I started blogging in 2011. This was my first blog. I didn’t know what I was doing then. I knew I had a passion for writing and I knew I had to get a platform where I could post the things that I write. That was all about it. I didn’t know how to write what I wanted to write and I didn’t know how to get people to read what I’ve written. All I did was to write whatever came into my mind.
And then at some point, I got lost in the maze. I realized no one cared. I put a lot of work into the things I wrote but somehow, no one cared to read and even give me a feedback. All through my blogging experience then, I had only one comment and that comment came from a girlfriend. She sent a comment because what I wrote was about her.
Nobody cared. I stopped caring too. So, I stopped posting. My last post on that blog was this one and it was posted on the 26th December 2014. At some point you give up when no one cares, right?
Two years later, I was back again. This time with a different zeal. I promised I was going to do it whether or not I find readers. I’m back after two years hiatus and still, the arena hasn’t changed; it’s still difficult getting someone to care.
The problem is this.
There is a lot of competition out there when it comes to blogging. There are millions of blogs out there and thousands of blogs get started each day. What it means is that, on a daily basis, millions of contents are pushed out there for people to read. Your content is just but a dot on the map of contents that gets published on daily basis.
To make matters worse, your small blog gets to compete with the well established and trusted bloggers such as Set Godin, James Altucher, Neil Patel, Mark Manson and the likes.
Maybe you’re thinking your blog is going to be local so you don’t have to think about these global blogging icons. Locally, the blogging arena is even tighter because there are Ameyaw Debrah, Yen, OMG and a lot of blogs coming in from the popular media houses. It’s hard getting people to care for your blog.
That aside, you are also going to compete for attention with news-worthy individuals such as Shatta Wale, Asamoah Gyan, Counsellor Lutterodt and many other huge political figures in and around the country. I hope now you’re telling yourself; “it’s not easy being successful with this blogging thing.” Yeah, you are right. It’s not easy. But it’s possible. You can break out regardless of all these hurdles. The only thing you have to know is this; It takes a lot of time and a lot of work.
How then do you manage?
It all starts with getting just one person to care about what you are doing.
Every blogger’s dream is to get millions of traffic to their blog each passing day. You want your blog to be the most read and the most talked of. Any time you check your blog, you will like to see hundreds of comments from hundreds of people expressing delight for your work. A dream of this nature doesn’t just happen.
I have a post that’s almost 9 months on my blog and it has only 7 views. Yeah. But I remember the work I had to put in that post and the sleepless night I had to endure just to get it ready to be published. All that for just seven readers. Things like this is enough to make you reconsider your desire to blog. Especially when you judge the success of a blog by the number of traffic.
Instead of thinking about the numbers, start from finding someone who really appreciates your work. When you do, start writing for that one person. It’s also easy to manage one person. You can begin building a relationship with that one person and asking for feedback time and again. Get it right for that one person and he’ll become your ambassador carrying your good works around.
You use a smaller audience to build yourself up for the future larger audience. You correct your mistakes with the smaller audience and take all the time you can get to learn and improve on your work. You don’t have to disregard your current audience because they are not many. Many starts from one. Every successful blogger had had to endure this phase where they felt like shouting in an empty room. This is your time. Take it as rehearsing for the future larger audience.
Know this also;
Building audience takes a lot of time. Beatles played for a lot of years at strip clubs around Europe before they were able to amass the kind of audience that made them “popular than Jesus Christ” as John Lennon will later say. You don’t just wake up one day and see traffic booming on your blog. It takes time. It takes building a relationship with that one reader. It takes responding to every comment left on your blog. And then it takes a little more than you anticipated to get the larger audience that you desire.
For now, pretend you are performing in an empty auditorium. The chairs are empty but pretend you’re delivering a speech in a thousand capacity auditorium. When one day you finally break out, even your older blog posts would be read as new. Until then, keep engaging with that one reader. One is always better than none.
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