Wednesday, March 9, 2011

What's The Point Of My Personal Blog?


Today is one of those days where I am revisiting the purpose of damondnollan.com. What should I write about? What are my goals? Am I being true to me? What value does this site bring to you, the reader? What is the measurement of success? Questions, questions, questions.

Why all these questions? You ask. Well, I think it's a combination of the new Facebook Insights and our disappointing listener numbers for the month of February (Room 3026 Live).

With the release of Facebook Comments and its related real-time analytics dashboard, Facebook Insights, I have been ultra sensitive to my statistics. With better analytics comes more questions about my vision and purpose.

In addition to web analytics, our disappointing listener numbers came in for Room 3026 Live. In the month of February, we failed to meet or surpass January's numbers (3,272 total listens). To me, it's a sign that we're losing our listeners. As a result, I panicked and immediately looked for ways to improve. Should I let something go, pick something back up, or head in another direction?

Clearly, my confidence is being tested. In response, I turn to my old articles. What pearls of wisdom can I find in my archives that will help settle my uneasiness? Let's see, shall we?

Pearls From The Vault
Write what you want, it's yours!
"I forget that this is a personal blog...I can do and say whatever I like here" (Learning to Write Blogs Like Dave Winer and Chris Brogan).

You're not alone in the blogosphere
"We may write blogs alone, but we are a part of the larger blogosphere. Responding or reflecting on [bloggers] work in my space adds depth and promotes community" (Bloggers Are Not Writing In A Bubble).

Share your personal journey so that you don't forget
"I encourage you to write it all down. Take those lessons, ideas, and capture them for future use. If not for you, then for your kids, friends, and relatives. Share your knowledge so that others won't have to repeat the same mistakes. Provide commentary on why you chose one option over another and explain the outcome. In the end, you will be glad that you did" (Having A Case of Deja Vu? Write It All Down).

Know thy audience
"My friends do not react passionately to the latest news out of Silicon Valley. Instead, they want to discuss the perils of parenthood, relationships, and opportunities to enjoy life. Knowing this, I cannot expect my community to engage the same way they do on Louis Gray's site" (Televisions in the Bedroom: Know Thy Community).

Have fun
"Blogging is supposed to be fun. It is supposed to capture the thoughts, ideas, and experiences of every day life. It is perfectly fine to be flexible and write about whatever comes to mind. Be it technology, fatherhood, self-help, IT management, or even something totally off the wall, it is OK to write about that very thing. Whatever that THING is" (What the Movie Julie & Julia Taught Me About Blogging).

Don't talk about it, be about it
"Stop thinking about writing and write" (Mental Constipation: Blogging Doesn't Have To Be That Complicated).

Closing Thought
In reviewing some of my older articles, I recognize that I have been in this place before. Come to think of it, the article on Julia and Julia was written a year ago yesterday. 

I always wondered if I was on some kind of emotional cycle. You know, where each year brings a predictable pattern of behavior or feeling. Am I alone on that?

Regardless of how "sensitive," uncertain, or defeated we may feel today, know that life goes on. Also know that our personal blog should be a fun place to share "thoughts, ideas, and experiences on every day life."

To you, the reader, thanks for the on-going read, support, and encouragement. It means a lot to me!

Until next time...

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Damond L. Nollan, M.B.A.

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