The ULTIMATE secret to a successful blog

I had a revelation the other night. I realised that I’d figured out THE ULTIMATE SECRET to having a successful blog.

No, I really have.

It’s got nothing to do with building massive follower lists, optimising your content for SEO and keyword stuffing your opening paragraphs.

No, it’s much, much easier than that.

It’s not about taking photos of sunsets. Though I must confess I’m rather chuffed with how well this one turned out.

Sunset over Sandal Castle

or cute meerkats. LOOKIT THE CUTE MEERKATS!


Are you ready?

It all boils down to this: No-one cares about  your blog.

That’s it. That’s the secret.

No-one cares about your carefully-crafted, keyword-stuffed headline. No-one cares about the amazing photos or the words which you’ve agonised over and which took so long to pull together.

People see the new post appear in their RSS readers, or on an email and they skim it. You’re one of a million different things trying to get attention.

The real secret to a successful blog is not to care. I don’t care that people don’t read the posts. I don’t care that they don’t look at the photos and click on ‘like’, or retweet my lovingly-composed and carefully-researched essay on this or that.

I do this for me.

I write the words to get them out of my head and to save them for later. I take the photos so I can remember that amazing sunset or that cute meerkat.

And in the months and years to come, I can look back and see what I was interested in on that day, at that time. What little sliver of life caught my eye. What thoughts were running through my head then, and there.

Now, if you happen to read it, enjoy it, learn something new or get something out of it, I’m utterly thrilled and delighted. If you choose to spend some of your precious time and mental bandwidth hanging out here to see what I’ve been up to, I’m honoured and privileged to have you here.

If you like photos of sunsets, you’re totally in the right place.

I’m writing this for me.

But I’m glad you’re here.

Author: dave

Book reviewer, occasional writer, photographer, coffee-lover, cyclist, spoon carver and stationery geek.

8 thoughts on “The ULTIMATE secret to a successful blog”

  1. Dave, this is realisation I came to about my writing. I worried endlessly about what Aunt Mabel will think of that, or what my literary friend will think of this. I once read a piece of writing advice, saying we should write with one reader In mind. I struggled to pick which reader I wanted to write for, because even though my biggest fan might be a good choice, she might not like my current work in progress.

    That’s when it occurred to me that I write because I want to, and therefore I should write for me. No one else has to like it, but I do, and when someone else does, it’s wonderful.

    It’s immensely freeing. Thank you for reminding me that this is also why I blog (apart from the fact that as an author, I need a social presence!)

    Oh, and it’s nice to know that someone else in the blogosphere agonises over their words and takes days working on a post.

  2. Just read an ebook by John Morrow, that said if want to build a popular blog, you need to:
    1. Make friends with influential people
    2. Get them talking about you.
    And that’s it. Sounds way to difficult for me, so I gave up.

  3. Absolutely! Blogging should always be a personal thing, for the writer themselves, and if other people enjoy reading (and sharing, and commenting) then that is a bonus. It’s sometimes difficult to step away from the stats and the reach and all those other things, but I find when I manage it I do my best work (in my opinion!).

    Caring about what you do is fine – caring about how it makes you feel is much more important than caring what other people think. Although being careless is not to be advised 🙂

    Thank you for the reminder!

  4. Oh I love this post! Wiped my blog clean in no small part due to that lack of insight… almost tempted to start again based on this idea. Also, don’t underestimate how much of a lift your uncommented-on posts bring to people’s days. Even if they’re utter failures (*cough* guilty as charged *cough*) at remembering you can’t just psychically intuit that from the aether!

  5. Amen! Exactly! I started my blog for ME first. My blog isn’t the ‘biggest or greatest’ but it is MINE! ❤ And I'm having fun doing it!

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