Last week, we had a big discussion about what it takes to make your blog stand out.
In the comments, something came to my attention: Writers have a lot of fears about doing it wrong.
If you’re afraid that one flub will sink your blog, I can help.
I can prove to you that it’s just not true.
How? Let’s take a trip down memory lane and review all the things I have done wrong on this blog…
My blogging boo-boo parade of shame:
- My initial design really sucked. I mean, it was brown. And weird. You couldn’t really tell what my header graphic was supposed to be. I didn’t know anything about design when I started, and had to learn the hard way that design matters.
- I have dates in my URLs…and now it’s too late to change that without breaking links and creating a huge mess.
- My ebook was too long and expensive. And took too long to write and publish.
- My ebook wasn’t available on Kindle. Like duh! But it was only a PDF. Lamesauce!
- I only had one ebook for about 3 years. Way to go on creating a marketing funnel, eh? Pretty shamefully low output. I’ve just added one small new one on writing productivity. I’m trying to get better.
- I sometimes launch products without any marketing cycle. I just put them out there. I run out of time to organize a campaign to do pre-promoting and all the stuff you’re supposed to and just have to give up.
- I don’t do A/B testing on my sales pages to optimize them and improve conversions. I can’t figure out the technical end of how you do it, and it never seems to get onto my to-do list. I know my friend Derek Halpern is going to come over and hit me now that I’ve confessed…but there it is. I just don’t have that killer, make-every-possible-dollar instinct. I feel like the people who’re interested in what I talk about here will subscribe, even if my button should be a better color or I should have used 16 pt type instead of 14.
- I don’t do enough key word research. Seriously, I hardly do any. I know I should be researching more of what people search on that brings them to this blog and then writing more posts with those words. I know. But I mostly go with my gut of what I think writers need to learn to earn more, that I can boil down to post size and give a snappy headline.
- I don’t have a popup. You may know that you can convert tons more visitors into subscribers if you use one of those annoying pop-ups. But I hate them. I considered using Pippity because it’s less aggressive…but I found the idea of having a popup makes me nauseous. So I don’t.
- Sometimes my feed fails. I set the publish time wrong and then it misses my RSS ‘send’ deadline. And then my post doesn’t go out. Then the next day it goes out twice. I apologize in advance for when it happens again.
- I suck at marketing emails. Earlier this week I sent one that said [NAME] in it because the auto-fill-in thing failed because it wasn’t coded right. I mean, honestly. That’s just embarrassing. Thanks to everyone who didn’t unsubscribe.
I’m sure there are more glaring errors I’m guilty of, but that’s a good list to get you started.
Now that I’ve shared this, I can let you in on the blog secret that nobody tells you:
You don’t have to do everything right in blogging
And there is no one right way, anyway.
Blogging is an imprecise art. Typos are tolerated. You can see top bloggers running posts with grammar and spelling errors every day.
You can make a lot of mistakes, and still be a solid success as a blogger.
How? All you have to do is care about your readers, and help them.
And be yourself. Be honest.
Those are the things that matter.
If you do that right — and keep building your relationships with them and learning more about how to help them — your blog will be able to grow and thrive.
You can learn as you go, keep making your blog better, and keep building your audience.
What boo-boos have you made on your blog? Leave a comment and tell us about it. Or tell me more things I’m doing wrong. Either way.