How I Used Bad Headlines and Jedi Mind Tricks To Make A Billion From Blogging
Every now and then I like to write posts that poke fun at other bloggers who try to fill our heads full of rules and regulations about how we should blog and what doesn’t work.
Rules and I don’t always get along very well and not just because I am insouciant and given to whims of fancy where I dream about defenenstrating those who irritate me.
It is because here in the magical world of social media there aren’t many rules at all other than “be nice to others” and “sustain your effort.” Ok, that is not entirely true nor does that provide a good explanation for how to make a buck while blogging.
But unlike other bloggers I don’t lie to you and claim to be making tons of cash doing this. Yeah, I am calling out all sorts of people with this post and suggesting they put their money where their mouths arr- open the books and prove you are making real money because I don’t believe it.
My Old Kitchen
The picture up above is of the new kitchen we put in my old house. I loved that kitchen and when we moved I was disappointed to say goodbye.
The kitchen is the heart of the home and that one was special. The funds that I used to pay for the remodeling came from my pocket and were not from blogging.
Ad sales paid for most of it, online ad sales. Yep, once upon a time I sold online advertising for a living so I know a thing or two about this business.
Some of you are trying to fool the good people of the blogosphere into buying your special blend of BS but more than a few of us recognize it. Some of you won’t last much longer because your cash flow is about gone.
Sadly that doesn’t describe all of you because you have alternate sources, like your spouse/savings or daytime job to pay for your snake oil sales.
I Am Just Writing
I haven’t given out names because I don’t want a flame war and it is possible I am wrong about some people. But that is ok because I really am just writing because I find in joy in it.
Not just joy in the journey but joy in the moments and minutes where I figure out which letters go where and what words work best. That joy is why you keep seeing these posts show up in your feed/reader/inbox.
It is part of why I don’t always feel the need to spend lots of time writing headlines. Jayme blogged about bad headlines and shared how sometimes I use sexual innuendo to drive traffic to my posts.
I suppose that is true, but what is also true is that if headlines are foreplay I rush through it.
Don’t get me wrong, headlines can be fun to write and not just the innuendo kind. I rather enjoy trying to come up with something more clever.
But time constraints dictate how I work and I never have all day to just sit around and play here so I have to get to the writing. I have to get to the words on the page bit so I push through the headlines.
People Don’t Read
I also know that many people don’t read. They skim the headline and make a split second decision about whether they are going to click their way into the blog to read that amazing post we just wrote.
The benefit of writing good headlines is that you have a better chance to generate traffic that way than by just throwing mud at the wall.
My method isn’t based on traffic. It is based on getting to write so that I can experience the joy of the journey. These words speak to me and I can’t get enough of their soft caress.
And after all these years I have learned/proven that people will read my posts. It may take longer to generate the larger traffic numbers but the community we are building is really solid and that is worth a lot.
Billion Dollar Blogger
Maybe one day I will be the first billion dollar blogger and maybe I won’t, doesn’t much matter to me as long as I am still having fun.
Ok, that is not entirely true either, a billion dollars would be nice but the joy thisÂ jobÂ generates is substantial.
What about you?
erwin November 22, 2012 at 5:40 am
It’s nice read your article Jack. I am not a pro but I want to make a billion from blogging like your headline. I still a newcomer so I need to learn more from guys like you.
Tim Bonner October 30, 2012 at 3:48 am
I find writing posts on my blog gives me a purpose beyond being the stay at home dad.
I enjoy it, although my wife thinks I sometimes place too much pressure on myself to keep the blog going, get around and comment and think up other things I can do beyond the blog.
Sometimes my headlines suck but I’m trying to make that something to work on more.
I won’t pretend to make money out of blogging because as yet, I don’t!
Jack November 2, 2012 at 6:36 am
Purpose is important. I love being a father. There is no greater joy, honor or responsibility, but there is significant work that comes with it. Some of it can be mind numbing at time and we need to find things that give back to us so that we can recharge our batteries for our kids.
Brian D. Meeks ( October 29, 2012 at 9:57 am
I’ve often thought I should put more care into my headlines. Occasionally, I feel like they are good, but mostly I just try to put something up there that makes sense for the blahg I’ve just written.
When I look at the number of clicks that Triberr generates, it does seem there is a wide variance. This must be related to the headline, because that is all people have to go on when they are making their decision.
All of this points to the need to take it more seriously, and yet, I probably won’t. That is just who I am.
Jack October 29, 2012 at 9:40 pm
Headlines have a lot of influence on what gets shared on Triberr which is precisely why I should be more cautious and circumspect in creating them, but I just don’t like operating that way.
I suspect if we were to spend more time digging into this we might find our reasons for why we do or do not are very similar.
Joe October 29, 2012 at 7:50 am
We redid our kitchen last year and love the changes we have made. Totally agree with you about the kitchen being the heart of the home. Whether at my house or at my grandparents’, I think I grew up in the kitchen! And that meant I was always eating. No wonder I had to lose weight as a kid…
I’m with you as far as bloggers selling product as well. I haven’t bought anything from anybody yet. Their sales pitches are very good, but… There are a few select bloggers that I would buy something from, but they seem to give all of their content away. I wish a couple of these guys would write a book, I’d be first in line.
Jack October 29, 2012 at 5:07 pm
I miss the old kitchen and look forward to the day when we have one that is ours to do with as we will. Some of my best memories come from time in or near kitchens.
I am willing to bet we’ll see more people start writing books. As self publishing becomes easier and more prevalent it will push more people to jump in with both feet.
Kaarina Dillabough October 29, 2012 at 6:08 am
Keep having fun. And when you have the billion dollars, you can always send some my way:) Cheers! Kaarina
Jack October 29, 2012 at 5:00 pm
When I have my billions I’ll need a coach. Putting you on speed dial now. 🙂
Jayme Soulati October 29, 2012 at 4:31 am
If headlines were foreplay…kill me. I’ve had a convo or two about your headline writing, kinda like the bait on this post, Mistah.
Great caption; made me want that “old kitchen” and wondered why it was old when it looked so new, yet it was in a previous house and thus, the “old” kitchen. Got it.
Jack October 29, 2012 at 4:39 pm
What is the purpose of a headline? To attract attention and convince the reader to come visit. Mission accomplished.
The old kitchen was beautiful. Custom cabinets, Blue pearl granite, Travertine floor, GE appliances…
Betsy Cross October 29, 2012 at 3:09 am
I am my favorite writer, reader and commentor! LOL! I love rereading things I’ve written. I get transported emotionally to the time I wrote it and I think what if I hadn’t written that down? The thoughts would have been lost. It has become almost like a journal to me.
I’m really starting to enjoy writing!
Keep up the sharing, Jack. I enjoy reading your stuff!
Jack October 29, 2012 at 4:33 pm
I think that it is great. It is one of the things I appreciate about blogging. It is nice to have a living journal we can refer back to. I am glad you got back into writing.
Ralph October 29, 2012 at 2:49 am
Fun is fun. Work can be fun too. Work without return can get tedious. Being able to recognize even the smallest advancements is hard work. Hard work can be fun too.
Jack October 29, 2012 at 4:28 pm
Work can be fun and if it is consistent it transitions from work into fun all the time.