Throughout the many years of having a blog, I’ve tackled the idea of growth in a few different ways. For example, reposting the same content to multiple places in order for it to be viewed more, or taking the one post and sharing on as many social networks as possible, and even attempting to change my content to what the analytics told me that people liked.
My theory behind all of these actions was to try and grow the number of visitors to my blog and to increase the number of people that would read my writing. And in a lot of cases, I wanted readership to go up, because then I would get a higher amount of money from advertising, possibly even end up with sponsorships, and be able to dedicate more time to my writing.
After a while of not exactly getting very far, I decided that it wasn’t worth the effort to try and “grow” my blog. But instead, I should just keep going, sharing a link to Twitter, and possibly one or two more places depending on the content. Because that way, if anyone liked my writing, there’s a chance they might share a link somewhere, and the growth would be more organic and sustainable.
I wrote recently about leaning into your own perspective when writing, and it comes from a similar thought process I had when thinking about growth, and deciding where I want to take this blog in the long term. I essentially took a step back and examined my situation. I wasn’t making any money really on the blog through advertising, not much more than paying for the hosting and domain name. I wasn’t particularly interested in running a blog dedicated to a certain topic or audience. And I started to not care if people liked what I was writing.
That made me think, if money isn’t going to be a significant factor in any decision, and I have no desire to write for a specific audience, then I may as well just write for myself. Then if people like what I write about, then great, and if not then it doesn’t particularly matter. Because if I decide that I want to write for this blog for another 10 years, and the idea of making a living from my blog isn’t realistic, then I think it’s a much better decision to focus on what I want to write about, and my own perspective that I can share. Rather than trying to fit in with everyone else, and create nonsense posts that don’t interest me or anyone else.
So to wrap up, I think my attitude towards growth has evolved from simply wanting a huge audience, to wanting an audience for the benefits of making a living, to just not caring about it at all. That’s not to say I don’t want people to read my writing, I’m just not writing with the goal of gaining more readers. That job is up to the quality of my work alone.
Photo: (Markus Spiske / Unsplash)