My 15th Blogging Anniversary: 15 Blogging Truths – Part 4
I hope this series of 15 blogging truths has given you insight into what motivates me and that it has helped you find motivation as well.
- If you missed Part 1 of my 15 Blogging Truths, you can read it here.
- If you missed Part 2, please check it out here.
- And if you missed Part 3, click here.
Having gotten navigation to the previous parts out of the way, here we go with Part 4. I like to remind people of a simple four-word rule of blogging: Your mileage may vary. That is to say, what works for one blogger may not work exactly as well for you, or something that works incredibly well for you may not work for me.
All I can tell you with these blogging truths I’m posting is that I’ve found these do work in my case, so I offer them as suggestions that may benefit you and your blogging journey.
10. Blogging Rules Matter
If you’ve read this blog for a while, you already know that I’m not a fan of what most self-proclaimed “gurus” would list as “blogging rules.” So you’re probably asking how I could say blogging rules would actually matter.
It’s a perfectly valid question.
These “rules” that people come up with matter because they’re worth evaluation. When someone tells you that you should post on a consistent basis, for example, it’s worth asking why they think that’s the case. It’s worth considering whether getting your audience used to a set, specific schedule for your new content is an advantage. (I think it is.)
It’s worth strategic planning to figure how to apply what many insist should a mandatory workflow into your workflow. If you reach the point where you realize that type of rule would never work for you, you at least have a reason that you’re doing it your way. Your strategy, then, is automatically better planned out.
I’m not one of those who believe rules are meant to be broken. I think rules should only be broken when there’s a valid reason, not just because you feel like it.
11. Storytelling Matters
Consider this sage advice from the late Don Hewitt, the creator and driving force behind 60 Minutes, to a young journalist:
“It’s four words that every child in the world knows: ‘Tell me a story.’ And learn how to tell them a story and you’ll be a success.”
Every post I publish here isn’t necessarily written as a true story. But that technique is definitely one that’s in my arsenal when I sit down to write a new post.
If we can make our point through telling a story, through humanizing a problem, that can be the most effective way to communicate an important point.
Here’s another pearl of wisdom from Hewitt on that point.
“Even the people who wrote the Bible were smart enough to know, ‘Tell them a story.’ The issue was evil in the world. The story was Noah.”
Whether it’s a story about an experience you had or a story about something that happened to a friend or acquaintance of yours, we all relate to stories. Stories can pull us into the a blog post easier and more thoroughly than just a list of facts.
12. Your Platform Matters
I said it a while back and I think it’s important enough that it’s worth repeating: WordPress is the best platform for blogging. It’s the gold standard. No matter where you begin blogging, set WordPress as your destination.
Why? Well, it’s the most versatile platform. The latest estimate claims it powers about 30% of all websites. And that’s not just blogs: other types of websites, including business sites, whether they have a blog or not, use WordPress as its content management system.
But there’s an even more important reason: the community. There’s a huge support community online and in person with WordCamp meetings and local Meetups nationwide. Because it’s the most popular platform, there are more people around who can help you when you have a crisis.
Your readers won’t necessarily know what platform you’re on. But you want to be on the best platform available and in my book, that’s WordPress.
We wrap up this series next week with the last three. Thanks for celebrating this 15th anniversary with me!