Today I ask the question:
“Do you prefer comments on a Blog, or conversations on FaceBook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and other Social Networks?”
I prefer Blogs, I like to keep the conversations here, not spread over multiple Social networks, at least here everything is self-contained. It’s easier to pull together smart thinking when all the comments and thinking are in one site when a question is posed. Now, having said that, you’ll notice this Blog doesn’t get many comments, maybe my content just isn’t interesting, or people just don’t agree and don’t take the time to let me know. It matters not, this is my space, it’s also a space for people who are interested, like-minded if you will, in my research, my point of view, my perspective, my foresight…it gets cataloged here on this Blog.
Now, I can’t control where you want to talk about my ideas, my blog posts, I just go where you are….when I have the time. The easiest way to get my writing…sign-up for my updates, then it hits the Inbox, that’s where we can have real in-depth conversations.
I understand it’s easier to comment on a Social Network, I publish to Social Networks with the hopes you will come here, at least then you might look around, read more and get exposed to more of my ideas and thoughts.
So if you aren’t commenting here, you may have already answered my question, or maybe…you never thought about it before. Never the less, feel free to comment here, I would love to get your view on the topic.
Do you prefer Blogs Or Social Networks?
Five years ago, March 1st, 2010, I wrote about what Blogs might look like in 5 years, I also threw out some numbers that I predicted would happen. Let’s go back and see how close I was back then.
Here is my opening paragraph:
“I can’t help but wonder what blogging will look like in 5 years, blogs for the most part are static and becoming integrated with Social Media Tools. There’s only 1.7 Billion people on the net and over 235 Million Blogs out there. Projections clearly show that over the next 3 – 5 years 5 Billion people will be on the Internet. Will Blogging be the primary platform? I don’t think so, everything is going more and more mobile, on the go.”
At that time only 1.7 Billion people were using the Internet. There were ONLY 235 Million Blogs, and data also suggested that in the next 3 -5 years there would be 5 Billion people using the Internet.
Today, over 3 Billion people are using the Internet, that’s 2 Billion short of projections, but that’s mostly due to the speed in which Internet access could be provided. Google & 3BNetworks are making the Internet available to all the 3rd world countries, but not as quickly as they had hoped.
The number of blogs on the Internet today is, well….seemingly impossible to track, there is no accurate count that I’m aware of.
Let’s look at paragraph #2:
“Will there be a place for blogs? Will there be a need to for content to be new and fresh multiple times a day? The money won’t be the content, it will be in the filtering and curation of content produced. More products or systems will be invented to manage all this data, data will be connected to data, there will be a huge need for filtering.”
There was a time, recently…that blogging was considered dead. But ask the question, will there be a place for blogs? Obviously blogging is not dead, and there is still a place & need for blogging. The money in blogging is actually the content, original content…there is bigger money in the curation, and the delivering of that filtering and curating. It’s kind of like the retail market, the channel of distribution, more information, curated, and lower prices. Whoever has curated a large amount of data, and has figured out how to deliver it to the masses at a low price, and even free, is making large piles of money. Not much has changed here, the old way, or the old attitude still prevails here, in terms of how we think about business, and how it is being done. One thing still rings true, it’s impossible to read every blog on the Internet, so those who filter and curate have a leg up.
And the last paragraph:
“There is much to do, and it will be interesting to see how things scale as the rise in Internet users climbs to 5 Billion. How will it impact your business? How will it impact your blog? How will we rise above the noise we can’t rise above now? The answers are forth coming, but we haven’t figured them out yet. We better hurry, time is running short. Will this blog even show up on the radar screen, it barely does now! So many questions and so many unanswered. We spend hours a day working on our blogs thinking it will look and feel the same years down the road. But I can help but wonder, what will blogs look like in 5 years?”
All these questions are still valid today, why? It boils down to one thing….we still haven’t made the paradigm shift. We are still hanging on to the old ways of doing business, organizing business, and we are still trying force feed an Industrial Age to the masses. We just can’t seem to embrace the change required, it’s too hard I guess.
In some circles, change is happening just for the sake of change, and in others, it’s moving to fast to accept as a new way of life. No matter how difficult it might be to make this paradigm shift, the blog doesn’t appear to be going away, everything is just more mobile. Mobility is here to stay, and is also changing, technology is being embedded into everything these days, including our clothes.
So, was I wrong? Sure, but not because I should have been, I was wrong because most of what I saw, and see today, is just taking longer, but it’s still going to happen. Is blogging dead, not by a long shot…you’re reading it now : ) And yes, there is still much to be done. To be honest, I’m disappointed in where blogging is today, but that to is changing. I am concerned as well, technology is fooling us, we are allowing it to control our lives. Texting and driving is all the proof I need.
