C h a z z W r i t e s . c o m

Write and publish with love and fury.

Is blogging dead? To blog or not to blog?

As we move into 2015, I’m reevaluating what works and what doesn’t. In talking with another author, I suggested that blogging is all but dead. I could boost traffic to this blog by posting twice or more each day and pushing hard. However, I’d be luring back many of the same people. Blogging, for me, doesn’t pass the evaluation required by the 80/20 rule. There are ways to blog better and draw more eyeballs, but I don’t think that’s the most efficient use of my time. (Your mileage may vary, as always. I’ve got too many books to create to devote that much writing to blogging.)

It’s not that blogging hasn’t helped me in the past.

If blogging was all I did and if I was working a different business model, it could work. However, the odds against are steep. There is little time and plenty to do and not that many destination blogs. By “destination blogs,” I mean blogs we feel we have to visit every day. The best blogs are those that don’t need to remind you to check them out.

Sure, there are a few blogs that stand out.

I anxiously await the latest from The Passive Voice each day. Seth Godin’s blogs are short, pithy and easily digestible. Copyblogger is a place I should visit. However, the truth is, I only check out a few blogs on a regular basis.

A fellow author challenged my thinking on my stance.

His said blogging isn’t dead. It’s just that too many bloggers do it wrong.

I really took my time thinking about that. If true, that means that most of us are doing a bad job, and by most, I mean a staggering majority. We’re not all that dumb are we? Gee, I hope not. So…

Nope. I don’t buy it. Reading habits have changed from 2006. Those popular blogs are the few outliers. If you don’t have heavy traffic to your blog, don’t feel bad about it. You’re with the vast majority.

What am I doing instead of reading a lot of blogs?

I’m listening to podcasts. We’re listening to Smart Passive Income, the Sell More Books Show and the Rocking Self-publishing Podcast. 

YouTube and podcasts are where the action is. Through podcasts, I’m reaching out to readers on the Cool People Podcast and the All That Chazz Podcast. Blog reading time (and sadly, much book reading time) has been displaced with conversations overheard and videos shared. We’re multitasking, running on treadmills, doing dishes and commuting while listening to conversations from Stitcher and iTunes. Maybe my podcasts aren’t huge, either, but there is less competition there and there are other audiences to reach worldwide.

Besides podcasts, we’re also listening to audiobooks whilst doing the hamster wheel thing at the gym. (So create audiobooks.)

That said, I do continue to blog.

I’ve made a lot of friends through this blog, several of whom I’ve worked with. I came up with two books from this blog. However, my Pareto Principle Assessment stands going forward. I don’t blog every day but, when you subscribe, you’ll get a notice in your inbox when I decide I have something to say. That’s usually 2-3 times a week, not 2-3 times a day.

If you want to build your author platform around your blog, I’m not saying you shouldn’t. I’m saying it’ll take more effort than I’m willing to invest. That’s a project that’s a challenging time management problem and it’s not for me. I do enjoy blogging and, like all my writing, it’s a compulsion and an itch to be scratched.

Going forward, I’ll be creating and co-creating a lot of books this year. The math is, fiction that sells forever has to be the focus.

The choice isn’t really binary, of course, but I’m putting my weight behind more books and podcasts. I’m not alone in this assessment, either. I’ve noticed several more authors who are turning their efforts to video and audio and leaving blogging to trail behind, almost forgotten.

What’s your choice? Have you noticed you are reading blogs and books less and listening more?

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Filed under: author platform, blogs & blogging, , , , , , , ,

9 Responses

  1. Reblogged this on Armand Rosamilia and commented:
    Is Blogging Dead?

  2. John L. Monk says:

    My approach to blogging is not to try to be a great blogger — and I’m wildly successful. I see my blog as sort of a parking spot for all-things-Me. All my news (not much), anything I find interesting that I wanna look at later, stuff about my author friends or whatever — all of that can go up on the blog. Also, if Amazon or whomever ever makes things intolerable for self-publishing, I can always distribute my stuff right off the blog. And who knows what the future may hold?
    Good luck in whatever you do 🙂

  3. Jay Dee says:

    I’m having a great time blogging. I’m blogging more, communicating more with other bloggers, I’m even reading books and other blogs more. I’m writing my own book more. I feel more motivated when I’m busy like this. My blog is getting busier, as well. I don’t think there’s any wrong or right way to blog. People do it for themselves, mostly. I just write what I like, and that’s good enough for me.

  4. I think a lot of bloggers ARE doing it wrong, but a lot are doing it right. Focused content, short posts that don’t require the reader to scroll down a lot, relevant content. Yeah, it’s a lot of work. However, the consensus seems to be (at least from the professional writers I’m around) that if you’re trying to get an agent you still need a blog to establish your brand and presence. You just need to be sure to link it to other social media vehicles. I saw this reposted by a good friend on FB, and now I’m here commenting.

  5. Great post, and as you know, I’ve been blogging a lot less and writing a lot more (I wrote 5 books last year). If I was writing full-time, I’d probably keep up with the blog more, but I have to pick and choose what takes my time. I’m revamping my website to have a blog there that will focus on my fans, not on other authors. We’ll see where it all goes. When I do blog on To Become A Writer, they are shorter posts that don’t take much time. And I do want to get into podcasts, but alas, it’s another thing to learn, set up, etc 🙂

  6. I’ve thought about video blogging via Youtube or something. It seems a bit popular as well. Haven’t thought much about the podcast, but I might prefer it to the v-blog. I’ll be publishing a website as some point this year, and I’ll have a blog there as well. My website blog will concentrate solely on my work and my readers.

    Personally, I like to read blogs as I can do that more often than listen to something. And I think in blog writing, people can get to their point more often and edit easier, while in podcasts and v-blogs it’s too easy to wander off point, and harder to edit later.

    I also like writing a blog. But my WordPress blog is a bit casual, not really geared toward writing and I blog on a various topics. So I can write a Haiku, post a tidbit from my latest book, or rant about how some jerk on the road cut me off and almost ran me into a pole. 🙂

  7. Stacy Claflin says:

    I listen to podcasts far more than I read blogs. They are a great way to consume information, and I can listen to them when I’m doing things that don’t take much thought, like cleaning and cooking.

    I’ve decided to change the focus of my blogging. Actually, I don’t have a focus. I’m just blogging about what I feel like blogging about when I’m not posting book updates or giveaways. It’s freeing to give up a focus/schedule and I think that if I have more fun with it, readers might enjoy it more also.

  8. Yahooey says:

    A few unorganised thoughts:
    Blogs and podcasts are two different experiences. I can’t read at the gym and I can’t listen while reading.

    Podcasting is trending. Media attention for “Serial” has brought a new listeners and new shows. That said, NPR plus it’s alumni are becoming the elephants of the podcasting world. Their radio quality productions is going to make it harder for other shows and there are only so many hours in the day for listening.

  9. John says:

    Funny you should mention this just now as I was re-evaluating BLOGs yesterday. I have never gotten any valuable responses to my book blog but on another subject (Machine Embroidery) that I have been blogging for over 10 years I consistently get, depending on the time of year, 10k to 15k hits per month.

    On this embroidery blog both beginners and advanced users of computerized machine embroidery use my blogs. I have turned the blog into a book but it has not sold any copies. It is advertised on every post. I don’t get it.

    Plus, after the first two years of posting I have posted nothing new yet I still get the same number of hits (one month I got a record 33k+).

    Interesting?

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