So after writing yesterday’s post about the woman who wanted to make it as a blogger so quick, she resorted to spamming me with fake testimonials of how great she is, I began to think of the best way to describe what it takes to build up a blog. If you blog for a network, you have a couple of advantages. For instance, the pay is already coming in and you have your network’s good reputation to back you up. Still, to build up traffic, respect and loyalty takes time. For me, blogging is like dieting.
Ups and Downs
If anyone knows about dieting, it’s me. I’ve been battling weight issues for about 20 years now. One thing learned is if you want to lose weight, you have to take it slow and do it right. There’s not quick fix, there’s no cheating, and tactics to lose weight rapidly backfire. It’s the same with blogging. Traffic is best built up on a slow, steady basis. You can have your ups and downs depending on what you wrote that day, but for the most part it’s a slow, steady rise to the top.
You can use linkbait to get your numbers up, but it’s sort of like crash dieting. You have several great days of heavy traffic but pretty soon you’re back down to your average, hungry for more. Hopefully you’ll have a a few more readers (or a few less pounds) to show for it but for the most part this is a quick fix, not a permanent solution.
Taking the Time to Do it Right
The dieters who are successful in their weight loss are the ones who change their habits and steer away from the quick fix. They learn the proper portion size and eat healthier foods. Bloggers who want to build up a good traffic base also know they they have to have good, healthy habits.
Instead of going for the linkbait crowd, or writing for Digg, write good, authoritative content. Get to the top of the search engines by providing the content people want to read. The best way to keep weight off is eat properly and get enough exercise. The best way to keep the traffic flowing and rising is to provide good content and great advice.
Blogging, like dieting, takes time. Do look for ways to provide the most satisfaction, but the quick fix will soon have you back at square one. If you want people to come back everyday, if you want to pounds to come off, you have to have the right portion size, the right balance and the right attitude.
I think you make some good points – but then I see high ranking blogs with dozens of comments where the content is just not that strong. Meanwhile they have half a dozen networking links and circles on the sidebar and I can’t help but wonder if it’s not so much about the content and actually focused on the marketing. I’m not recommending a crash diet – but I’m not sure content is king anymore.
Good advice Deb! Linkbait sure is nice for getting over those nasty little weight loss plateaus though 😉
@Sylvia – I still haven’t given up on content.
@Kelly – I hear that and i still do it once in a while, but slow and steady wins the race every time.
This is a great analogy. Thanks for all the wonderful tips here.