It’s midnight, I’m thinking about the past year, wondering if I made a difference to any business owner in my community, my Twitter followers, my blog readers and….. It’s a fair question, you probably ask yourself the same question many times. In fact, you may spend too much time asking yourself that question. If you truly want to make a difference, Go and make a difference! Go, do that thing you are passionate about, you will touch someone’s life and you probably won’t even know it.
I attend many events in my community, most are surprised when I show up, but I need the interaction with smart people. You can only speak from a stage, from a microphone, a blog, or even a workshop for so long. Eventually, you’ll want to see eyeballs, hear real stories directly from the sources, maybe in their own surroundings. The words Social Media don’t really say enough about what it really means, we tend to forget the “Social” part, but it’s the best part, it’s the awesome sauce.
I have a few social engagements in my calendar for December, maybe we’ll run into each other, and I’ll bet there’s a great story to share. Make sure you step away from the keyboard, better yet, go master the deadlock on your front door and get out and see the people. The people are what makes the Social in Social Media, media is actually cold and unfeeling, why would you want to just do that?
Social Networks are environments, cultures, and places to learn, because that’s where the people are, and no matter how much you avoid it, the Future Of Business means people. You will never have success without them, and what they want from you is simple, they want access to you. They want to know you, even spend time with you, that’s where the real value is, and eventually, the Gold.
When you get around the people, and you are doing what you were meant to do, you are making a difference. So GO! Be a human business, one that connects with others, one that connects businesses, Go and be with the people, help them achieve their goals, and you will be blessed beyond your wildest dreams. Make that your goal for 2012, I hope you do because I can’t wait to hear your story when you do.
Lately, there have been a number of blog posts floating around on the topic of, well….blogging and traffic. Some claim they blog as an outlet to get stuff off their chest, some just like to write, some are hard core and want people to come clambering to their site so they can eventually sell you something. All are valid reasons to write blog posts, or what is considered blogging. But let’s be honest here, if you tell me you’re writing and don’t care about traffic, I don’t believe you!
The only reason anyone puts something out on the NET is to get attention, traffic, and readers, saying anything otherwise, you’re not telling the truth, nothing but the truth. Most of us blog because we feel we have control over something, we rarely have control if you have a Boss, period, the Boss has control not you. So that one is out of the way.
I have come to the conclusion that, we blog with the hopes of something better is going to happen in our lives. Better could be something as simple as having many people come to read your writing, say nice things about it, praise you and your efforts, and even encourage you to write more often. That would be enough for some wouldn’t it?
Something changed in the blogosphere over the past couple years me thinks. Commenting on blogs happened more frequently in the past, but today those comments are no longer static, they have become Tweets and Updates on Social Networks. Suddenly, you feel empty, left behind, even forgotten. Frustrated might be a better word, you did nothing wrong, you kept writing and responding to comments, but people stopped leaving comments, and took them elsewhere, thinking you would come along with them. That didn’t happen did it, you didn’t want to go where the comments went, you want to stay at home on your home base, your blog.
I write about the Future Of Business as I see it, as my research reveals it to me, and I put it all here on this blog, I like that. I like it when I see the light-bulb come on when you read what I have posted, when you comment and share how you feel about a particular thing I’ve shared. It’s awesome! But do you think blogging is becoming a lost art? There are many new ways to share your thoughts, Google+, Tumblr and so on. These canned, easy to you use systems are making blogging something of a has been, blogging suddenly is becoming hard work. I don’t mind hard work, but I like to work smart too!
The truth is, I see blogging as a great place to build personal brand, even if these other systems are easier, at least here on a self-hosted blog, you can shift gears easily, you don not have the same limitations canned systems have, you can only do what they let you do. And that’s all I’ve got to say about that.
I said it earlier under TRUTH! If you are putting anything out here on the Internet, you are looking for attention, traffic, and to some degree, validation. Why? Because we don’t get it in places we thought we would. Father’s go to their day jobs everyday, the people they work with say how smart he is, or she, only to come home and discover they don’t know anything. The kids think you are old and stupid, could never understand, yadda, yadda, yadda. You know it’s true, your boss thinks you are lazy, or stupid, and so on, even our Mother & Father’s did that, and we can’t figure out why we aren’t happy all the time! What do we do?
We start going to places where people like us, people who want to be with us, who say the most ego stroking great things about us and to us, and we want more of them to come everyday. It’s about traffic baby, and lots of it, especially when they pump you up to a smart, intelligent, good looking person….who wouldn’t! We get attention, and more people come because of that attention, attention brings more people, more traffic. But is that a healthy place to be, getting that kind of attention out of an insecurity, or maybe even a false sense of security.
