100 Days of Blogging...ridiculous.
To completely copy Guy Kawasaki, here's a top ten list of things I've learned about blogging...life...love...well really just blogging.
10. If it's about money...walk away.
I'm not going to lie...I thought blogging might be a good source of what my father calls 'beer and pizza money,' $20 here, $10 there that lets you get an appetizer with your dinner. Nope...at least not yet. You won't ever post if you don't enjoy it...and those google ad clicks only come sparingly.
9. Material is harder than you think.
This is actually the third blog I've started. The other two lasted six and three posts respectively. They all started off of sticky notes full of ideas for a book....but those ideas run out REAL fast. You have to keep reading, keep searching, and keep engaged to blog about stuff...especially business.
8. Business blogs are a 180 from college life.
I generally blog at night and on the weekends. My weekend blog views are generally about half of my weekday views...and morning views are always better than later on. One of the toughest transitions of college to business, I think, will be the time change. Business time is more like high school.
7. Newbies have to pay their dues.
My favorite bloggers, Seth, Guy, John (basically my whole blog roll)...were all big timers before the started blogging. I'm willing to bet they had fairly strong readership within a few weeks of starting their blogs. Doesn't work that way for the newbies, though I'd like it too.
6. Trackbacks are NOT dead or "Please Don't Kill Them."
Both Seth Godin and Steve Rubel wrote a while back on the death of trackbacks (Seth more on the expansion of other mediums to get ideas across...but those are a LOT tougher to utilize). I hate that many bloggers have to remove their trackbacks for various usage reasons. Trackbacks are (sadly) generally my biggest source of page views. They're also how I've found quite a few of my favorite blogs. I have made a commitment to never be a 'link baiter (see below),' and only use a trackback if I feel I'm truly adding to their conversation. That's the beauty of the blogosphere...expansion of conversation. So...while I understand that people misuse trackbacks all the time...forgive them and bring your trackbacks back.
5. Add to the Conversation.
Going off of both #9 and #6, a major source of ideas come from reading other's blogs. Many bloggers just link to the posts...authors with a large user base can do this since they're actually sharing it with their readers, those like me with a much smaller readership shouldn't. If you can't add value to the conversation taking place...don't use the trackback...link if you'd like...but add something. If it's worth linking to than it should have made you think enough to add your own insight. In my top 5 most viewed is a link to a Seth Godin post...which I (cleverly) called 'A Purple Sheep?' It pointed to Seth's article, then showed what it made me think about...I think that's good linking. Link baiting, in hopes of stealing readers with trackbacks, hurts those of us that would like to use trackbacks for what they were meant for.
4. Brevity is the Soul of Wit.
Guy Kawasaki and Ask the Wizard are generally the only blogs that I read that consistently have really long posts. Their reputations precede them and it's worth it. Most long posts from other bloggers I skim over...just too much to read. I'm AWFUL at this, but am working on it....and if you're reading this I'm impressed, I probably wouldn't have made it this far.
3. Blogging is better than reading textbooks.
You learn a whole lot more. If I was a business professor, my students would write business blogs while in my class.
2. Be excited.
Guy calls a milestone in business something you'd run home and tell your wife. I find that my best blog posts are ones that come up in conversation with my girlfriend (helps that we're both business majors).
1. Be candid, have a voice, write what you want, enjoy it.
It's not my business, I don't have readers who 'count on me,' and it's not my entire life. Hopefully my ideas are strong enough that they help someone somewhere...if not...I enjoy writing them, so that's enough.