3 Things you Won’t see in the “Blogging is Awesome” Handbook

  • Buffer

Blogging continues to grow in popularity, and has many benefits, but there is some downside. See the fine print. So do you want the good news or bad news about blogging first? Ok, we’ll start with the bad news. The last post suggested that you take a close and serious look at creating a multi-author blog versus a strict solo effort. Let’s uncover more surprises not found in the “Blogging is Awesome” handbook.

 

I Built it and they Didn’t Come

You picked a cool domain name, you’ve got your hosting setup, and theBlogging Bad News ideas are overflowing. Your logo is killer, and your site has that new car smell. You’re going to take over the world. Ah, the first post. The words are cascading right onto the screen like you’re Hemingway. This blogging thing is going to be easy. You’re dreaming of all that green and freedom.

The cursor hovers over the publish button. Click. Your post is out there for the whole world to see. An hour passes and you check your Google analytics. Hmm, where is everybody. There must be some mistake. No, there’s no mistake. How would anyone know about your post? Did you at least share it on Twitter with your 40 followers? You didn’t think it was going to be on page one of Google did you? That’s funny. Get in line.

 

Time, and more Time

It’s never ending. I’m not talking about kicking the can around and publishing a post every lunar eclipse. I’m talking about writing and generating original content on a consistent basis. It can be overwhelming. For most blogging is not a full time endeavor. It’s either part of your marketing plan where you look to give your readers some value, or a hobby where you write about a topic that really makes your heart beat. Yes, and for some it is a full time operation that pays the bills and more. It’s no cakewalk on any of these levels. The time around it surprises most. It can be a bear.

 

Search Engine Optimization

SEO. It’s a game. It’s generally in your best interest to play the game as until the clock stops. While Google, and its pets Panda and Penguin have cleaned up some of the shenanigans, there’s still more to tackle. The world will be a better place when “canonical” has no meaning and worth. Trust me. Some take it to extreme level, and with good reason. SEO done well can generate targeted traffic. All things being equal, traffic is lucrative.
 

If you can’t deliver solid content on a consistent basis, SEO can be your friend. It keeps the visitors coming if you’re on page one for some keyword. It takes some pressure of you to write non-stop. You should at least practice the SEO basics. The Google Algorithm becomes more sophisticated with each passing day, but it still needs help. SEO is that hand.
 

I’ve done zero keyword research for this piece, and I know the title is not likely to be searched anytime soon. So my neglect for SEO will result in this post having about a 3-4 day shelf life. SEO is still very powerful.
 

I was kind to only mention three things. There are a lot more. You better bring your “A” game if you want to see results. Blogging is a lot of blood, sweat, and tears. Well, at least tears.

26 comments
ChiefApostle
ChiefApostle

The information is right on target we have to learn the basic.  I am still fairly new at blogging and helpful tip I can get from a pro will help me eliminate wasted time 

WillenaRose
WillenaRose

Three is enough when they're as important as the ones you've covered. There's so much to learn and put into practice if we're going to attract the kind of audience we want. Thanks for the great post! 

angeld0ve
angeld0ve

Hi Steven, I could not agree more with Adrienne. First time I've done blogging I was spammed 2,700 in 7 days!!! I thought, "Boy, I was doing pretty good." Everyone commenting me how good my blog was and giving me compliments how good the articles! Little did I know...SPAM!!!! So, Adrienne is on target when she says that good relationships in networking is the key to getting your traffic. I don't even know what SEO really means and how they work. I don't really rely in SEO but my relationship with my readers. I just started blogging last January 2013 and it's building slowly but surely. Angela

AdrienneSmith
AdrienneSmith

Hi Steven,

 

I had to stop by and check out your post and boy are you right!

 

My first blog I built and I was so darn proud of it and no one came.  I couldn't for the life of me figure out how to get them there and I was doing SEO.  Guess back then I wasn't that darn good at it.

 

I believe in being consistent not only with your posts but with your connections with others.  It's time consuming but once you build up a good audience then that's the key to getting some great attention.  

 

I know Google loves unique and quality content that people love to share so that remains my goal.

 

Great post Steven, thanks for only naming 3.  lol...

 

~Adrienne

TomPick
TomPick

Thanks for the thoughtful post Steven. SEO basics are important, by all means. But the most challenging aspect of blogging - yet the one that will produce the greatest reward - is providing content that is valuable to your readers. Valuable content will be read, shared, and linked, and will because of those activities rank well in search without any "tricks."

donnamerrilltribe
donnamerrilltribe

You hit the nail on the head!

