Last Thursday I spoke at an ASMP event titled, “Social Media Secrets Revealed,” about how blogging has helped my business grow. For those of you who attended, thank you. For those of you who couldn’t make it or were too far away, you missed a great show! Rosh Sillars was the keynote speaker and had some great tips. Pascal Depuhl, Jorge Parra, Scott Coventry and I were additional speakers who shared our own personal success stories. My story was about how blogging has really helped my business. It is often overlooked by artists because we think our work speaks for itself. But in a world where clients want to know who they are hiring, the blog is your new resume and portfolio.
When I talk to people about blogging, there is often a lot of fear surrounding the idea of it. Some common fears are related to insecurity, weak writing skills, lack of information, and the list goes on. Insecurity stems from the misconception that someone else out there probably knows the topic better. Many people are anxious that writing isn’t their strong point and so are afraid of not sounding eloquent. Some have a false belief that they should first gather more information and then blog when they really have something of epic proportions to say. Whatever your reason, just toss it out. My first blogs were terrible (and some still are). I mean really, really awful. And the pictures that I took back then, well, I wouldn’t be putting any of them on my website today. But it was material. It was content. It was a starting point. Writing anything is almost always better than nothing. Nothing will get you nothing. Often, the idea of writing for the entire online community is daunting. Sometimes it helps to imagine that you have no audience, that you are just writing for yourself.
So, where do you begin? What would you like to tell someone about yourself or your work if you were writing in a journal and could say anything, for example? Write that. Add some visuals if you have them; if not, oh well. Post what you wrote. In the beginning your audience probably will be close to zero. I have been posting so infrequently that I’m pretty sure the size of my blog’s audience is back down. But, even if it isn’t, I prefer to imagine that it is because if no one is reading my blog and I’m just writing to give Google some fresh content to crawl, the pressure is off! I have yet to lose a client because of a blog post (knock on wood it doesn’t happen in the future). So, I have nothing to lose and everything to gain, which is the same for you!
So your homework this week (for those of you who already have some sort of blog platform up): Write a post. Even if it is a post about never getting around to posting (I think I have at least 10 posts like that). But write something! Break the ice!! You have to start somewhere!
If you don’t have a blog yet, you have a bigger assignment: Figure out what platform you want to use to blog (research WordPress, Blogger, etc), learn how to install it and get to it. Or get a buddy who is computer savvy to do it for you. If you have no computer savvy friends, hire someone to do it. Just figure it out and do it!! Worst case scenario, you don’t install it correctly and have to try again. Practice makes perfect and eventually you will get it!