Look around the web and you’ll find no shortage of advice on blogging. Long gone are the days in which blogging or journaling can be called a new phenomenon. WordPress recently celebrated its 10-year anniversary.
While there’s no universal rule about how often one should blog, many people advocate blogging on a daily basis. (Here’s Chris Brogan’s post on the matter.) Some of the ostensible advantages of doing so include:
- Better SEO. (Google likes volume.)
- You’ll improve as a writer.
- You have a better chance of going viral.
- You’ll ultimately find your voice.
- It enables you to build your tribe, to steal a phrase from Seth Godin.
The Costs Accompany the Benefits
Now, I can’t argue with any of these benefits. They’re all valid arguments, but I am not a fan of daily blogging. Here’s my case against churning out a new post every day:
Daily bloggers may find that the squeeze isn’t worth the juice.
- I am not a full-time writer. If I were blogger-in-chief of Acme Corporation, then I would rightfully be judged on my output. I’m not. Aside from writing, I speak and consult. I also run a small micropublisher. Small business owners have to wear many professional hats, and blogging is just one of mine.
- Want to vs. Have to. I don’t enjoy brushing my teeth; I do it because it prevents cavities. Sometimes I would rather read or watch TV or play tennis than write.
- I have other writing to do. Aside from my own site, I blog for two others on a weekly basis and my other clients at least once per month. Oh, and I’m usually working on a book of considerable length to boot.
- Writing more blog posts equals greater potential overlap. As of now, there are nearly 700 posts on this site. Does each express a unique idea? Of course not. That goes tenfold for daily bloggers. Case in point: I used to read Seth’s blog pretty religiously until I started to find it a bit redundant. I suspect that I’m hardly alone here. After a while, you just can’t shake that feeling that you’ve seen that movie before.
- Less is more/the quality argument. Most TED talks are interesting, but make no mistake: not every idea is worth spreading. Mediocre posts dilute the quality of a site. In my case, I won’t delude myself. Not every post here is a gem, but I hold myself to a relatively high writing standard. People who commit themselves to daily blogging may very well feel the need to put something (anything!) out there just to keep one schedule, even if the post isn’t terribly good, original, or timely.
- Web traffic hinges upon time of year. With few exceptions, every blogger cares about stats and traffic, myself included. Web traffic typically declines around November of each year for most sites. Holidays, vacation, and year-end work activities intervene. I’d like my posts to reach the largest possible audience, and posting on Thanksgiving and Christmas defeats that purpose.
I average about three posts per week on this site and feel very comfortable with that number. With my sleep issues, I could blog daily if I wanted. I consciously choose not to.
If you want to put something out there every day or every hour, then knock yourself out. Before doing so, consider the drawbacks of a daily blogging strategy. You may find that the squeeze isn’t worth the juice.
Just because you can doesn’t mean that you should.
What say you?
Cross-posted on Huffington Post.