Here’s what is wrong with this whole blogging business…the advice most blogging A-listers can offer you is hugely valuable, but if you don’t put things into context, you are WASTING YOUR TIME. Context is everything! Without context, the information is useless, and that is a problem you need to address if blog marketing is part of your business. Are you putting things into context, or are you wasting your time trying to get results with techniques that WON’T work for you? If time is valuable to you, read on!
So many of us read Problogger (or any other popular meta blog) and rush out to win our fortunes online with a fancy new blog. Then what happens? Nothing. That’s what happens. We work our tails off and don’t see the results we expect. What’s wrong? There are two things that happen that cause failure to get results from your blog.
- You didn’t follow the advice you got
- You DID follow the advice you got
I feel compelled to submit that either way, you’re going to be thrown for a loop at some point! Why? Because the rules change. It used to be that you could follow a simple formula to get on the front page of Digg, and that would bring you a massive influx of traffic. It was a little hit and miss of course, and wouldn’t work every single time, but the fact is that you used to be able to get on Digg without a monumental effort. Today, it’s not the case.
It used to be that getting Stumbled could bring you a significant amount of traffic as well. Today, not so. I know guys like Darren Rowse (and many others; I’m certainly not trying to single him out here) have talked about the benefits of StumbleUpon as a traffic generator, and he’s telling you the TRUTH! This can’t be overstated. The blogging A-listers of today know what works for them, and they share what they’ve learned selflessly. You should pay attention to them. And you should also realize that what works for them may not necessarily be what works for you. Again, context is everything! The question for today is this: are you putting the elements of your blog marketing into context, or are you just blindly following someone else’s advice?
Building something significant requires you to be a trailblazer. Don’t expect following a generic formula to get you anything other than generic results.
Opportunities come and go. They are dynamic. They don’t remain the same year after year. What worked in 2006 doesn’t work anymore for the most part. Getting on Digg used to be a big deal, now I’d argue there are much better uses of your time.
How Bodybuilding is Broken as Well (and how it relates to blogging of course!)
This whole situation reminds me of being young, reading bodybuilding magazines. I always wanted muscles like Arnold…who the heck didn’t, right? So you read these articles that outline his workouts. It makes sense, right? If you want the same results as Arnold, do what he does. The logic is sound. Of course you’ll probably have to use lighter weights, but if you duplicate the workouts, and you’ll get great results, right? No, actually. It doesn’t work that way in most cases. Not at all.
Why is this a problem? The problem is that a number of factors are not being taken into account. First, genetics. Some people literally have a genetic ability to be able to lift very heavy weights. Also, having the ability to recuperate from workouts that intense is not something everyone can do. Additionally, the bodybuilding pros most young boys try to emulate are using drugs. No offense, but they are.
The fact is that the workouts outlined in most bodybuilding magazines are in fact, the truth. It is actually what the pros do. And if YOU do it, you won’t be able to walk for a week, you won’t be able to recuperate from it, and it might even lead to a significant injury. You have no business doing workouts like that.
So do you see the problem? Copying what the pros do does not necessarily mean you’re going to get the same results. In fact, it may very well be a colossal waste of your time. So what gives?
The Magic of Understanding the Difference Between Principle and Technique
So where does all this lead us? If modeling A-listers doesn’t work, how can you ensure you will get results with your blog? This is an important question, and it comes down to context. If you have context, you have power. Here’s how you do it.
First, let’s be clear of the difference between Principle and Technique. A lot of articles and blog posts out there talk about techniques. Techniques for generating traffic. Techniques for building a blog. Techniques for converting email subscribers into paying customers, etc. Specific step by step tutorials are techniques. They are important. But they must be put into context.
For example, if you’re reading an article from 1998 about how to build a static html website, it may have been a great tutorial…in 1998. But is it contextually valid for you NOW? You must answer this question before implementing it into your plan. Tutorials convey techniques. They are very valuable, but you have to put them into the context of your plan. No one else can do that for you. You have to do it yourself.
Principles on the other hand, are underlying concepts that work in all situations. I spend a good bit of time conveying business concepts on this blog, because my goal is to have at least 50% of the content on Next Level Blogger be content that is relevant long into the future.
Do you see the difference between Principle and Technique? Put things into context when you’re reading about how to build your blog and get the results you’re looking for. Is what you’re reading conveying a Principle or a Technique? And if it’s a Technique, does it apply to your business? Is it relevant to your present situation? If so, employ it. Use it, benefit from it, and learn from it. But first, put things into context. There is a wealth of information out there that will help you get huge results from blog marketing. However, if you don’t put the information into context, you’re wasting your time!