Imagine you’re strolling down the beach and you see a row of decent looking sand castles; they draw your interest momentarily, but don’t really wow you.
Then, suddenly, you come across a sand castle that’s so meticulous, it takes your breath away and you’re compelled to sit down and take a closer look at it.
Blogs consistently building magnificent sand castles are the ones that are going to attract the largest audiences. Blogs that build lots of decent looking ones will just fade away with the coming tide.
Is Good Enough Really Enough?
Can you become a popular blogger by doing lots of “good enough” content? Maybe. But I think that’s going to be harder than ever to do now. You see, that may have worked a few years ago when there weren’t nearly as many blogs out there. But now, as the “kings” have long been established, you just can’t do a good job. You must do a great job. You have to knock the socks off your readers. And this is why you’re probably going to have to spend significant time crafting your posts.
“Yes, it’s possible to write a great blog post in 15 minutes, but I can tell you with absolute certainty that it doesn’t happen very often. Most of the popular bloggers I know spend anywhere from 2 to 10 hours on each blog post they write. If you’re not, you should be.”
In the comment section of the aforementioned quote, Sonia Simone, CMO of Copyblogger writes:
“On average, I’d say it takes me an hour to write, an hour to rewrite, an hour to edit the rewrite, a half hour to find the image, and a half hour to code and check that everything looks good. So that’s four hours.” [Bold emphasis mine]
Honestly, it’s not only that Jon Morrow and Sonia Simone are really talented writer’s who’ve worked hard to cultivate their skill that makes them so influential. They also put staggering care into everything they craft which gives them a significant edge over the competition.
Are You a Writer or a Blogger?
Straight up: I’m a writer.
The primary reason I identify myself as a writer is because it compels me to exert maximum effort on my writing. If I identified as a blogger, I wouldn’t have the same motivation to give it my all.
Regardless of what you’ve been told, blogging is not just about sharing valuable ideas. When I’m reading a blog, I want its prose to have rhythm, class and clarity. I enjoy excellent writing almost as much as I enjoy the ideas conveyed. Many share my sentiment, and there are tons of blogs to choose from. Most people will be drawn to those whose writing excels.
Some readers may like when blogs update every day. I’m the opposite. When I see that a blog only publishes a few days a week or less, that conveys to me they put loads of care into each post they craft. That’s the kind of dedication that makes subscribing irresistible for me. And I hope the blogging culture begins to realize that excellence isn’t an option if popularity is the goal.
On my blog, Pun Intended, only two to three posts are published weekly, and it’s co-authored. That means my brother and I only write about 1.5 posts per week. We also proof each other’s posts before they go live. We only publish the finest stuff we can.
News flash: It’s 2010. Blogging is going to become more accepted with every passing day and more competitive as well.
And you know what I have to say about that?
Bring it on! It will make us all better writers.