With December’s approach comes the usual reflections on what’s been done and what I’m planning on doing next. Although I’ve got some long term goals already in mind for the next year, it actually surprised me to learn that I’ve been writing and posting here for almost a year already (the official anniversary is sometime in January). That also means that I have learned a few things.
Consistency matters. Aside from having posts scheduled well ahead of time, I’ll often go days without posting something. Part of that is the tiny, nagging feeling that oh my goodness, I have nothing to say. Another part is that putting it down into words is a scary thing. Hard as it is however, it is a huge key in blogging. Interacting consistently too is another thing (more on that a little farther down.)
On the flipside of that however, consistency doesn’t necessarily have to mean posting daily. As long as the post occur regularly, there’s regular interaction from readers.
Stockpile Ideas. This feeds back into the consistency thing. A lot of times I have no idea what to write a post on. Thankfully, I’ve started keeping a little pad full of ideas, so when I don’t have a clue what sort of post to write, I have a safety-net of ideas to fall back on. Something to pick out of the hat, so to speak.
Interaction pays for itself. It’s nice to be heard, especially when you see that notification someone’s liked your post or left a comment. There’s studies to show that dopamine is the cause, but the hard part on writing a post and getting that reward is the waiting part. You wrote it, and now it’s going to take time for others to read it. So what do you do instead of refreshing or rechecking the page?
Go give someone else a nice boost. Read other blogs and posts, leave likes and comments. It literally feeds back into itself. You leave a like or a comment, that person feels rewarded and they’re more inclined to come check out what you’re doing in return. It also helps if you’re willing to go check out the people who have left you likes and comments as well.
Have patience. Unless you’ve been building a platform for years, you’re not likely to have instant reactions to your posts (and even then, I’m a little skeptical). You’re not going to start out with a hundred views a day. You’re probably starting out the same place everyone else did: with just a blog and an idea.
Have patience and keep at it. Create your content, publish your posts, interact with your readers. Rinse and repeat. You’re growing a plant, not baking a cake. Unless you have resources behind you like money and serious social media presence, you’re going to have to build your blog the slow way. You have a seed, so water it, give it some sunlight and go do something else for an hour or two while it figures out where to start producing leaves.
I know I still have a huge amount to learn, but I’m looking forward to the next year’s lessons. What did you learn this year?