The truth is, we do things to get attention whether we are aware of it or not, and we want that attention to come in the form of traffic when it comes to our blog, it validates us. It gives us confidence, and that confidence makes us feel incredibly good.
This is the real reason we do what we do on the Internet, in our churches, with our friends, and with each other here online, we want to feel loved. We want to belong to something that validates our feelings and thoughts, and I can tell you this, you will never have success in life or in business without people, like-minded people who love what you do because they to like to do it, they may even want to do it with you. Work together, what a concept!
Knowing the TRUTH, getting the PRAISE, getting the COMMENTS, means you continue to do the BLOGGING, to get the TRAFFIC, means you feel the LOVE! We have taken something very intimate, very personal, and handed it over to you on the Internet, we have taken a RISK many of us don’t do with our closest friends. Some of us RISK everything to acquire all the above, with the hopes someone finds value in it, and the best place to put your personal brand is on your Blog. It’s where you feel at home, and I hope you feel at home here on owengreaves.com, I open my home to you, come on in. A RISK worth taking, because you are worth it, even if you feel you aren’t.
The blogosphere is changing, and I hope for the better, afterall, the blogosphere is a very tender place, we are very attached to our personal brand. We want great things from the effort we put into our blogs, and we need to think out loud sometimes, like I am today. I’m here because I believe I have the gift of helps, I only want to help, and if that help provides a living financially, then I know I helped enough people get what they want.
Mostly, I’m here to make you think, to help create new ideas for your business, and those ideas come from knowing what I share here, The Future of Business, what I see and what the world is showing me…I’m just sharing and offering to help. I had to share, why? Because I was thinking again, sorry : )
What do you think, I’m I speaking your truth, or mine only?
MANY BLESSINGS MY FRIENDS!
Imagine you’ve been blogging for the last 3 years, maybe longer, it seems like no one wants to know what you happen to be sharing, maybe 35 people a day stop by and take a quick glance, and then POOF! they’re gone. Your bounce rate is over 80% and time spent by visitors is less than 2 minutes, you’re discouraged, you think you’re waisting your time, in fact you’re thinking of quiting.
That scenario is more common than you might think, and that’s by today’s standards of blogging, it may even be a business going through the same challenges. If you are just blogging to share whatever is going on in your life or information you find interesting, don’t fret, in fact you can get excited. Businesses that try blogging, creating content, and using social media networks, tend to have very little patience for activities that don’t generate revenue quickly. Blogging, or sharing may look much different than today, it will have to be delivered to all mobile device formats.
There is much more to blogging and creating content than just throwing whatever is on your mind out there, hoping it will go viral. If you are mostly interested in making money through blogging, then you need a plan, more importantly a why, a direction, where are you going and what does it look like when it’s finished. Oh, and of course a product or service to sell, but that’s another blog post. Sorry to burst your bubble, but do the plan first, and know the why.
So many people think the Internet is “THE” success vehicle without thinking through what that means, the Internet is merely a door that leads to other doors. The Internet is the game changer for sure, but it is mostly a way to distribute products & services, your content, your voice. The future of business is still the same process of solving problems for consumers, the difference is, they no longer will tolerate being forced into buying upfront. Gerd Leonhard coined this phrase, “Proudly Found Elsewhere”. The masses will keep looking until they find it for free, so keep that cool little phrase in mind when planning.
The Blog, the website, is your doorway, is your sharing doorway blocked with a Toll Booth that may be in the wrong place? The younger generations and those yet to be birthed, want access first, they want to try it, touch it, smell it, and yes experience your product or service before making that financial commitment. Sounds backwards doesn’t it, but that’s how they think, and they will boycott faster than you can blink if you try to force them to buy.
One of the first action items before blogging or doing business online, is to know what you are about, what is the core of your business. Knowing what the core is makes it easier to understand which direction to go in, and help you seek out those who are looking for your information, product or service. You will also want to step back and look at a bigger picture, a view of what is yet to come, to get some of understanding who is coming and how they think.
Your content, your voice, does have an audience, it takes time and patience to reach them, and to find them. Depending on your brand, time will be the key commodity,time is what you will invest in the most. Everything you do, all the hours spent into developing, creating, and or building, knows why you are investing. The Future of Business – Your Content, Your Voice matters, eventually there will be an audience looking for you. I say this because the number of Internet users are still in small numbers, eventually, over the next 5 years we will see another 3 – 4 billion people become users of the Internet. Imagine a marketplace consisting of 7 Billion people someday, getting heard will be difficult, so stick with it. Because if you quit now, you will miss out on golden opportunities that have yet come, yet to be discovered, imagine what can be, plan for it, and see the future of your business in terms of, your content, and your voice.