Every once a while, I am reminded of a post from Seth Godin in 2012 – “Doing it wrong, relentlessly.”
Doing it wrong, relentlessly
According to this post by Neil Patel, I blog incorrectly–missing on at least 7 of his twelve rules.
I’m not writing to maximize my SEO or conversion or even my readership. I’m writing to do justice to the things I notice, to the ideas in my head and to the people who choose to read my work.
The interesting lesson: One way to work the system is to work the system. The other way is to refuse to work it.
I remember wading into the comments of the original post and had many thanking Neil for the great advice. After all, as a couple of the comments pointed out – “that’s easy for Seth to say. He has a blog with a few hundred thousand followers after all.”
I’ve reflected on this post a few times. Among the things it has taught me, two stand out.
First, we need to understand what we’re optimizing for. A few years back, I experimented spending a bit more effort publicizing these posts and carefully looking at my page views and analytics. These efforts barely lasted a week. Every aspect of my being seemed to reject it. I learned quickly that I wasn’t interested in optimizing those things. Now, of course, the results would be great to have. :-) I would, of course, love it if these notes resonated with many more people. But, I wasn’t ready to try and maximize it by investing time into self promotion. It just wasn’t/isn’t me. Besides, time is scarce and I’d rather spend the extra time making sure my post for the day is clear and concise.
Second, there is a huge market for easy-to-implement advice. Easy-to-implement advice often assumes certain things about what you are trying to do. Seth’s blog is not remarkable because he writes a certain way or keeps his posts to a certain length. It is remarkable because he’s written, and shared, every single day for more than two decades. That isn’t easy advice as a receiver. It is much easier to be happy with advice that says there are just 12 things you need to do every time you post.
But, as I’ve come to realize, good things are always hidden among the hard things.