What is this blog? Who is it for? If I write for one person, is that a sufficient audience? What if that person is me? Do I have a goal? If so, am I reaching it? These are questions they have been on my mind when thinking about this blog.
Like most web entrepreneurs, I look at the analytics regarding traffic to my website. I know how many visitors have come to the site, where they’re from, how long they stay on the site, what pages they look at, and what links they click on. I don’t know this information about a specific person… I can’t tell how many times YOU have visited my site. But I can tell through anonymous data that this blog is not very trafficked.
You might be surprised to learn that this is as intended. I’ve never had intentions or aspirations of this medium reaching a large audience. In fact, I debated whether to share this information with the world or to just keep it privately to myself. This is truly just a record of progress. It tells the experiences I had, the thoughts and questions I grappled with, the concerns that I was willing to share with others. This is clearly not compelling content for 99.999% of the world. If no one read my blog, which if I’m being honest was what I anticipated, that is fine.
So, who besides me is this blog for? Have I concretely identified the .001%? Have I written a user story about how this reader found me, what their goals are, what do I need to give them to make them happy?
I don’t know who this is. I would hope that people who have similar entrepreneurial urges and have a service-oriented world view would find my gross oversharing useful, or at least relatable. Friends and family might be curious about what I’m up to. And of course, potential connections in the community might find this to learn more about me.
And that’s about it.
I don’t pretend to be a thought-leader. I am highly doubtful that people will ever compare me to Seth Godin or Gary Vaynerchuk. I will never have a million followers on Twitter or LinkedIn or whatever the next social media platform turns out to be.
And this is all OK.
My goal was to document the beginnings of something new after a transition, to speak honestly and candidly about this process. To tell the truth even when it’s uncomfortable. And it often is, because this is outside my comfort zone.
So what’s the goal then? How do I know if this is successful or not? Does it justify the effort? For me the goal should be to document, teach, and share–if not every day–very frequently. To build the discipline of creating, and making a contribution to the world. So far, I have not been successful in this. As the workload from projects has increased, this was one of the first things to get back-burned. I fell into a common and well-known trap.
This as a typical problem for small business owners; in fact, people from every walk of life struggle with it: How do I find [time/energy] to invest in my [business/future] when I am 100% busy trying to [run my business/live my life]?
In other words:
How do I focus on what’s important, not just what’s urgent? How can we switch from short-term to long-term thinking?
Awareness, first. And discipline, sure, but more importantly, it’s solving problems by creating a process. Define a process which will affect the change you were looking to make. Implement the process. If you don’t get results, change the process and try again. Repeat until you get the results you’re looking for.
So, here are the changes to my process.
My process for proactive creative output / Version 1
- Start dictating my writing into Siri, instead of handwriting, then retyping as I was doing before. Like I’m doing now. Then edit into something resembling good English grammar.
- Time-box the editing process. I can spend no more than 30 minutes tweaking the Siri-output before posting. I can author content any time I’m thinking about it, but will only wear the editor for a half-hour.
- Lower my expectations for MVC (minimal viable content – 🙂 you heard that term here first!). Create something every day, and allow myself to go back and kill entries that didn’t hold up or just weren’t interesting.
- Keep a Seinfeld-style chart. I have had success with this in the past, so I know it works.
- Enable post-via-email. Reduce one more barrier to the creation process by easily posting from the same device I author to content on.
- Never post on weekends, and encourage content creation during that time. The creating and sharing mindsets are very different; I’m reserving Saturday and Sunday exclusively for the former.
We’ll know soon enough if this process is working, and is it sustainable. If not, will adjust course as needed.