Looking in the rear-view mirror can be fun and enlightening. I took a sentimental look back on July 4, 2013 at my 2 year mark on twitter: A Twitter Anniversary on America’s Birthday and learned a few things that shaped much of my current thinking.
Another “mini milestone,” is the 1 year mark of this blog:
Hustle or Bust: Where Old School Meets New School.
This has been a fun project, one that started with few expectations other than to “unload the brain’s filing cabinet” at the near midway point in a career in business. I compiled these lessons from a review of Google analytics plus some conversations along the way with my network.
It became clear early on that there is an entire industry on “building a perfect blog” that encompasses SEO, traffic generating tactics, plug-ins, commenting, theme design, social media promotion, etc. It can be downright overwhelming!
- My strategy? Block it out! Learn enough for an appreciation, but it’s easy to get consumed with it and spend 90% of your time in this space vs. putting out content.
Writing is like a muscle: It only grows stronger when you work it. Correction, muscles only grow stronger when you work it hard enough to tear them down, so they can re-build. One session in the gym won’t do anything, writing is no different.
Life tends to “blur” in a social world (and the real world too).
- Some people do a nice job of “compartmentalizing” their life between work, family, friends & play time. I simply do NOT, it all blends together. It is hard to distinguish where blogging starts, social media ends, and everything in between. They all need to work together with one cohesive (authentic) voice.
- For the record, I hate the word “authentic.” It’s one of those buzz words. Give me the OLD SCHOOL “Real Deal.”
Like the marketplace, its very difficult to predict what resonates with people.
- If I were handed a list of my 100 or so blog posts titles and was told to RANK the top 10 traffic generators, I would have only been 50% accurate. Its borderline damaging to the ego to see (in your mind) brilliant posts that don’t get half the traffic of posts you thought were average at best. There’s a lesson here for those planning-obsessed MBA types…..
Blogging can be a solid lab for business ideas, principles and tools: Put them on paper, then share them with people around you for feedback. 4 posts in particular come to mind that generated great conversations with business colleagues and partners. Ironically, only 1 made the top 10 most visited post list below.
By far the greatest source of satisfaction comes from the connections and relationships that result. While not completely attributable to H&B, it certainly plays a role. I cited 11 such relationships in The Coffeehouse Test for Online Relationships
Now For The Geeky Stuff: Top Posts by Traffic According To Google Analytics
2 Posts (the bottom of the traffic ranking) provided some great discussion. Probably because they hit “nerves,” either near and dear to their own industry, or just a strike to humanity.