Bloggers: Thought leaders, narcissists or survivors?

By Communications

Lately it seems like just about everyone I know blogs.  Of course that’s not the case since I also know quite a few people who have never blogged in their lives (Hi Mom!).

I don’t think the high number of bloggers in my social circle is a result of working in social media or communications — I think that it is the result of many more kinds of people blogging.

When I started blogging, it was still considered kind of a weird thing to do. I hesitated to tell people about my blog and remember clearly going to my first blogger gathering and thinking, “these are my people; this is where I belong.”

While many have tried their hand at blogging, there are a few who have kept at it — who have gone the distance. Last year, the New York Times estimated that 95 percent of all blogs are abandoned. Many of the bloggers I’ve been reading for years are survivors in my book.

I believe it — blogging is hard work and some people have it in them to keep at it, and some people don’t. After all these years I still find that I have plenty to say (a symptom, I think, of being a voracious consumer of information). Blogging has served me well, contributing to a career that continues to grow and supporting an upward trajectory of confidence in my writing, teaching and speaking abilities.

Someone I consider a mentor once said she thought of blogging as narcissistic and therefore couldn’t really bring herself to do it. “Am I a narcissist?” I thought . . .  maybe a little, but what writer isn’t, a little (in the, “well why wouldn’t people want to read my words?” way.)

Klout, the self-described “standard for online and internet influence” says I’m a “thought leader.” This is good because this is what I’ve set out to become.

Are you a blogger? If so, how do you define yourself as a blogger?

If you’re not a blogger, what do you think when someone shares that they blog?

No One Cares About Your Blog

By Social Media

Here’s the deal: no one cares about your blog. No one cares about your status updates or your Twitter feed. No one.

The fact is, people care about you.

Once again I’m reminding you that social media is about relationships. No one has a relationship with a website; they have a relationship with the person who updates it, the person who posts the content that is the tweet or the update or the photo, the video or podcast.

It’s true, no one cares about your blog, but a lot of people care about you. Think about that before you post. Are you posting as a person or as a corporate bot? Are you posting as a friend, trying to make the world a better place, or as a content generator trying to boost SEO.

People do business with people.

The Content Creators will Rule the World

By Social Media, Uncategorized

Not long ago I read Super Sad True Love Story: A Novel by Gary Shteyngart a weird but worthwhile futuristic book that made me laugh and grimace all at once.

In it, the content creators are “so Media” which is a compliment as they are the most popular, successful people in the culture of the future. What are they doing to become so sought after? Streaming content constantly; the trashier, the more outrageous, the better. The rest of the population is so addicted to absorbing information that it’s practically all they do, constantly staring at their “äppäräts” — the next-generation smartphone in Shteyngart’s world. (If there was a prize for BEST USE OF AN UMLAUT IN LITERATURE this would be it.)

Is this where we’re headed?

In a way, I think yes.

As a society we’re constantly increasing the amount of time, the methods and the places we’re absorbing content. Take a look at this information from Nielsen:



We’re spending MILLIONS of hours a month absorbing content from blogs and social networks. We know, statistically, that a website with a blog gets 55% more traffic. There is an exponentially, rapidly increasing value in having employees who create content on behalf of your company.

Are your employees ready for this? Have you built this responsibility into employees’ responsibilities, schedules and performance ratings?

If there’s not a plan for developing this content within your company, are you able to outsource it? How?

5 Popular Blog Posts: Learning What You Like

By Social Media

Borrowing an idea from my friend Jay Baer in his great post, Content Lessons Learned From 25 Popular Blog Posts, and because this blog has not lived as long as Jay’s,  I’m reviewing the five most popular posts from Change the Conversation, below:

  1. Twitter: Why We Care What You Had for Breakfast Sometimes, when I’m incensed annoyed about something, I do my best writing. I guess you think so too because this post (with run-on sentences!) is a favorite so far. I think those of us who are active Twitter users “got” Twitter long before others and so have had to suffer the ridicule of others who don’t understand its power. It’s not about breakfast, people.
  2. Time vs. Newsweek and the Demise of the English Language called out a mistake and one of my pet peeves (peek, peak pique). Extra fun bonus: read the comments!
  3. How NOT to use LinkedIn: Three D’oh!s from a Real Life Example was another super popular post, probably because so many people in my network had experienced the same poorly-executed outreach. The result of this post has been an ongoing case study of what not to do and helped with instruction to others on the proper way to use LinkedIn and conduct oneself when engaging in social networking. (Incidentally, there was a follow-up conversation which took place and included a threat that I might not ever want to meet someone’s spouse in a dark alley. REALLY?)
  4. I watched a social media/reputation management nightmare unfolding in the local blogosphere and had several people direct me to it, suggesting it would make for excellent fodder for this blog. How could I resist that? As always, I try to be helpful here and redirect toward more productive use of social media and did so in Five Steps BHG Real Estate III Should Take Right Now. And you know what? I made a new friend from that one.
  5. Five Ways to Avoid a Social Media Spanking is another heavy-hitter and one of my personal favorites. It’s one of those posts I consider required reading for anyone representing their company on the internet. Share it with your employees and colleagues today!

Content lessons:

Like Jay, I’ve learned that numbers in headlines, or posts that include a numbered list seem to rank among the most popular. I will try to do more of these.

Twitter is a hot blog topic. People interested in learning about social media are still trying to get their arms around Twitter and posts that focus on that platform tend to do quite well.

You all seem to like it a lot when I get fired up about something or go after someone not following the “rules.” It’s good for me to channel my frustration into writing instead of oh, a pan of brownies, so when I’m annoyed I’ll stick more closely to the keyboard than the kitchen.

Do you have any favorites not listed above?