June 18, 2012

Keep blogging even after you fracking hate it

http://goinglikesixty.com/wp-content/uploads/2007/10/i-have-nothing-to-say.gifChris AbrahamThere’s no reason to ever let your blog go fallow. Unlike leaving farmland unsown for a period in order to restore its fertility as part of a crop rotation, there’s no benefit in ignoring your blog. To be honest, it really doesn’t matter what you do to keep your blog running on a daily basis, but it’s essential that you don’t allow your blog to be categorized as “archived” by search engines, to say nothing of being forgotten by your readers. First, I will address why keeping your blog updated is essential to search engines and how fickle Google is. Google is worse than a Harvard Dean when it comes to judging you. “What have you done lately” is the name of the game and it is better for your career as a blogger to write filler during those times you’re not in the blogging mood: you’re having a crisis of faith, distracted by something else, or time-crushed by a well-paying job, for example.

As I have said before, Google’s judging your posts less on exactly what you write but how often you post. Since Google only has a finite number of nanoseconds in the universe, it prioritizes content based on several factors: quickness of your server, popularity of the content, links to your content from other well-regarded sites, as well as how often you post.

If you post a couple of times a day, Google will be sure to allocate enough nanocycles to make certain that Google is the very first on the block to spider and index your content and offer it up almost immediately in its version of the real-time-web. If you post a couple of times a week, then you will only receive the commensurate resources; and if you never post, you will be relegated to archive, a static resource not needing more than a periodic diff ping to check to see if there have been any changes.

This can happen very quickly, especially in these heydays of social sharing and the exponential growth of global web content. Google needs to conserve and preserve resources, so the moment you don’t keep your platform populated, your reputation, your search-ranking, and your Whuffie — and you can see this reflected directly and in real-time if you spend any time looking at your income on AdSense or if you keep rigorous track of your Klout score:

If you miss way too much school, you’re going to have to repeat; if you miss a little too much school, you’ll have to go to summer school.

So, maybe it’s a better idea to spend some time pulling C’s for a while until you’re back up-to-speed instead of dropping out or missing school. If you’re too overwhelmed, maybe transfer from Harvard to ‘Nova for a little while, but keep up the studies!

So, keep on blogging, even if you’re just calling the posts in. You probably will be surprised that you’ll have more success with your gimme posts that’ re basically popping out mindlessly just to get it done. Sometimes, just a quick morning post that’s 80% excerpt and 20% your commentary is more than enough to keep your blog relevant and at the top of Google’s search algorithm’s resource allocation.

For me, as you can see from my personal blog, Because the Medium is the Message, I have been worthless since my mother passed. Everything else has come before blogging, except this once-a-week obligation I have kept up for my friend and mentor, Mike Moran, the bloglord here, and so my personal blog has basically become a photo blog, documenting my recent life, which is easy and simple enough for me to do.

And things are steady as she goes — the ad revenue from AdSense is pretty consistent now that I am keeping the blog moving forward, even if they’re just snappies from my check-ins and time at the range or in church. It doesn’t matter right now. The choice is not between writing good, vertical, passion-filled, and popular posts or posting my personal snappies, it’s between posting snappies and abandoning my blog. Lots of folks are closer to abandoning their blogs every day — and most do — and I recommend against doing that. Keep that baby going, by hook or by crook. In fact, I bet you that my readers — what’s left of them — are honestly getting to see I side of me that they never would have otherwise based only on my long-form, writerly blog essays.

On the other hand, I have basically abandoned Marketing Conversation, which was stupid, since there was quite a lot of equity built up. I broke my own rule and MC has gone from being in the actual AdAge Power 150 to plummeting to 252nd — and it didn’t take very long at all to happen. I squandered all of that equity and I daresay it’ll take at least six-months to a year to bring it back to where it was.

Don’t let that happen to you. Better to get all your homework in even while you’re suffering from your own private mononucleosis, even though you’re tired all the time, don’t feel like it, and basically hate blogging — because it won’t always seem so stupid, so worthless, and so pointless — what’s stupid is throwing away all the work you have put into your platform up until now just because you’re having a temporary lack of faith. Your faithlessness is temporary — you’re probably burnt out and just need some time.

Until you’re recovered and healed-up, do the daily minimum to keep that content churning. Learn from my mistake! Don’t kill that favorite house plant you’ve been feeding and watering and sunning for a decade just because you’re not in the mood for a while. If all else fails, give your blog away to someone else who can use it for a little while — allow your friend or associate to build up his or her reputation on your platform; or, if time is more important than money, you might consider to outsource your blog content while you’re super-busy. It’s probably worth it.Chris Abraham is a partner in Socialmedia.biz. Contact Chris via email, follow him on Twitter and Google Plus or leave a comment below.

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