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 the 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.