to rest in a permanent state of ‘whatever’.
Only when you reach the ‘Whatever’ stage can you truly provide value to your readers, and only then do you open the door to true popularity.
Irony can be a bitch sometimes.
6. Return On Investment (ROI)
It’s been a week since you went blog hopping and over a month since you left a comment.
You used to care, but now you really couldn’t.
You want to – I mean it’s one of the reasons you are here today, but you’ve finally had the wake up call that only time can deliver – R.O.I.
The Return on Investment becomes the measure to which everything is accountable and as a result you realize that time spent on quality content far outweighs that of social engagement. You’ll still engage of course –
but this time when you get on the comment train and join the social circus you’ll actually have a destination in mind, a reason for going there, and a suitcase full of content.
Finally – you know you’ve been blogging too long when you insist on using the number 7 just because it seems to be the most common number used.
Apparently chosen because it psychologically increases clicks and sales (?), you go with it because – well just because!
You don’t know why you can’t be happy with 6 – or even 8, but you will go out of your way to either edit down or worse – remove information to fit it into 7 spots.
Then of course there is the worst crime of all – adding a 7th point when there is clearly no reason and no value that can possibly be added.
Of course, I would never do that..
I could have added another point and said that when you have been blogging too long you write posts like this – but I think that I sort of said that indirectly anyway.
Providing value to your readers as a blogger is about knowing who you are and exactly where you are going.
If this means you need to be selfish for a while, then allow yourself to be, it’s perfectly OK!
When the oxygen masks drop down from the ceiling in an airplane, you MUST help yourself before helping your children or others – take this same principle into your business blog marketing and stop worrying about what others think!
Blogging: If you’re Trying to Fake it, You’ll Never Make it.
Alex Whalley is the owner and founder of Build | Rank | Profit: The Niche Site Marketing Blog and the Principle Consultant at BuRP! Consulting, a Sydney based Search Engine Marketing Firm. Connect with Alex at the official Build Rank Profit Blog and learn EXACTLY how to Build, Rank, and Profit from Niche Sites today!
Images: Concept by Paul Bradshaw and drawn by Alex Hughes.