Since today is the beginning of Black History Month, and I’m sharing a picture of Frederick Douglass, I’d like to share this with you… but I’ll be coming back to Douglass later on.
One of my biggest commenters on this blog, who I call Uttam, wrote me an email asking me some questions about blogging when he was starting out. Believe it or not, I don’t get a lot of email asking me questions like this, even though I always offer to answer questions, whether it’s on this blog or a question here and there via email. When I sent him my response he asked if he could put it on his blog; this is the link to that post which he titled Most Common Questions Of A Newbie.
Some of you know that my main career is as a health care finance consultant. My secondary career isn’t actually blogging, but the topic of leadership. I’ve written two books on the subject, the first of which is over there to the left, and it’s the main subject of my business blog, Mitch’s Blog. Based on my knowledge and dedication to the subject, as well as how long I’ve been in leadership, I like to think I know a little bit about it.
I started thinking that a majority of bloggers are actually pretty good at leadership… at least in their own way. Some have large followings, some small. Some are niche; some are all over the place. Yet, there are a lot of bloggers who, even if they have an ulterior motive (money, influence, consulting etc), are in the long run trying to help people do whatever it is they’re writing about.
For instance, my friend Adrienne Smith changed the tenor of her blog this year. She’s writing more direct posts with the intention of helping others to be monetarily successful at blogging. Her first post of the year started that trend, How to Improve Your Blog With This 90 Day Plan. That’s taking the lead at the beginning of the year and her writing has continued working towards that theme. Sure, she’s doing it for business, but what leader doesn’t have a secondary goal of financial independence in this world?
Recently I discovered a young lady (yeah, I’ve reached the age where I’m calling people “young lady” and “young man”; sigh… lol) named Kim George who also writes about blogging and has some fascinating articles that are aimed at helping people become better business bloggers. One of her recent posts was titled 15 Ways to Get Serious About Small Business Blogging, which I thought would be a nice compliment to a post I wrote titled First Seven Steps To Small Business Blogging. Take a look at it and tell me you don’t think it’s very helpful; I dare you. 🙂
You may ask “why is Mitch talking about leadership and blogging”? I’m talking about it because last week I came across another article asking Is Blogging Dead where the writer asked two big name bloggers that question. Both said no, but one of them, Mark Schaefer said these two things:
“for most people it’s becoming harder to maintain their audience and community”
“blogging is not dead, although it’s different and is probably less important than it was a few years ago… blogging will continue to evolve with innovations and ways to connect to people with long-form content”
That’s kind of scary isn’t it? Well, yes and no. The good part is that blogging isn’t going away any time soon; the bad part might be that it’s harder to connect with others these days, for multiple reasons. These include:
* more bloggers and blogs
* more large blog communities
* fewer people commenting or sharing links
* more places for people to get their information from on social media
* video, podcasts, new communication platforms
Goodness; that’s quite a list of competition isn’t it? It’s one of the reasons I wrote the post telling people to try something different on your blog last week. I caution that there are so many people writing and saying the same thing that we all need something that helps us stand out from the crowd some way. It’s one of the reasons I have two video channels, so I can offer advice on some of these same types of subjects in different ways, like this video I did talking about creating products by talking about cookies (one of my favorite subjects lol):
A quick sidebar. I add the link after the video because some people subscribe to this blog by email and not only can’t they view the videos there but if I don’t add a link they don’t know where to go; see, I’m teaching again. 🙂
Leaders innovate. Leaders educate. Leaders stimulate the minds of others. If you blog you’re probably some type of leader. Embrace that, use that to help stimulate your mind to write more, write better, rinse and repeat. Oh yeah; share others content, either via Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, other social media or… lo and behold, your own blogs!
Why? Because leaders also embrace the thoughts and beliefs of others, take in what makes them stronger, and then helps others learn some of those extras they might not have shared before. That’s what Frederick Douglass did with Abraham Lincoln (see #2); that’s what bloggers do for others (I bet you didn’t think I would come back to Douglass did you?).
Be proud of yourselves. You’re bloggers… you’re leaders… you’re the best! 😀