 

Blogging is great but is a mere piece of the big machine!  We need our blogs to create good content, engage with others and have our "Home Base."  The SEO aspect of it is important, but Google's pets are always changing.  I usually stick to a topic, mention a key word here and there and I'm good to go. 

For me consistency is the way I feed Google's pets!

Donna

hassaankhan
hassaankhan

I like the point about 'pets' of google.  lol Cool!

 

BruceSallan
BruceSallan

The SEO aspect of all this is quite daunting because it changes SO OFTEN. Google fools with their (SECRET) algorithms so we never can really figure it out no matter who you hire that says they're an expert. 

 

I guess - for me - it is TIME and persistence that has and will continue to pay off. "Pay off" may be the wrong words...lol...

HarryRorarius
HarryRorarius

Finding a way to keep writing without repeating is also a task because I find myself removing stuff that was a repeat of something else.  I have to stop writing for a while untill another subject comes along to write about. Just a suggestion maybe a suggestion box could come in handy

jupiterjim
jupiterjim

Steven,

 

You are so correct.  Blogging sounds like so much fun before you become a blogger.   Blogging sounds so easy.  I mean all you need to do is write about something that "you are really passionate about", right?   Well, actually it is fun and it is easy but only for about a month! LOL  Doing it month after month, week after week, for a little over two years now, I can tell you that it is NOT easy.   And it's very discouraging in the beginning because NO ONE is reading or commenting on your stuff!   And like your said, you should really spend some time on blog post SEO and promotion.  There there is the technical aspect of running your blog -- updates, security issues, moderating comments, configuring the proper plugins.     

 

No, blogging is definitely NOT a part-time thing or a sometime, thing.  It's month after month, year after year thing!

 

Thanks for sharing some of the realities of blogging for those who don't know!!!

 

Take Care,

 

Jupiter Jim 

SarahArrow
SarahArrow

Well said Steve, great advice as always. I find people often fail to understand that you need a blend of skills to be a successful blogger and not just brilliant writing ability. Also that people who have one brilliant ability will attribute their success to that rather than measure things and find out whats really working for them.

HotBlogTips
HotBlogTips

I couldn't like this topic more if I wrote it myself Steven. Blogging is so much more than writing great content; it's promotion, planning, research and networking. There are so many networks to share on but they are very saturated so it takes REAL interaction and that can be very time consuming. Even paid ads take experience because it's very easy to waste your money for very little results. As far as SEO, depending on your niche and topic, competition can be tough. And when we're blogging about recent events, keyword research is nothing more that our best guess and, if it's big news, we're going to be behind the mega sites that have established authority. With all that said, I can't think of a better way to spend my time; I just love blogging. :)

HarryRorarius
HarryRorarius

I would like to know how to get paid to blog

GaryHyman
GaryHyman

Blood, sweat and tears it is Steve!

haroldgardner
haroldgardner

It is so Steve...no tricks or secrets or even tips that keep it from being work.  Thanks for telling the truth...I think,

GeeklessTech
GeeklessTech moderator

 @donnamerrilltribe Consistency is the name of the game Donna.  Those pets have certainly changed the tide, and will continue to do so I presume.

GeeklessTech
GeeklessTech moderator

 @BruceSallan Hey Bruce - Yes, the SEO thing has become a moving target, but the basics should implemented.  Persistence is very important.  Showing up every now and then isn't going to cut it.  Taking a day off is almost criminal in this world.

GeeklessTech
GeeklessTech moderator

 @HarryRorarius Hi Harry - Sure, mixing it up is important especially when your blog is a tight niche and less general.  I've seen a suggestion box on some sites, it can definitely be helpful.

GeeklessTech
GeeklessTech moderator

 @jupiterjim So much more than in the brochure.  There's just too much of "start your blog in 10 minutes" out there making seem like a breeze.  We know the reality is far from a breeze.

GeeklessTech
GeeklessTech moderator

 @SarahArrow Hi Sarah - The perception is definitely that blogging is a breeze.  There's a lot of moving parts as we know.  You're never caught up, you can always be doing something.  Slow days don't exist. 

GeeklessTech
GeeklessTech moderator

 @HotBlogTips You know as well as anybody Brian.  Definitely a ton of work, and a multitude of variables.  Networking within social media takes a ton of time, and yes I agree no better way to spend the day, and night.

GeeklessTech
GeeklessTech moderator

 @HarryRorarius That's an e-book.  Some of the top methods are affiliates, Adsense (Google), and advertising on your site.  Just scratching the service.  It's a challenge.

GeeklessTech
GeeklessTech moderator

 @GaryHyman You know it Gary...Tomorrow's post will be all the good things about Blogging...