Should Bloggers Be Great Marketers?

Evening approaches and the carnival barker that lives inside my head is screaming at me because I haven’t spent time promoting my posts.

Wrote a solid 10,000 words but didn’t publish most of it for no reason other than I just didn’t feel like it.

Maybe it is fatigue, maybe it is frustration or maybe it is a combination of both but it doesn’t really matter now does it ‘cuz I didn’t press publish.

Didn’t press publish because for a moment I wanted to buy the sucker’s bill of sale that if you write it they will come.

There is a whole section in that last link in which I talk about how bloggers need to have realistic expectations. It is good stuff, solid material and if I ever write an ebook I’ll probably include  it.

Should Bloggers Be Great Marketers?

Some people think so.

They’ll fill your head full of thoughts, ideas and dreams about what you can accomplish by becoming an effective marketer.

Ask them what is required to take your blog to the mythical next level and they’ll tell you about how you can build a blog Voodoo Doll that will stifle your competition and cause your readers to see your content as being the most insightful, exciting, entertaining and profound stuff they have ever read.

All you need to do is swing a chicken over your head and promise to fill it full of your sins. Afterwards you put that sucker down, cut off its head, smear some blood on the keyboard and howl at the moon.

Really, that is all you need to do to make your readers think that reading 10,000 stories about how hard it is to change a diaper on a plane or to take 2 kids shopping at Target is classic reading.

Don’t take that the wrong way new parents. Some of us are a bit jaded these days

Some of us are a bit jaded these days and even though we remember being crazed about every last detail about parenting once the bright and shiny wears off you don’t quite remember it the same way.

Doesn’t mean we don’t love our kids any less. It just means that the five second rule makes a boatload more sense.

That is the beauty of experience, after a while you see your kids don’t break very easily.

But What If I Broke My Boy

I am a damn good father in large part because I had great role models and much of this comes naturally to me but that doesn’t mean I don’t have those moments where I hope I didn’t break my boy/girl.

That is not a reference to anything physical but a comment about how I react sometimes when I see how they respond to certain challenges.

They’ll go on about something that happened in school that I think is minor and I wonder if I screwed them up and made them less capable of dealing with the crap we all have to handle.

And then I remember that when you are in 5th grade or finishing middle school you don’t always respond like an adult would and I relax.

But that doesn’t mean I don’t get to pull out the old “act your age” line that every parent has used from time to time because every now and then it is useful.

Musical Interlude

  1. Ain’t Back Yet- Kenny Chesney
  2. Somewhere With You- Kenny Chesney
  3. Tunnel of Love- Bruce Springsteen
  4. Happy- Bruce Springsteen
  5. Institutionalized- Suicidal Tendencies
  6. Tangled Up In Blue- Bob Dylan
  7. Life’s Been Good- Joe Walsh
  8. Reelin’ In the Years- Steely Dan
  9. Carefree Highway- Gordon Lightfoot
  10. Hurt- Johnny Cash

It Wasn’t Worth Getting Arrested

People still read this post and ask me to tell them the whole story.

I probably shouldn’t be surprised because sometimes they read this one and ask for more details too.

It does make me wonder if I should spend more time writing those stories because they seem to get more traction than some of the others.

On the other hand I know if I write more posts about mean girls and how to unfriend people on Facebook the readers will find their way here too.

Still posts like What Is The Value of a Comment are a guaranteed hit because bloggers love to write and read about blogging because somewhere out there we are going to figure out what tiny little step is preventing us from getting book, television and movie deals.

The Secret To Being Successful

Sometimes my kids ask me to share my secret to being successful and I want to stop them because I don’t feel like I have reached that point yet.

I want to stop them and point out how many times I have fallen short of the mark I set myself but I don’t because they don’t need all that negativity.

And because when I look back at it all I see a lot of success and a ton of victories and I think about how it could be a great teaching moment.

But then I wonder if I am spinning things in my head and decide to go a different direction.

So I tell them the secret is to be willing to work very hard and to know how to pivot, sidestep and adjust when life requires you to move.

If you learn how to go along, you can get along.

Now if only I was better about listening to my own advice.

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  1. Mitch Mitchell March 24, 2015 at 8:47 am

    Should bloggers be great marketers… depends (doesn’t everything?)…

    Why do we write. Are we writing for publicity? Are we writing for business? Are we writing just because we like to write?

    With Thursdays post (upcoming) I’ll have hit 1,600 posts on one blog; I’m close to 1,200 on another blog. A little more than a month ago I realized that I wanted more people to know about me, the blogger, so I started promoting more on Twitter. What’s happened? The blog’s getting more attention, I’m getting more attention, you and I finally talked (lol) and I now have more people following me and adding me to lists and at least visiting the blog.

    So, should we be great marketers? Well… I certainly wouldn’t call myself great, but it turns out being better than I was is producing some results. Can being even better start producing great results? Guess we’ll find out. 🙂

    • Jack March 24, 2015 at 9:50 pm

      You are right to start with establishing what our goals are. I have had multiple conversations with bloggers who talked in general terms about what they hoped to achieve but never went anywhere because they didn’t establish any goals.

      If you don’t have any you can’t create a plan to meet them and… Well you know.

      Anyhoo, I think if our desire is to be read, seen and heard by others we have to work on our marketing efforts. People won’t come just because we wrote it.

  2. Vicky March 19, 2015 at 6:52 am

    “Pivot, sidestep and adjust”…. Yes!!! Parenting and life in general is fluid, always changing and molding to its “container” of circumstances. If we refuse to adapt when necessary and remain rigid we will spend most our lives complaining about how everyone else doesn’t get us! And we will fight a lot of unnecessary battles.

    As for marketing…. I work in digital marketing. I write all the content and do all the marketing. I work 25-30 hours a week. Is what I do working? Yes. Do I have another 25-30 to dedicate to my hobby? Nope. Do I’ll live with my tiny numbers and am grateful for my faithful commenters- like you.
    Well done, Jack.

    • Jack March 19, 2015 at 5:36 pm

      I keep waiting for someone to show me how their life went in a straight line so that I can point out all the times they were forced to deviate and shift.

      Maybe they’ll prove me wrong and I’ll see that straight line and I’ll ask them how they did it but I am very skeptical.

      The big question for me is whether you like what you are doing. If you enjoy the time you put in that is work worth doing.

  3. Gary Mathews March 19, 2015 at 3:51 am

    Can I get on the sneak preview list for the yet unpublished Ebook?

  4. Janine Huldie March 18, 2015 at 5:35 pm

    I seriously need to listen to my own advice more, but that is a different story for a different day, I suppose. But still must be something in the air, because yesterday, all I wanted to do was write about mean girls and have a draft all ready to go in the next few days once I edit a bit if I am feeling adventurous enough!

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